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CDC orders all airlines to turn over names of passengers who have been in 8 African countries


CDC orders all US airlines to turn over names of passengers who’ve been in eight African countries facing travel restrictions due to the Omicron variant

  • The CDC is ordering U.S. airlines to turn over the names of passengers who entered the U.S. from eight African countries facing travel restrictions 
  • The countries include Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe 










The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is ordering all airlines to turn over the names of passengers who arrived in the U.S. from eight countries that are facing travel restrictions 

The directive, first reported on Wednesday by Reuters, has been issued in an effort to quickly identify and stop the spread of the Omicron variant.

The countries include Botswana, Eswatini, Lesotho, Malawi, Mozambique, Namibia, South Africa and Zimbabwe.  

On November 8, the CDC required airlines to collect contact tracing information from international travelers, but had not demanded those details to be turned over.

According to the directive, which took effect on Tuesday evening, airlines have 24 hours to turn over the information.

The CDC is ordering U.S. airlines to turn over the names of passengers who entered the U.S. from eight African countries facing travel restrictions. Pictured: CDC headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia

The CDC is ordering U.S. airlines to turn over the names of passengers who entered the U.S. from eight African countries facing travel restrictions. Pictured: CDC headquarters in Atlanta, Georgia

On Monday, the U.S. announced it would be banning visitors from eight southern African nations due to the Omicron variant. 

The ban does not affect American citizens, and was described as a precautionary measure until we have more information,’ by President Joe Biden in statement. 

The variant was first identified by South African researchers last week and is believed to have originated in Botswana.

It has 50 mutations, more than 30 of which are on the spike protein, used by the coronavirus to enter and infect cells.

By comparison, the Delta variant – still the predominant variant in the U.S. – has two mutations on the spike protein. 

Early evidence suggests it is more transmissible than previous variants but it is unclear if it causes more severe illness or death.

Doctors in South Africa have reported anecdotally that patients infected with  Omicron appear to have mild symptoms, such as a dry cough, fever and night sweats, but say they don’t want to draw conclusions just yet.  

COVID-19 ases have risen dramatically in South Africa from 344 per day on November 3 to 4,373 on Tuesday, data from Johns Hopkins University show.

Fewer than 100 of these cases have been confirmed to be linked to the Omicron variant through genetic sequencing.

However, the increase in infections was dramatic enough for the U.S. to impose the ban.

In the last week, there have been seven direct flights from South Africa to the U.S., three on Delta Air Lines to Atlanta and five on United Airlines to Newark, New Jersey.

Assuming every single seat on those flights were full, airlines will have to turn over more than 2,200 names.

However, it’s unknown how many of those people connected in South Africa or flew directly from South Africa.

This is a breaking news story and will be updated. 



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