national

Japan to build virus testing centers for int'l travelers near 3 airports

30 Comments

The requested article has expired, and is no longer available. Any related articles, and user comments are shown below.

© KYODO

©2020 GPlusMedia Inc.

30 Comments
Login to comment

According to the officials, the envisioned testing centers in central parts of the two major cities will target travelers leaving for foreign countries, while the facilities near the airport are intended for both arrivals and departures.

I see redundancy in procedure. Testing only arrivals is sufficient. Pre-departure testing if someone still seek does not have to be free of charge.

The government is also considering issuing certificates for those who test negative, the officials said.

Beware that the result is a snapshot. Besides, 60-70% testing reliability may well have chance of giving false results. False negative visitors could continue to spread the virus while false positive travellers could waste time for quarantine. All the same, don't rely on certificates.

0 ( +3 / -3 )

However, Japan is currently in talks with several countries to mutually ease travel restrictions for businesspeople on condition they submit negative test results and an itinerary on where they plan to go during their stay.

How about easing the restrictions for the foreign nationals of Japan first, before any businesspeople!!

Sickening, this.

14 ( +15 / -1 )

The borders must open ! Businesses must resume!

Fine, test if you can/want to but don't make much of it. Assume everyone has the virus. Kindly buy/make lots of blue masks and ask people to wear them.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

By now, I think that just about everyone has had a tint of COVID-19. With strong immune systems, we are fine. However, testing at the airports makes not sense since COVID-19 is a sneaky little virus. If you have it, it can hide for about 3 weeks until it can be detected. In some cases, not all. We have to do better than this. Am I right?

5 ( +7 / -2 )

Hang on, they are opening up incoming travel again, but PR holders are still not allowed to return if we leave? This is the most blatantly wrong thing I've ever come across in my time in Japan.

14 ( +14 / -0 )

The government is also considering issuing certificates for those who test negative

Totally meaningless. You walk out of the testing centre with your negative certificate, and ten people cough or sneeze on you on the train on your way home.

8 ( +10 / -2 )

Immunity certificates, like taking temperatures, is worthless. Just virtue signalling.

8 ( +9 / -1 )

Airport quarantine stations currently conduct about 1,000 daily PCR tests, with results confirmed in around one or two days.

This is the most troubling part, and its happening now.

Since the airports are not quarentine sites that accommodate people overnight, it means people (both Japanese and foreign) currently arrive, go through immigration and get tested, then leave the airport (!!) and go into Japan with perhaps a suggestion to stay isolated, and they are then contacted a day or two later when the results come back.

And do note that nearly EVERYDAY the airports report several positive test results. (a total of 314 people have tested positive at airports on arrival in the past 3 months)

One would only hope that with the new facilities they will be able to get the results back BEFORE arriving travelers are allowed to freely enter into the rest of the country, and then quarentine whoever tests positive on site. (but somehow I doubt it...)

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Tests and vaccines. Everything other, excluding isolation, is a compromise.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

So let me get this straight. Me (PR) & my wife can go to lets say USA for family emergency, then when trying to return my wife can enter but I cannot? Meanwhile if my PR expires while I am gone, I loose residency? After all the taxes I have paid in over the last 20+ years?

Is the rule in place to truly curb COVID 19? bull manure.

But you will test those that return for a virus that has a two week incubation period?

Asinine, ridiculous, utterly preposterous, and damn near more sickening than the bloody virus itself.

7 ( +8 / -1 )

If the results take two days, it is pointless testing outgoing travellers. Their results will not be ready by the time they reach their destination country. This means they need to be tested beforehand at a hospital or other center, not at the departing airport.

Aren't there faster tests available? We need to catch positive cases at the airport, not let them in.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

So let me get this straight. Me (PR) & my wife can go to lets say USA for family emergency, then when trying to return my wife can enter but I cannot?

No, as a PR. you CAN go to the US right now and return for a "family emergency" such as "if there are special exceptional circumstances, particularly such as when there are circumstances that require humanitarian consideration" (government iussued statement). This has been the case for the past 6 weeks.

Read the MoJ announcement in English here:

http://www.moj.go.jp/EN/nyuukokukanri/kouhou/m_nyuukokukanri01_00003.html

Or an Immigration announcement with specific examples in English here :

https://www.hiecc.or.jp/soudan/upload/file/emg/file1_en_1592531191.pdf

These examples include:

-I had to depart from Japan in order to visit a relative who was in critical condition abroad or to attend the funeral of a deceased relative.

-I had to depart from Japan for treatment at a foreign medical institution such as surgery (including re-examination) or childbirth.

-I had to depart from Japan after receiving a summons from a foreign court to appear as a witness

-1 ( +3 / -4 )

I guess there will be a new airport tax. World air travel will only for rich white people.

-5 ( +1 / -6 )

This is not what immigrations informed me yesterday when I attempted to get my stamp.

Relative in critical condition would be the category I explained to them.

Perhaps I'll just send my wife to go see my mother.

Yes I am quite frustrated, COVID does not discriminate, why should Japan?

3 ( +6 / -3 )

Japan "plans" to set up virus testing facility....well by the time that happens the virus is gone. And I can only imagine the reams of paper required to build and actually be placed in such a bland prison, with its own crazy minute by minute rules.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

They need to start testing themselves

3 ( +3 / -0 )

This is not what immigrations informed me yesterday when I attempted to get my stamp.

"Stamp"? As in, a stamp in your passport? As in, you were physically at the airport immigration in Japan but declined entry (but somehow have not taken this trip yet)?

What "stamp" do you mean? PRs don't need any re-entry permit stamp as long as you return within a year (at which point you essentially are no longer a "resident" of Japan since you are not living here. The US is the same way with going abroad for over a year with their "green card").

-1 ( +2 / -3 )

If this is not covered by health insurance it could cost you Y33,000 (current Tokyo rate).

Russell Lemasters - did they refuse your request to depart Japan? Or to arrive?

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Meanwhile if my PR expires while I am gone, I loose residency? 

Sorry, but PR means permanent and does not expire. If your reentry visa was about to expire while abroad you can get a new one at a Japanese embassy or consulate. It may behoove you to go to immigration and get a 5 year reentry visa.

1 ( +3 / -2 )

@cleo

"The government is also considering issuing certificates for those who test negative"

Totally meaningless. You walk out of the testing centre with your negative certificate, and ten people cough or sneeze on you on the train on your way home.

The testing would not be done to make sure you're safe from the virus, but to make sure you're not going to spread it to others as the first thing after your arrival.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

"...mainly targeting people entering Japan from abroad..." Does that include Japanese people who've been abroad, or only non-Japanese people, aka "foreigners"?

2 ( +2 / -0 )

And who what company will be subsidies with my tax dollars to build these buildings? I have a guess it's Abe or Aso friends. But who can tell it's not a transparent process and as usual a one armed man operating the shredder made a mistake.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

Hang on, they are opening up incoming travel again, but PR holders are still not allowed to return if we leave? This is the most blatantly wrong thing I've ever come across in my time in Japan.

At the moment they are still "strengthening travel restrictions". Testing centers are projected to open in September

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Anyone voting Divinda down doesn’t know the rules!

-1 ( +1 / -2 )

The construction of the facilities is aimed at increasing the amount of polymerase chain reaction, or PCR tests, to over 4,000 per day, with health authorities also hoping to reduce virus testing times to a few hours by using new methods.

Focus will be on the nasty gaijins bringing the virus into the country meanwhile nothing is being done to increase testing domestically to trace and isolate those already infected, well that will defeat the narrative that the virus was tamed.

Very easy to pin it on incoming gaijins like tokyo attributing infections to nightlife establishments by concentrating testing there.

How about compulsory testing for everyone disembarking from the train ? That will never happen as the results will make it difficult to revive the economy.

The goal has never been, will never be to contain the virus.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

kohakuebisu

As the article mentions, there will be new PCR tests with results available in one to two hours. Such tests do help because it means we know that a person was/wasn't infected when entering Japan. If someone does test positive, this is how countries can track and trace people. No doubt people will need to download an app so the government can track where they are/have been and then let others know. Unfortunate but necessary if countries want to avoid the situation that is still unfolding in the US and other countries that haven't managed to do enough tracking and tracing.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@Cleo

"Totally meaningless. You walk out of the testing centre with your negative certificate, and ten people cough or sneeze on you on the train on your way home."

With all due respect, I beg to differ.

My personal case:

1) Had a swab for Covid (even though I had no symptoms, just work precautionary measures)

Result: Negative.

2) A week later had a test for Anti-bodies.

Result: my body is littered with anti-bodies.

Explanation from the testers: virus may have attempted to penetrate, but my body defences were/are stronger.

Never had any symptoms.

3) One week later did another swab testing (second swab)

Result: Negative.

4) Another week, another swab test (third swab)

Result: Negative.

And I'll keep on swabbing every week, as "my" firm is paying the hefty price tag of a single test.

Haven't had another anti-body test because the testers refuse to do it; too expensive. they argue. Also claim it's unlikely I'll get Covid, given I've got lots of anti-bodies.

Probably no ingestion of alcohol, never smoking, never drinking or snorting Coke has its benefits.

I receive confirmation of the test(s) every time over the phone/by e-mail.

They can be presented (printed e-mail) if I need to travel.

-1 ( +0 / -1 )

@divinda the airports are not quarentine (sic) sites that accommodate people overnight.

I beg to differ ask Paul McCartney and countless other unfortunates who've been detained at Japan's airports.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

@macv - I beg to differ that quarAntine and detention are even remotely the same. You think its a good idea to put an infected foreign family (which has already happened in the past 2 months even with the strict entry limitations) into an airport holding cell so they can be deported? Just ask the US's ICE how well that went....

0 ( +0 / -0 )

The testing would not be done to make sure you're safe from the virus, but to make sure you're not going to spread it to others as the first thing after your arrival.

So you get your negative certificate, get sneezed on on the way home, and don't infect anyone until the second thing after your arrival? Is that somehow OK?

With all due respect, I beg to differ.

With all due respect, I think you're talking about something else. You tested negative umpteen times, fine, that means you didn't have the virus when you were tested. You tested positive for antibodies, so you presumably did have the virus at some point (when you weren't being tested), were asymptomatic, and you fought it off without even realising it, leaving you with a body littered with anti-bodies.

A certificate for a positive antibody test might have some meaning; it means (if the new corona is like most other viruses) you cannot catch the virus again and cannot pass it on to anyone else. A negative test for the virus is of time-limited value.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Login to leave a comment

Facebook users

Use your Facebook account to login or register with JapanToday. By doing so, you will also receive an email inviting you to receive our news alerts.

Facebook Connect

Login with your JapanToday account

User registration

Articles, Offers & Useful Resources

A mix of what's trending on our other sites