Armed Forces News

The Marine Corps has updated guidelines for deployment and travel, to ensure that such movement does not foster the spread of Covid-19. The details were outlined in a service-wide message issued earlier this month.

A key component affects all fully vaccinated Marines, sailors, civilian employees and contractors, who now are told to follow CDC guidelines. Simply put, this means the limitations and restrictions that have been in place since the pandemic began are being relaxed. For example, testing is no longer necessary unless a host country requires it. Also, there is no need for self-quarantine. Social-distancing and wearing of masks is still required. More details are available on the CDC web site.

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Non-vaccinated Marines, sailors, family members, civilian employees and contractors must be tested for the virus one to three days before leaving or entering the U.S. Those who are recovering from the disease do not have to undergo further testing, but must have documentation to prove they are no longer sick or contagious. Waivers would be issued under “limited circumstances.” Essential personnel could be granted some leeway as well – as long as they undergo a health assessment, wear a mask and practice social distancing.

Non-vaccinated Marines, sailors, civilian employees and contractors who travel in or out of the country must undergo a 14-day restriction of movement, which may be overseen by either U.S. or host nations. For shipboard deployments, time underway could count as part of the 14-day restriction as long as there are no on-board cases of Covid and there is no contact with other vessels that could result in transmission of the virus.

Determination if restrictions are necessary for deployments within the continental U.S. will hinge upon risk-based screenings.

Other provisions that address individual augments and reservists place screening responsibilities upon local commands and authorities.