Buying, work and strolling the canine: over 75% do not quarantine after journey

Only 155 of 728 travelers surveyed by the public health institute RIVM followed the quarantine rules on their return to the Netherlands from a high-risk country, Health Minister Hugo de Jonge told MPs on Tuesday.

The RIVM’s behavioral unit regularly examines attitudes towards the coronavirus and how well the rules are being adhered to. Over 47,000 people took part in this survey.

The quarantine is not yet legally enforceable, but people who have been in a high-risk country should self-isolate for 10 days on their return, or five days if they have a negative coronavirus test five days after their return.

The reasons given by respondents in the survey for not complying with quarantine arrangements range from “getting some fresh air” and “walking the dog” to the need to go shopping – which was cited by seven out of ten respondents. Three out of ten left home to work.

Senators are due to vote on laws that will make quarantine mandatory on May 18. Only a handful of countries, including Australia, New Zealand and Singapore, are not on the Dutch high-risk list.

MEPs have criticized the quarantine legislation, in particular its enforcement, which will be based on telephone controls. Anyone who breaks the rules will be fined € 339.

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