Wednesday, 20 January 2021

Questions (556)

Peadar Tóibín

Question:

556. Deputy Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Health the number of persons who have travelled to Ireland by air and by sea in each of the past five months; the number who filled a passenger locator form in each of the past five months; the number who completed a passenger locator form that were contacted within 14 days in each of the past five months; and the number who travelled here who can be confirmed were adhering 100% to self-isolation in each of the past five months. [2560/21]

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Written answers (Question to Health)

There have been approximately 712,000 Passenger Locator Forms (PLF's) completed by passengers arriving into Ireland since the electronic PLF was introduced on 26th August 2020 to 7th January. A call centre was set up to manage the PLF data.

508,000 passengers who completed electronic PLF’s and those who completed a valid paper version of the form have all been contacted and have received public health messages. The PLF is used to support an enhanced system of engagements with arriving passengers including the targeting of public health messages via SMS. Passengers are contacted to verify the place of address provided on the form. This is done via interactive SMS with follow up phone calls as appropriate. 1.3 million public health SMS messages approximately were issued between 26th August to 7th January.

From the outset of the pandemic, Ireland’s approach to international travel has been centred on advisory public health measures with the exception of the PLF, which has been a mandatory requirement for arriving passengers to complete. The PLF allows for targeted public health messaging and assists contact tracing purposes.

The detailed monthly figures requested by the Deputy have been requested from the PLF contact centre and this will be provided to the Deputy once available.