BREAKING NEWS: CNMI updates quarantine and entry protocols

Posted on Jan 29 2022

The safety and health of the residents of the CNMI remain the top priority of the Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force and the Commonwealth Healthcare Corp. With approximately 99% of the CNMI’s eligible population fully vaccinated and approximately 50% of those fully vaccinated having received a booster shot, given the epidemiological data and the state of the health system in the CNMI, quarantine and entry protocols will be updated based on the recommendations of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on isolation for persons confirmed positive with COVID-19 and are asymptomatic. In addition, COVID-19 testing pre-registration will no longer be required for anyone wishing to get tested at the community-based testing site but is encouraged to minimize registration wait time.

If an individual suspects COVID-19 infection, they should:

– seek testing

– stay home to prevent transmission to others

– rapidly notify close contacts of their exposure, and

– seek health care to facilitate access to medical treatment if they are at higher risk for severe outcomes.

The Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force and the CHCC will continue to ensure every individual in the CNMI has access to information about COVID-19, to testing, and to therapeutic treatments without barriers so they can safely isolate themselves away from others and prevent spread to those still vulnerable to this virus, especially to the unvaccinated population.

Effective Jan. 29, 2022, individuals confirmed positive with COVID-19 and are asymptomatic must stay home for at least five days, isolated from others, and wear a well-fitted mask around others.

If an individual cannot isolate at home safely, an order to isolate at a government site will be given by the CNMI health official.

Should an individual experience symptoms during their quarantine, their five-day quarantine period restarts to zero days on the day they have symptoms.

Confirmed-positive individuals who do not show symptoms or have symptoms that are resolving (without fever for 24 hours) can end their isolation after five full days. After completing five full days of isolation, individuals must continue to wear a well-fitting mask, like a surgical, KN95, or N95 mask around others to minimize the risk of infecting other people.

The CHCC continues to recommend and encourage residents of the CNMI to wear masks in indoor spaces or when around individuals outside of their immediate household.

Individuals who continue to show symptoms should remain in isolation until their symptoms resolve or if they have tested negative on an antigen test. Antigen testing is available at the Department of Fire and Emergency Medical Services fire stations and at the Koblerville COVID-19 Community Center for those who do not have access to a free antigen test home kits.

Individuals who were exposed to COVID-19 and are unvaccinated or are not up to date on their vaccinations (had not received a booster shot) should minimize contact with others, wear well-fitting masks, and should test on the fifth day after their exposure at a community-based testing site.

Individuals who were exposed to COVID-19 and are up to date with their vaccinations (received booster shot) should wear well-fitting masks and should test on the fifth day after their exposure at a community-based testing site.

For any individual who tests positive for COVID-19, isolation guidelines must be followed.

Pre-registration for community-based testing will no longer be required. Follow the CHCC on Facebook for information on the next CBT schedule.

The change is motivated by science demonstrating that the majority of SARS-CoV-2 transmission occurs early in the course of illness, generally in the one-two days prior to the onset of symptoms and up to four-five days after with both delta and omicron variants.

The emergence of the omicron variant further emphasizes the importance of boosters and prevention efforts needed to protect against COVID-19. According to the CDC, data from clinical trials showed that a booster shot increased the immune response in trial participants who finished a Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna primary series six months earlier or who received a Johnson & Johnson/Janssen single-dose vaccine two months earlier. With an increased immune response, individuals should have improved protection against getting infected with COVID-19. For Pfizer-BioNTech and Johnson & Johnson/Janssen, clinical trials also showed that a booster shot helped prevent severe disease.

Individuals are encouraged to seek care or get a COVID-19 test if they are experiencing mild COVID-19 symptoms, as they may be eligible for treatment that must be given soon after infection. It is important that individuals seek care early so that the available therapeutic treatments are effective for the prevention of hospitalization and death.

Individuals should call 911 if they are experiencing the following severe symptoms, including but not limited to: trouble breathing; persistent pain or pressure in the chest; new confusion; inability to wake or stay awake; pale, gray, blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone.

The Koblerville COVID-19 Community Center, or KC3, located at the Koblerville Youth Center is open to serve the community of Saipan seven days a week including holidays, from 8am to 4pm.

The KC3 is a hub where individuals can get tested for COVID-19 (with or without pre-registration), get assessed for monoclonal antibody treatment, and obtain guidance on all COVID-19 matters, including what to do if they are a close contact of a COVID-19-positive individual.

Individuals identified as positive cases and seeking COVID-19 monoclonal antibody treatment can be assessed at the KC3, and may either receive the treatment at the KC3 or be referred to the Alternative Care Site at Kanoa Resort.

Individuals requesting test results from any COVID-19 testing site may call the following numbers: (670) 785-9972, 785-9973, 785-9970, 785-9968, 785-9966.

Also effective Jan. 29, 2022, all travelers entering the CNMI by air or sea will continue to be tested for COVID-19 on arrival.

Unvaccinated travelers are required to quarantine in a designated government facility for five days, and will be tested again before leaving quarantine. Unvaccinated travelers may quarantine in their home or lodging if they complete their mandatory health declaration form at least 72 hours prior to arrival, and after their home or lodging passes assessment (provide evidence they can safely isolate in their home or lodging for five days).

Fully vaccinated travelers will be tested at the port of entry and are allowed to wait for their test results in their home or lodging. While waiting for the results of their COVID-19 test, fully vaccinated travelers must limit their contact with others until results are received. Fifth-day testing is now encouraged to minimize risks to individuals encountered. Travelers wishing to avail of fifth-day testing may show up at the Koblerville COVID-19 Community Center or at the community-based testing site and present their confirmation code. For inbound travelers whose final destination is either Rota or Tinian, their fifth-day test may be scheduled in their respective final destination’s health center.

Fully vaccinated individuals are responsible for uploading onto their health declaration form proof of completing a COVID-19 vaccine series. The vaccination record must include the following information: vaccine administrator, recipient’s name, recipient’s date of birth, vaccination site, vaccine name, vaccination administration date, lot number, and vaccine expiration date.

For travelers vaccinated outside the CNMI, in addition to the CDC Vaccination Record Card, an official immunization record or an attestation statement may be required by the CHCC Communicable Disease Investigation/Inspection team. The attestation statement confirms that the information provided in the health declaration form is true and is subject to CNMI laws that may lead to criminal fines. For individuals who were vaccinated in the CNMI, vaccination records from the CHCC will be used to verify vaccination status.

Travelers seeking essential worker status must be fully vaccinated and must submit a negative PCR test with their application 72 hours prior to arrival via

All travelers are encouraged to fill out their health declaration form prior to arrival at

All travelers and residents are reminded to live COVID-19 safe: follow the 3 W’s (wear your mask, wash your hands, and watch your distance); avoid crowds and poorly ventilated spaces; cover coughs and sneezes; clean and disinfect high touch surfaces daily; be alert for symptoms daily; and get tested for COVID-19.

While individuals wait to get tested or get their test results, they should live COVID-19 safe.

The CHCC and the Governor’s COVID-19 Task Force highly encourage unvaccinated individuals to get vaccinated or get a booster shot against COVID-19 to help prevent severe illness, hospitalization, and death. Data from small clinical trials show that vaccine effectiveness against COVID-19 infection is waning after the primary series, but protection remains high against severe disease and hospitalization. Register for COVID-19 vaccination at

If an individual is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms like coughing, fever, shortness of breath, or new loss of taste or smell, they should get checked by a health care provider right away, or call the CHCC Tele-Triage line (670) 233-2067 if you do not have a provider.

Call CHCC contact tracers for concerns regarding possible exposure to a positive case at (670) 286-1710, 286-1711, 285-1942, 287-1652, and 287-1683.

For mental health support and coping skills, call (670) 284-0844/45 or (670) 284-0847, every day, 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.

For more information regarding general COVID-19 response protocols, call the COVID-19 Infoline at (670) 488-0211, every day, 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. For medical emergencies, call 911. Updates from the COVID-19 Task Force and the CHCC can be found on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter accounts @governorcnmi and @cnmichcc, as well as through CNMI media partners. (PR)

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