Border Control, Case Identification, and Containment
On January 27, the National Health Insurance Administration (NHIA) and the National Immigration Agency integrated patients’ past 14-day travel history with their NHI identification card data from the NHIA; this was accomplished in 1 day. Taiwan citizens’ household registration system and the foreigners’ entry card allowed the government to track individuals at high risk because of recent travel history in affected areas. Those identified as high risk (under home quarantine) were monitored electronically through their mobile phones. On January 30, the NHIA database was expanded to cover the past 14-day travel history for patients from China, Hong Kong, and Macau. On February 14, the Entry Quarantine System was launched, so travelers can complete the health declaration form by scanning a QR code that leads to an online form, either prior to departure from or upon arrival at a Taiwan airport. A mobile health declaration pass was then sent via SMS to phones using a local telecom operator, which allowed for faster immigration clearance for those with minimal risk. This system was created within a 72-hour period. On February 18, the government announced that all hospitals, clinics, and pharmacies in Taiwan would have access to patients’ travel histories.