Collection of Certain Data Regarding Passengers and Crew Arriving from Foreign Countries by Airline (84 FR 10439) requires airlines carrying passengers from foreign countries to collect and provide passenger information to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) within 14 days of the passenger’s arrival to the US. Airlines are required to identify “Designated Passengers” based on the criteria that they are departing from, or were present in, China. The “Designated Information” that airlines must collect, if available, and provide to the CDC include the passenger’s:
- Full name;
- Primary and secondary contact phone number;
- Address(es) where they will be staying in the US; and
- email address.
Within two hours of departure, the airline must use data-sharing channels to share the Designated Information, and, upon arrival, must provide the CDC with the names of passengers who refused or were unable to provide all the required information.
According to the order, the purpose for collecting the information is to identify opportunities for health education, treatment, prophylaxis, and public health interventions, with respect to COVID-19. The CDC acknowledges that identifying persons potentially infected with COVID-19 will help control the introduction, transmission, and spread of the virus. It may also allow for infected persons to access medical screening, follow-up, and disease prevention measures. The process of identifying infected persons and the people they have come in contact with is called contact tracing.
COVID-19, a new coronavirus originating in China, was identified in late 2019 and has since been detected in more than 80 countries. On January 30, 2020 the World Health Organization concluded that there were still many unknowns, and declared a Public Health Emergency of International Concern. On February 25, 2020 the CDC released a telebrief by Nancy Messonnier, MD, the Director of the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, stating that, “we expect we will see community spread in [the US].”
The CDC is tracking this evolving situation. For the most up-to-date information about COVID-19 in the US, please visit the CDC website.