Lessons from Taiwan’s response to Covid
Sir, – With the exciting news of Irish society’s gradual reopening and its plans for an accelerated rollout of its vaccination strategy, it is clear that the Irish public is welcoming of a return to normality in their daily lives.
In the interest of mutual cooperation, assistance, and friendship, Taiwan stands ready to offer its knowledge and expertise to any country that has found itself wrought by the most devastating consequences of the Covid-19 pandemic, and wishes to minimise its residual effects as the world looks towards brighter days ahead.
Perhaps the most critical of all the early measures taken by Taiwan was the successful implementation of its mandatory quarantine system for all arrivals into the country, a system that is likely to remain in place in Ireland in the short to medium term as the country emerges from lockdown and seeks to guard itself from variants of concern.
Passengers arriving in Taiwan were and continue to be subjected to mandatory self-quarantine for a period of 14 days, whether in government-approved quarantine hotels or in a private residence, where they are monitored by a “digital fencing tracking system”, utilising the positioning system of phones to remind those under home quarantine or isolation to remain in the designated area. If the individual happens to leave the designated area, a warning message is sent to that person, as well as to public health personnel, civil affairs personnel, and the police force, so that the case may be followed up on accordingly. The condition for travellers to enter mandatory quarantine can be viewed as just one part of the sturdy armour that has guarded Taiwan against the most severe consequences of the global pandemic.
Taiwan does not wish to adopt a “holier than thou” stance when it comes to its plan for repelling the worst ramifications of Covid-19 from its borders. Each country is different, with inalienable rights to handle public health crises how and when it may deem appropriate to do so. However, Taiwan wishes to stress that it is ready, willing, and able to share its findings, lessons, and data with any country in the noble pursuit of mutual collaboration internationally. Taiwan stands firm in its commitment to assist not only Ireland, but any nation which seeks to know more about its strategy for successfully containing the coronavirus. – Yours, etc,
PIERRE TP YANG,
Office in Ireland,