Latest inbound control arrangement for foreign domestic helpers
The Labour Department (LD) today (September 24) reminded foreign domestic helpers (FDHs) and employers that the Government will adjust the inbound control arrangement for overseas inbound persons with effect from September 26 (Monday).
An LD spokesman said, "FDHs who are coming to work in Hong Kong from September 26 onwards will be subject to the revised inbound control arrangement under the '0+3' model, i.e. they need not undergo quarantine at hotels upon arrival and will only be subject to medical surveillance for three days, followed by self-monitoring for four days. They will be subject to multiple tests during the medical surveillance period and the subsequent four-day monitoring period. During the medical surveillance period, FDHs can work at the employers' residence and go out to conduct daily essential activities of lower risk, e.g. taking transport, entering supermarkets and markets, etc. They will, however, be subject to Amber Code restrictions under the Vaccine Pass, and are not allowed to enter high-risk premises involving mask-off or group activities, as well as other premises requiring key protection (Note)."
In view of the conditions of individual families, the Commissioner for Labour has given in-principle approval for employers to choose to arrange FDHs to stay at licensed hotels or guesthouses to complete the three-day medical surveillance and the subsequent four-day self-monitoring. It is not necessary to make an application to the LD. If employers arrange FDHs to undergo medical surveillance and self-monitoring in licensed hotels or guesthouses, they should bear the accommodation expenses and provide food allowance to FDHs for that period. The list of licensed hotels and guesthouses can be found here. If an FDH cannot work in his/her employer's residence as a result of the employer's arrangement to have the FDH undergo medical surveillance and self-monitoring at a place other than the employer's residence, the employer should pay the FDH a sum equivalent to the remuneration that the FDH would have earned if he/she had worked for that period.
Besides, starting from September 26, FDHs coming to work in Hong Kong only need to present a proof of negative result of a rapid antigen test (RAT) conducted within 24 hours prior to the scheduled time of departure. Any proof of negative result of a nucleic acid test before departure is not required. FDHs still need to complete the online Health & Quarantine Information Declaration of the Department of Health (www.chp.gov.hk/hdf) prior to boarding a flight to declare a record of completion of vaccination and result of pre-departure RAT.
Under the "0+3" model, Designated Quarantine Hotels (DQHs) will be cancelled. The day of arrival at Hong Kong with the first nucleic acid test conducted is considered as Day 0. During medical surveillance, FDHs need to conduct RATs daily and are required to undergo a nucleic acid test on Day 2. Upon receipt of a negative result of the nucleic acid test on Day 2, the FDHs' Vaccine Pass will be changed to Blue Code. FDHs are subject to self-monitoring during the subsequent four days upon completion of medical surveillance and should conduct daily RATs until Day 7. They are also required to take nucleic acid tests on Day 4 and Day 6.
As for FDHs arrived at Hong Kong before September 26 and are still undergoing quarantine at DQHs on the same day, they are allowed to leave on September 26 as arranged by the hotels. FDHs arrived at Hong Kong within three days (i.e. FDHs arrived at Hong Kong between September 24 and 26) will still be required to undergo medical surveillance and be subject to Amber Code restrictions. If FDH employers choose to let their FDHs continue to stay at the hotels to complete medical surveillance and self-monitoring, they may liaise with the hotels on their own. Employers are required to bear the accommodation expenses and provide food allowance to FDHs, as well as pay the FDHs a sum equivalent to the remuneration that the FDHs would have earned if they had worked for the periods of medical surveillance and self-monitoring at hotels.
For details of the above arrangement, please refer to the press release issued by the Government on September 24 (www.info.gov.hk/gia/general/202209/24/P2022092400048.htm).
The dedicated FDH portal (www.fdh.labour.gov.hk) of the LD also provides information and useful links relating to inbound control arrangement for FDHs. Should there be enquiries on the inbound control arrangement for FDHs, please contact the LD through its 24-hour hotline at 2717 1771 (manned by 1823), by email to firstname.lastname@example.org or through the online form on the dedicated portal (www.fdh.labour.gov.hk).
Persons under the category of Amber Code cannot enter the following premises subject to "active checking" of the Vaccine Pass and other premises in the capacity of a customer or visitor:
Premises regulated under the Prevention and Control of Disease (Requirements and Directions) (Business and Premises) Regulation (Cap. 599F) which are subject to "active checking" of the Vaccine Pass:
- Premises required to use the QR Code Verification Scanner and is regulated under Cap. 599F, i.e. catering business premises (including bars or pubs), amusement game centres, bathhouses, fitness centres, places of amusement, indoor places of public entertainment, party rooms, beauty parlours and massage establishments, club houses, clubs or nightclubs, karaoke establishments, mahjong-tin kau premises, indoor sports premises, swimming pools, cruise ships, indoor event premises, barber shops or hair salons and religious premises.
- Premises required to inspect the Vaccine Pass visually as far as feasible, i.e. outdoor places of public entertainment, outdoor sports premises and outdoor event premises.
Other premises: residential care homes for the elderly, residential care homes for persons with disabilities, schools and designated healthcare premises.