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Pa. health officials: You must quarantine or test negative for COVID-19 after traveling, entering state - with a few exceptions

PITTSBURGH — The Pennsylvania Department of Health just released updated orders related to traveling.

The new guidance requires anyone over 11 years old either entering or returning to Pa. to provide evidence of a negative COVID-19 test – or quarantine for 14 days.

If you get a negative test during that two-week period, you will be released from travel quarantine. Officials clarified that “travel quarantine” means that people quarantining after travel who have not been identified as a close contact of someone who tested positive are permitted to end quarantine once they receive a negative test result.

Besides children 10 and younger, people leaving the state for less than 24 hours are also exempt from testing and quarantine.

“This update keeps in place the need for people visiting and returning to Pennsylvania to have a negative test or quarantine for 14 days upon arrival,” Dr. Rachel Levine, secretary of the Pa. Department of Health, said in a release. “We still recommend that Pennsylvanians do not travel, and the stay at home advisory I issued earlier this week remains in effect. I know that it is hard not to travel during this holiday season, but it is the right thing to do to protect one another from this devastating virus.”

Another exception to the quarantine rule is those complying with a court order, such as child custody requirements.

Anyone waiting for a test result is permitted to enter Pa., but they have to quarantine until a negative test result is received -- even if they’re asymptomatic.