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President Biden will add new COVID-19 travel rules and allow free at-home tests (kind of)

President Joe Biden will announce a new COVID-19 plan to keep people safe amid the new surge

President Joe Biden speaks at the White House campus.
President Joe Biden speaks in the South Court Auditorium on the White House campus on Wednesday, Dec. 1, 2021, in Washington. Biden is expected to announce a new travel plan as it relates to coronavirus variants.
Evan Vucci, Associated Press

President Joe Biden will unveil a new plan to tackle the novel coronavirus — specifically the delta and omicron variants — ahead of the winter months, Reuters reports.

  • The new plan will include new travel requirements for international travelers, including requiring passengers to test negative for COVID-19 within one day of traveling to the U.S., according to ABC News.
  • The U.S. government will require private health insurance companies to reimburse companies 100% for any over-the-counter at-home COVID-19 tests.
  • More COVID-19 tests will be made available through clinics and health centers, too.
  • Biden will also call on employers to give their employees paid time off if they get their booster shot, according to The New York Times.

The new plan to fight COVID-19 comes ahead of a potential winter surge and as the new omicron variant begins to spread around the world.

  • “The bottom line is we are really pulling out all the stops to get Americans the maximum protection as we head into the winter months and as we face this new (omicron) variant,” Natalie Quillian, the deputy White House COVID-19 response coordinator, told NPR.

Biden isn’t making any major announcements with this move. Instead, he will remain focused on getting booster shots into arms of all adults and seniors and setting up more vaccine clinics, according to NPR.