Taiwan’s free quarantine leaves little cause for complaint

The following article was published in today’s Taipei Times 

I’m writing this on a beachfront balcony with a spectacular ocean view. My hotel room is spotless, spacious and well-equipped. Meals are delivered to the door thrice daily, and my all-inclusive two-week stay is free. True, the beach remains tantalizingly inaccessible. But that’s the only downside of Taiwan’s quarantine system from where I sit.

In March 2020, the BBC caused a kerfuffle by quoting the mother of a British tourist who had bemoaned the “prison-like” and “filthy” conditions of a quarantine facility in Hualien. After a strenuous rebuttal from the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA) and the Central Epidemic Command Center (CECC), which included typically hyperbolic flourishes about “the damage done to the nation’s reputation,” the BBC promptly removed the report from its Web site.

Admittedly, non-home quarantine seems to have been a mixed bag since its introduction for non-residents early last year.

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