New online portal for home quarantine applications

Malaysians returning from overseas were glad to hear that they would be able to do their mandatory quarantine from home, from 10th August 2021, if they are fully vaccinated. But the relaxed guideline for returning travellers came with slight hiccups, as home quarantine requests flooded in, causing a backlog of over 6,000 applications.

To simplify the process, the government unveiled a new online portal for Home Quarantine Applications (HQA), eCOVID19 HQA. Starting Tuesday, 21st September, fully vaccinated returning Malaysians and foreign travellers can request for home quarantine online through several simple steps.

New portal for home quarantine applications

On 20th September, Health Minister Khairy Jamaluddin announced that inbound travellers can now turn to a pared down Home Quarantine Application (HQA) process via an online portal on Tuesday, 21st September, at 8AM.

It will replace “the current Jurassic process”, where applicants had to email their applications to the Health Minister’s Home Surveillance Order team for home quarantine requests – which led to a backlog of 6,000 applications. Khairy also mentioned that applicants will receive a response “within three days” of completing and submitting their applications.

Home Quarantine Applications portal - health screening
Image credit: Malaysia Airports

This simplified application process introduced via the new HQA portal will benefit Malaysians and foreign travellers wishing to travel to Malaysia and skip costly quarantines at hotels.

Eligibility and application process for HQA

Those who wish to undergo mandatory quarantine at home can find application approval requirements and information on the application process on the new online portal.

On the website, it states that local and foreign travellers, including Malaysia Permanent Residents (PR) or My Malaysia Second Home (MM2H) individuals, can qualify for home quarantine.

Travellers have to first check three boxes to be eligible for home quarantine:

  • Having a valid Covid-19 vaccination certificate that indicates full vaccination
  • Having access to a home or residence, with proper facilities based on risk evaluation, for home quarantine
  • Having a negative Covid-19 PCR test, done three days before day of departure

Fully vaccinated individuals refer to those who are now 14 days from receiving their second vaccine dose for two-dose vaccinations, or 28 days after their one-dose vaccination appointment.

Likewise, risk evaluation for homes or residences that qualify for use as a home quarantine space is based on eight factors, which takes into account residents and spaces:

  • Number of residents in home or residence
  • Number of elderly residents (over 60 years old)
  • Number of young residents (under 12 years old)
  • Number of residents with chronic illnesses
  • Number of pregnant residents
  • Number of rooms in residence
  • Number of bathrooms in residence
  • Humber of bedrooms with en-suite bathrooms in residence

Once these conditions are met, travellers can proceed to put through their online applications on the HQA portal here. Documents you will need include clear scans of a valid ID (MyKAD or Passport) and vaccination certificate.

An applicant can fill out the form on behalf of travellers, with information to be given in the application including full name, ID number, telephone, email address, date of arrival and application type (home quarantine, hospital quarantine or early release). Inbound travellers, likewise, will have to give their full name, ID number, nationality, date of birth, vaccine type, and dates of appointment for their first and second vaccine dose.

Home Quarantine Applications portal - steps

For those traveling in a group or a family, one application can accommodate up to 10 travellers who wish to use one quarantine address. It should be noted that applications should be submitted 7-10 days before the date of arrival too. Once submitted, applications will be processed within seven working days, and applicants will be notified via email whether their applications have been successful.

Upon arrival in Malaysia, travellers will have to take another Covid-19 PCR test and present their HQA approval letters to authorities. Wristbands, or digital trackers, will then be issued to identify them as a Person Under Surveillance (PUS). Their MySejahtera profiles will also reflect this, until they’ve completed their mandatory home quarantine for 14 days, unless otherwise stated, while updating their Home Assessment Tool daily.

Home Quarantine Applications portal now live

Many Malaysians overseas and expatriates have been looking to return to Malaysia without having to bear costly fees for quarantine, so it came as a relief that they will get to do so at home. This new HQA portal will hopefully speed up the application process for home quarantine, and make it easier for inbound travellers undergoing the mandatory process.

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Cover image adapted from: Malaysia Airports and KEMENTERIAN KESIHATAN MALAYSIA

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