Falkland Islands Government
COVID-19: Information and Guidance

01 December 2021

COVID-19 Public Update


As has been reported in the international media, the WHO (World Health Organization) has declared a new coronavirus variant to be ‘of concern’ and named it Omicron.

The new variant has several mutations that may have an impact on how it behaves, for example, on how easily it spreads or the severity of illness it causes. You can find a summary of the latest information they have available on Omicron on their official website: https://www.who.int/news/item/28-11-2021-update-on-omicron

As has been the case throughout the pandemic, the Falkland Islands Government continues to work closely with UK health bodies and organisations to ensure we are fully informed as to the latest data and scientific research in respect of the new variant. This information will then be used to assist in planning our ongoing response to Covid-19 and the measures that are in place to protect our community.


  • Total number of swab tests taken and processed to date: 8,316
  • Total number of swabs taken but not yet tested: 0
  • Total number of positive cases since 3 April 2020: 83
  • Number of current positive test results within the Islands: 0

There are currently no positive cases in the Islands and all cases to date have been identified via our quarantine surveillance swabbing regime.


Our vaccination programme is proceeding, against a backdrop of ever-evolving advice from the JCVI (Joint Committee on Vaccination and Immunisation) and the next phase will focus on delivering primary doses to children aged 12-15 and booster doses to adults aged 18-50.

Children aged 12 -15 will be offered their first primary doses next week and it is likely that a second dose will be offered to children aged 12-15 in late January/early February. Young people aged 16-17 who received their first dose on November 5 will likely be offered their second dose after mid-January – this follows updated advice from the JCVI. 

Approximately 1,250 people have received their booster dose so far, predominantly those aged over 50 and in at risk categories. Adults aged 18 and over who have not yet had their booster will have the opportunity to do this month.  JCVI guidance now stipulates that a booster vaccination should not be given within three months of completion of the primary course, whereas it was previously six months; therefore, anyone who received their second dose before 13 September 2021 can receive their booster later this month.

The vaccination centre will once be in operation in the FIDF Club and anyone who has not yet had any dose of the Covid-19 vaccine and those who received their first dose before 13 November can come for their second dose during the sessions next month.  Timings will be announced in the coming weeks. As before, FIGAS will take a vaccination team to the West and Outer Islands, and as these visits are weather dependent, dates will be confirmed nearer the time.

Please don’t forget that we have a dedicated frequently asked questions page on our website to address any queries you might have about vaccinations; please visit: https://www.falklands.gov.fk/covid-19/vaccinations/vaccine-faq


KEMH wishes to remind the public of the continued importance of reporting cold and flu-like symptoms. If you are experiencing symptoms, please contact KEMH on 28000, you will be asked to provide a contact number by the reception staff and asked to self-isolate until advised otherwise.

If you have a viral illness it remains important to stay at home and away from others until you are well. Any child with a fever, who is coughing, has a green snotty nose, is not eating or drinking, or has diarrhoea or vomiting should stay away from nursery or school. They should be free of fever and well for 24 hours before returning to nursery or school.

Remember, in order to avoid spreading viruses:

  • Catch it: germs spread easily; carry tissues and use them to catch your cough or sneeze
  • Bin it: germs can live for several hours on tissues, dispose of these as soon as possible
  • Kill it: hands can transfer germs to every surface you touch, so clean your hands often.


KEMH would like to remind the public that if you require a Covid-19 swab to be undertaken prior to travelling outside of the Falkland Islands, then you must inform the KEMH 10 days before travel.

To organise a swab, you will need to email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with the subject heading “Travel Swab”. You must include in your email:

  1. Full Name, Address and Date of Birth of individual requiring swab
  2. Contact number that KEMH can call you on
  3. Date you will be leaving the Islands
  4. Country you are travelling to AND the requirements of that country (i.e. swab must be taken within 72 hours of departure)

KEMH will then contact you to arrange an appointment for you to attend and will call to advise your results. Please be advised this service is free of charge, however it is run alongside the quarantine swab testing regime, therefore booking in advance is required.

During the festive period, the KEMH laboratory will be operating on an on-call basis only, and any swab tests not booked in advance may not be processed in time for your travel, so please ensure you leave plenty of time to arrange for your test.


The Falkland Islands Government provides two useful checklists for northbound and southbound travel – you can find these on our website by visiting: https://www.falklands.gov.fk/covid-19/

For northbound travellers…

Following the emergence of the new Omicron variant, the UK government has tightened up its rules on entrance into England. The revised requirements are as follows:

Health is a devolved responsibility in the UK and so the rules in Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales may be different, please check the websites below for the latest information:

For southbound travellers…

You can find the latest list of visitors who are permitted entry into the Falkland Islands by visiting our website: https://www.falklands.gov.fk/covid-19/travel/southbound

All visitors are subject to the same quarantine requirements and permits are regularly reviewed by Customs and Immigration to ensure that the non-essential visitor policy is being rigorously and consistently applied. More information on quarantine measures is available on our website: https://www.falklands.gov.fk/covid-19/quarantine

Additionally, in light of recent disruptions to southbound Airbridge travel, the Falkland Islands Government has agreed to reimburse passengers whose plans were disrupted to the extent that they ended up needing to take three or more PCR tests before travelling.

Claims will only be approved for southbound flights and will only be processed for the third test onwards, there will be no reimbursement for the first two PCR tests purchased and taken by any individual.

To apply for reimbursement, applicants need to complete a ‘PCR Test Claim Form’ and provide a copy of all receipts for the PCR tests they have purchased and taken. The form and further instructions are available on the government’s website, please visit:



As advised on 23 July 2021, commercial airlinks with both Chile and Brazil will remain suspended until at least 1 February 2022. As has been the case throughout the pandemic, the situation is subject to regular review, with the most recent discussions taking place with LATAM throughout November.

Each review takes into account prevailing travel and border restrictions, as well as the latest public health data on the progress of the pandemic in South America and the global status of vaccinations. The emergence of the new Omicron variant has introduced an additional factor that now needs consideration, and a further update will be provided to the public once more information is known.


Please don’t forget to check our dedicated website for the latest information on how the Falkland Islands Government is responding to Covid-19; including questions about travel, testing and quarantine. To date over 40,000 visitors have accessed the website and it is still the best resource for Covid-19 support; please visit https://www.falklands.gov.fk/covid-19/

There will be a further Covid-19 update later in December, given the emerging situation with the new variant and the usual increase in travel to and from the Islands this month.

The next monthly Covid-19 update for the Falkland Islands will be on 5 January 2022.