The United States will end the COVID-19 testing requirement for air travelers entering the country starting Sunday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said, deciding to lift a measure that has been in place for more than a year amid the coronavirus pandemic.

Overseas travelers have been required to provide proof of a negative coronavirus test result -- initially within three days, and currently within one day -- before boarding a flight to the United States.

A person is tested for COVID-19 at Los Angeles International Airport on Dec. 1, 2021. (Getty/Kyodo)

But the pandemic has now shifted to "a new phase," due to the widespread uptake of vaccines and the availability of effective therapeutics, the CDC said Friday.

"Each of these measures has contributed to lower risk of severe disease and death across the United States. As a result, this requirement which was needed at an earlier stage in the pandemic may be withdrawn," it said.

Effective on Sunday at 12:01 a.m., air passengers will not need to get tested and show a COVID-19 test result or documentation of recovery from the disease prior to boarding a flight to the United States.

The CDC said it will continue to evaluate the state of the pandemic and will reassess the need for a testing requirement if the situation changes.

But it added that it continues to recommend that travelers boarding a flight to the United States get tested to check infection "as close to the time of departure as possible," which it defines as no more than three days, and not travel if they are sick.

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