The past few months of the pandemic have posed a broad new set of challenges to officials as highly contagious strains of the novel coronavirus have been discovered. On top of doubling down on basic guidelines, top health officials have begun recommending a revival of some of the tactics used in the earliest days of the virus's arrival to slow its spread before enough vaccinations can be administered. Now, it appears that President Joe Biden is bringing back a previous COVID restriction by enacting travel bans for non-citizens arriving from certain countries—with some new places added to the list as well. Read on to see which nations are affected by the new policy, and for more on what you could be getting wrong with your PPE, check out The Most Popular Mask May Also Be the Least Effective, Study Finds. South Africa is the newest addition to the travel ban list. According to White House Officials, Biden has issued an executive order reviving entry bans for travelers arriving from the U.K., Ireland, Brazil, and a list of 26 European countries that currently allow open travel into their borders. But the recent announcement did change previous policy by adding an additional ban on travelers who have been to South Africa in the past 14 days, not including U.S. citizens or permanent residents, Reuters first reported. The new restriction goes into effect on Saturday, Jan. 30."We are adding South Africa to the restricted list because of the concerning variant present that has already spread beyond South Africa," Anne Schuchat, MD, the CDC's principal deputy director, told Reuters on Jan. 24, adding that the agency was "putting in place this suite of measures to protect Americans and also to reduce the risk of these variants spreading and worsening the current pandemic." Major travel restrictions were about to be lifted. The move to expand travel restrictions comes barely a week after former President Donald Trump had ordered existing travel restrictions in place on Brazil, the U.K., and Europe be lifted on Jan. 26. But with a global surge in COVID cases underway, officials in the newly installed administration have decided to backpedal on opening the borders—especially as a contagious variant discovered in South Africa that has currently been reported in more than 20 countries, so far sparing the U.S."With the pandemic worsening, and more contagious variants emerging around the world, this is not the time to be lifting restrictions on international travel," Jen Psaki, then-incoming White House press secretary said in a tweet on Jan. 18 . "On the advice of our medical team, the Administration does not intend to lift these restrictions on 1/26. In fact, we plan to strengthen public health measures around international travel in order to further mitigate the spread of COVID-19." And for more on what your symptoms could be telling you, check out These Are the Most Common Early Signs You Have COVID, Study Finds. Other travel restrictions are coming into effect. News of the revived and new travel restrictions also comes just as another new order comes into effect on Jan. 26 which requires all air travelers entering the United States from abroad to test negative for COVID-19 within three days of their flight or prove they've recovered from the virus. The order, which was announced by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on Jan. 12, requires airlines to confirm the test results and to deny boarding to anyone who fails to provide documentation."Testing does not eliminate all risk," then-CDC Director Robert Redfield, MD, said, "but when combined with a period of staying at home and everyday precautions like wearing masks and social distancing, it can make travel safer, healthier, and more responsible by reducing spread on planes, in airports, and at destinations." Officials hope to stop the spread of the South African COVID strain. Officials remained concerned that the South African variant is not only more contagious, but may also render natural immunity and current vaccines ineffective to protect against it. According to early research out of South Africa that found half of the patients in a study were reinfected by the new strain, Anthony Fauci, MD, told reporters on Jan. 21 that "we likely will be seeing is a diminution—more South Africa than U.K. … in what would be the efficacy of the vaccine-induced antibodies." However, he clarified that "that does not mean that the vaccines will not be effective."According to Fauci, "if you have a vaccine, like the Moderna and the Pfizer vaccine, that can suppress the virus at a dilution, let's say, of 1 to 1,000, and the mutant influences it by bringing it down to maybe 1 to 800, or something like that, you're still well above the line of not being effective. So there's that 'cushion' that even though it's diminished somewhat, it still is effective." And for more on how you can keep yourself safe, check out If This Is in Your Kitchen, Your COVID Death Risk May Be Even Higher.