CDC considering shortening quarantine time for COVID-19 exposure

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(WIAT) — The CDC is considering changing its quarantine guidelines for people that have come into contact with COVID-19. Current guidelines mandate a 14-day quarantine for those exposed, even if you test negative.

The guideline change would reduce the 14-day quarantine to 7-10 days for those exposed to COVID-19. Officials said with diagnostic testing available, and more widely available, a shorter quarantine may be possible.

“You know, if you find out you’ve been exposed, but it doesn’t meet the criteria for a significant exposure and you want to try to take a chance and be with family, it really does allow good access for a pretty reliable answer,” said Dr. Amy Bentley-Illescas; Board Certified Internist.

Bentley-Illescas has been on the frontlines of this pandemic, offering drive-up testing at her practice. She said, if the CDC does change quarantine guidelines for COVID exposure, more people may follow it.

“I think people have really good intentions,” said Bentley-Illescas. “But if you could give them an option, with a little more certainty that they are safe, I think it would help increase their compliance with quarantine.”

The Jefferson County Health Department is warning families this Thanksgiving, don’t let your guard down, even if you’ve already had and recovered from the coronavirus.

“Just because you go it before doesn’t mean you can’t get it again,” said Dr. David Hicks. “So you still have to wear the mask, social distance.”

Hicks said if we want to enjoy the holidays for years to come, six feet apart is better than six feet under.

“If we spread COVID-19 and give it to the wrong person at the wrong time, in a couple of weeks, that person could be in the ICU, in the hospital, or dead,” said Hicks.

Until new guidelines are formally announced, for people that have had close contact with COVID-19, the CDC mandates a 14-day quarantine, and you can’t test out of staying at home.


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