The CDC launches quarantine and isolation calculators to prevent the spread of COVID-19
The CDC launches quarantine and isolation calculators to prevent the spread of COVID-19

The CDC launches quarantine and isolation calculators to prevent the spread of COVID-19

PRODUCTION – 19 January 2022, Bremen: ILLUSTRATION – A man stands by the open window of his apartment. (set up scene) Photo: Sina Schuldt / dpa (Photo by Sina Schuldt / photo alliance via Getty Images)

With all the do’s and don’ts of the COVID-19 pandemic, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has rolled out a new tool that will help those who have or have been exposed to the virus find out how long they must quarantine and isolate. .

The agency recently launched its “Quarantine and isolation calculator“on its website states that it is a” tool to help determine how long to isolate, quarantine or take other steps to prevent the spread of COVID-19. ”

Users will first choose whether they have tested positive or have had close contact with a person diagnosed with COVID-19. From there, they will choose if they have had symptoms and enter the date when they first appeared. The calculator will then provide a date for whether and when people can leave their homes or stop wearing their masks.

RELATED: The CDC shortens the COVID-19 quarantine recommendation to 5 days

According to the CDC, isolation distinguishes sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick. While quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they get sick.

Throughout the pandemic, the rules of quarantine and isolation have fluctuated.

Last December, U.S. health authorities cut isolation restrictions for asymptomatic Americans who get coronavirus from 10 to five days and correspondingly shortened the time close contacts need for quarantine. CDC officials said the guidance is consistent with growing evidence that people with coronavirus are most contagious in the two days before and three days after symptoms develop.

Prior to that, the agency relaxed the rules that previously encouraged healthcare professionals to stay out of work for 10 days if they tested positive. The new recommendations said workers could return to work after seven days if they test negative and have no symptoms. And the agency said the isolation period could be cut to five days or even less if there is a severe staff shortage.

RELATED: New CDC isolation, guidelines for quarantine initiates debate online, within the medical community

Those infected with COVID-19 should isolate themselves

The isolation rules are for people who are infected. They are the same for people who are unvaccinated, partially vaccinated, fully vaccinated or boosted.

They say:

– The watch starts on the day you test positive.

– An infected person should go into isolation for five days instead of the previously recommended 10 days.

– After five days, if you have no symptoms, you can return to normal activities, but you must wear a mask everywhere – even at home around others – for at least five more days.

– If you still have symptoms after isolation for five days, stay home until you feel better, then start your five days wearing a mask at all times.

RELATED: China puts most of Shanghai on COVID-19 lockdown

People should be quarantined if they have had close contact with a person infected with COVID-19

The quarantine rules are for persons who have been in close contact with an infected person, but have not themselves been infected.

For quarantine, the clock starts the day someone is warned that they may have been exposed to the virus.

Earlier, the CDC said people who were not fully vaccinated and who came into close contact with an infected person should stay home for at least 10 days.

Now the agency says only people who have been given booster shots can skip quarantine if they wear masks in any environment for at least 10 days.

That’s a change. Previously, people who were fully vaccinated – which the CDC has defined as having two doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine – could be quarantined.

Now people who got their first shot but not boosters are in the same situation as those who are partially vaccinated or not vaccinated at all: They can stop quarantine after five days if they wear masks in any environment for five days afterwards.

The CDC Guide is not a mandate; it is a recommendation to employers and state and local government officials.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. This story was reported from Los Angeles.

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