An update to the COVID-19 isolation and quarantine guidance makes getting back to work after COVID-19 illness or exposure much faster.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention based the change on data showing the majority of COVID-19 transmission occurs early in the course of illness. Like most changes to COVID-19 guidance, it’s complex.
So let’s break it down:
People who test positive for COVID-19 should isolate for five days regardless of vaccination status. If symptoms are gone or resolving after five days, the person can end isolation, but should continue wearing a mask around others for five additional days.
If symptoms are not gone or resolving, the person should remain at home. This is especially true if they’re running a fever. If a fever is present, continue to isolate until fever-free for 24 hours.
Guidelines for people who’ve been exposed to someone with COVID-19 are different depending on different levels of protection.
If you’ve received a COVID-19 booster shot, are within six months of your second Pfizer or Moderna shot or within two months of your Johnson & Johnson shot, you should wear a mask in public for 10 days after exposure and get tested five days after exposure. If any symptoms develop, get tested and stay away from others.
If you’re more than six months out from your second Pfizer or Moderna shot, more than two months out from your J&J shot or are unvaccinated, you should wear a mask for 10 days, quarantine for five days and get tested five days after exposure. If any symptoms develop, get tested and stay away from others.
Mesa County Public Health has aligned its guidance for people and businesses in Mesa County.
As we learn more about COVID-19, guidance will continue to change. We appreciate the flexibility and cooperation of the community as we battle the pandemic.
Stefany Busch is communications coordinator at Mesa County Public Health. Connect with Mesa County Public Health on Facebook at www.facebook.com/MesaCountyPublicHealth or on Twitter @MC_PublicHealth.