The CDC Is Now Saying the 14-Day Quarantine Can Be Shortened

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Posted: Dec 02, 2020 4:40 PM
The CDC Is Now Saying the 14-Day Quarantine Can Be Shortened

Source: AP Photo/Gregory Bull

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is now saying the 14-day recommended quarantine time for those who may have been exposed to the Wuhan coronavirus can be shortened. The new recommendation was part of winter guidance issued by the CDC amid an ongoing surge in coronavirus cases across the nation. 

While CDC officials say the 14-day quarantine remains ideal, officials also say the recommended quarantine time can be shortened to 10 days for a person who doesn't take a test for the virus and down to seven days for a person who receives a negative test result. 

According to The Hill, the new recommendation is the result of a continued effort to boost compliance and the result of extensive modeling that found a lower risk of people spreading the virus in the final days of quarantine. 

"All of these point to the same direction which is that we can safely reduce the length of quarantine, but accepting there is a small residual risk that a person who is leaving quarantine early could transmit to someone else if they become infectious," John Brooks, the CDC's chief medical officer for their COVID-19 response said on a call with reporters. 

On Wednesday, CDC officials reiterated their call on Americans to forgo holiday travel plans, pointing to high traffic around Thanksgiving Day, and issued further recommendations for those who insist on traveling in the coming weeks. 

Travelers are urged to get tested one to three days before departing and avoid nonessential activities for one week following their return. Travelers are advised to quarantine for 10 days upon their return if they don't get tested for COVID-19 and seven days if they test negative. Travelers are also encouraged to wear face masks and practice social distancing while away.