Isolation time for infection halved in the United States

Contact cases and people positive for the coronavirus, but asymptomatic, can now reduce their isolation time from ten to five days, US health authorities announced on Monday.

This change is “justified by science,” according to which the majority of infections occur in the two days before and three days after the onset of symptoms, explained the Centers for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC), main health agency in the United States, in a statement. “These updates allow everyone to continue their daily lives in a safe manner,” Rochelle Walensky, director of CDC, said in a statement.

Concerns about a paralysis of certain sectors

The Omicron variant, much more transmissible, is now the majority in the United States, and the number of cases is rising sharply in the country, to more than 200,000 daily cases over the last two days, approaching the record of last January . Officials are worried about the paralysis of certain economic sectors due to a lack of manpower. While halving the insulation for asymptomatic people, health authorities advise them to wear the mask within five days.

The quarantine period for unvaccinated contact cases is also reduced from 14 to 5 days, with the advice also to wear a mask strictly within the following five days. According to these recommendations, fully vaccinated contact cases do not need to self-isolate. On December 23, these authorities had already reduced the duration of isolation for caregivers.

A recommendation but not an obligation

The CDC recommendations serve as a benchmark and are widely followed in the United States, but they do not constitute a federal obligation.

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The sharp rise in the number of cases in the country, and the periods of isolation that go with it, have in recent days led airlines to cancel flights by the hundreds. On Monday morning, President Joe Biden acknowledged that hospitals across the country some hospitals across the country were “overwhelmed, in terms of equipment and staff,” but called on Americans not to “panic.”

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