The CDC says people who are fully vaccinated can skip quarantine — with caveats

Feb 11, 2021

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If you’ve been fully vaccinated, you might be able to skip quarantine even if you’ve been in contact with someone who has been infected.

According to an update from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), fully vaccinated people will no longer be required to quarantine after being exposed to someone with COVID-19 if they meet all the criteria.

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To meet these criteria, a person must be fully vaccinated, be within three months following receipt of the last dose in the series and have remained asymptomatic since exposure. But even if you choose to skip quarantine, the CDC still recommends following current guidance and monitoring for signs of COVID-19.

“Individual and societal benefits of avoiding unnecessary quarantine may outweigh the potential but unknown risk of transmission, and facilitate the direction of public health resources to persons at highest risk for transmitting SARS-CoV-2 to others,” the CDC update reads.

However, the update only offers guidance for vaccinated people who have had contact with an infected person — not vaccinated people with travel plans. Currently, the recommendation for all travelers from the CDC is to stay home and self-quarantine for seven days, even with a negative COVID-19 test. We’ve reached out to the CDC and will provide an update when we hear back.

The news followed new research, also from the CDC, that found that double masking could reduce exposure to COVID-19. According to the CDC, exposure to COVID-19 was reduced by up to 96.4% when both an infected person and a noninfected person were fitted with double masks or knotted and tucked masks.

Related: Double-masking offers more protection from COVID-19, says CDC

The research also found that knotting the ear loops of a surgical mask where they attach to the mask’s edges and then tucking in and flattening the extra material close to the face could improve these masks’ fit.

Featured photo by CHANDAN KHANNA/AFP via Getty Images

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