This week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued updated guidance that reduces the isolation period for someone who tests positive for COVID-19.
The Dubuque County Health Department, the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH), and the CDC are all in alignment regarding this guidance and beginning Monday, Jan. 10, the guidance allows individuals to return after 5 days as follows:
COVID-19 POSITIVE CASE / ISOLATION GUIDELINES
Based on guidance from the CDC, IDPH and Dubuque County Health Department, individuals who test positive for COVID-19 will be instructed to self-isolate for at least 5 calendar days following the onset of symptoms OR 5 calendar days following the date the positive test was administered if the individual is asymptomatic. (Day 0 is the first day of symptoms or the date the positive test was administered if asymptomatic.)
Individuals may return to school after the 5 calendar days if ALL THREE of the following are true:
- The individual’s symptoms are resolving or the individual continues to have no symptoms if asymptomatic
- The individual continues to wear a mask around others for an additional 5 calendar days
- The individual is fever free for 24 hours (one full day) without fever-reducing medication.
If all three of the requirements above are not met, an individual needs to isolate for the full 10 calendar days.
The guidance above will be provided to individuals who test positive for COVID-19 when they are contacted by the Dubuque County Health Department/Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) for contact tracing.
During the contact tracing process, the VNA will also give guidance for identified unvaccinated, household close contacts that their quarantine period will also be 5 calendar days with wearing a mask around others for an additional 5 calendar days.