Home Bensalem Times Dept. of Health aligns quarantine guidance for fully vaccinated individuals with CDC...

Dept. of Health aligns quarantine guidance for fully vaccinated individuals with CDC recommendations

Those who have received both doses don’t have to quarantine after an exposure to COVID-19 if they meet certain criteria

The Department of Health announced that it has aligned its COVID-19 quarantine guidance for fully vaccinated individuals with that of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

“We know that Pennsylvanians are eager to get vaccinated and be further protected from COVID-19,” said Acting Secretary of Health Alison Beam. “As the CDC continues to update guidance for individuals who are fully vaccinated, we will follow their lead. I want to stress, though, that regardless of vaccination status, individuals who are showing new or unexplained symptoms of COVID-19 still need to isolate and be tested for COVID-19.”

Under the updated guidance, people who have had both doses of a two-dose vaccine, or one dose of a single-dose vaccine, do not need to quarantine after an exposure to another person with COVID-19 if they meet all the following criteria:

– They are fully vaccinated (i.e., more than two weeks following the receipt of the second dose in a two-dose series, or of one dose of a single-dose vaccine)
– They are within three months following receipt of the last dose in the series
– They have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure

This does not mean the vaccine is only effective for three months, but rather that it is unclear how long immunity from the vaccine will last. The CDC is utilizing what is known about natural post-infection immunity and limiting the quarantine guidance to 90 days at this time while additional research is conducted.

This guidance applies to the general population, including businesses, schools and some healthcare settings as a way to alleviate staffing shortages. It does not apply to patients or residents in healthcare settings. More information for healthcare settings about vaccinated healthcare workers and patients can be found here.

Close contacts who have not been fully vaccinated, or who do not meet all of the above criteria, must follow existing quarantine guidance. More information is here.

Because no vaccine is 100 percent effective, the department and CDC discourage any nonessential travel, even for people who are fully vaccinated. Additionally, there are new circulating strains of COVID-19 in other states and countries that are being investigated, and vaccine effectiveness on these variant strains is not fully known.

The department continues to recommend COVID-19 prevention measures, regardless of vaccination status, such as masking, physical distancing and practicing good hand hygiene.

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