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AMA: CDC quarantine and isolation guidelines are confusing and counterproductive

The following statement is attributable to:

Gerald E. Harmon, MD – President, American Medical Association

“Nearly two years into this pandemic, with omicron cases on the rise across the country, the American people should be able to count on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for timely, accurate, and clear advice. to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their communities. Instead, the new recommendations on quarantine and isolation are not only confusing, but risk spreading the virus further.

“Living during a pandemic is difficult, and what we learn along the way – and the data we collect – will necessarily change our course of action at times. According to the CDC’s own rationale for shortened isolation periods for the general public, approximately 31% of people remain infectious 5 days after a positive COVID-19 test. With hundreds of thousands of new cases per day and more than a million positive cases reported on January 3, tens of thousands – potentially hundreds of thousands of people – could return to work and school contagious if they follow new CDC guidelines on ending isolation after five years. days without a negative test. Doctors fear these recommendations will put our patients at risk and further overwhelm our health care system.

“A negative test should be required to end isolation after testing positive for COVID-19. Re-emerging without knowing their status unnecessarily risks further transmission of the virus.

“Availability of tests remains a challenge in many parts of the country, including in hospitals, and we urge the administration to pull all available levers to accelerate the production and distribution of tests. But the lack of testing at the moment does not justify omitting a testing requirement to emerge from a now-shortened isolation.

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