HUNTSVILLE, Ala. (WAFF) - The Alabama Department of Public Health is making changes to their COVID-19 quarantine guidelines.
ADPH officials say the length of home quarantine for people with expected close contacts to COVID-19 cases can end after then 10th day for some individuals without testing, so long they do not have COVID-19 symptoms during the monitoring period.
This change is effective December 11.
The CDC offered states the option of ending quarantine after seven days with testing, but ADPH determined this option is not feasible at this time due to significant community spread that is not adequately mitigated, high case numbers, the increasing COVID-19 positivity rate in Alabama, and disparities and shortages in testing availability in areas of the state.
In cases in which the 10-day option is taken, quarantined people must follow these additional requirements:
· Daily symptom monitoring must not show any clinical evidence of COVID-19 throughout the full 10 days of quarantine.
· Daily symptom monitoring past 10 days must continue through quarantine Day 14; and,
· Persons must strictly adhere to all recommended non-pharmaceutical interventions through quarantine Day 14. They must immediately self-isolate and contact their local public health department or healthcare provider to report if symptoms develop at any time after their last known exposure, and testing should be considered with any of the following symptoms: Fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea.
Health officials caution that the 10-day quarantine option is not without risk, and a 14-day quarantine is optimal.