By Lauren Kulpa, Jill Ripke, and Brittany Sachs

 

On July 17, the CDC updated its guidance on when persons with COVID-19, or those who have symptoms of COVID-19, may discontinue home isolation. The updated three-part standard is less restrictive than its previous iteration. A summary of the evidence and rationale for these changes is described here.

Old Standard New Standard
At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared
At least 72 hours have passed since last fever without the use of fever-reducing medications At least 24 hours have passed since last fever without the use of fever-reducing medications
Respiratory symptoms have improved Symptoms have improved

 

This standard presumes that a person will not be tested again to determine if the person is negative for COVID-19. The CDC did not change its guidance on discontinuing home isolation for persons who tested positive for COVID-19 but did not experience symptoms. In those instances, the person may discontinue home isolation when at least 10 days have passed since the person’s first COVID-19 test that yielded a positive result, so long as the person never showed symptoms of COVID-19.