As the COVID-19 landscape evolves and the Omicron variant pervades, state and local governments and health authorities have modified their recommendations, guidance, and regulations in an effort to manage the pandemic.

For example, on December 30, 2021, following the CDC’s December 27, 2021, changes to its quarantine and isolation recommendations, the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) issued “Guidance for Local Health Jurisdictions on Isolation and Quarantine of the General Public.” Among other things, the CDPH updated its guidelines to “align with the updated timeframes within the recent CDC update and recommend additional mitigation measures, including continued focus on testing and masking to best contain this more transmissible variant in our communities.” Likewise, on January 5, 2022, the CDPH issued “Guidance for the Use of Face Masks” wherein they are now “requiring masks be worn in all public settings, irrespective of vaccine status, until February 15, 2022.” The CDPH does note a few exemptions to the mask requirements.

Similarly, the San Francisco Department of Public Health has updated various guidelines. For example, on December 29, 2021, the department updated Health Order C19-07y, which, among other things, updated booster requirements for individuals working in “designated high-risk settings” and temporarily suspended certain exemptions to the indoor universal mask requirement until February 1, 2022. The department also updated its “Guidance for Isolation and Quarantine” on December 31, 2022, and January 5, 2022. The changes updated recommendations for the isolation and quarantine period and who needs to quarantine, defined “Up-to-Date on COVID-19 vaccination,” and updated its summary chart regarding isolation and quarantine.

Because the guidance and recommendations regarding COVID-19 are rapidly changing, employers should closely monitor federal, state, and local guidance to stay up to date.