GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. — The Kent County Health Department (KCHD) has adjusted its guidelines on quarantine and isolation for residents who test positive for COVID-19 after the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) lowered its recommendations on Monday.
KCHD says residents who test positive for the virus need only to isolate for five days, adding they may exit isolation if symptoms end after five days. Individuals should continue to wear masks for five days after leaving isolation. These guidelines apply to vaccinated as well as unvaccinated individuals.
County residents who become exposed to those who test positive for COVID-19 are advised to follow the same guidelines above if they are unvaccinated or if more than six months have elapsed since receiving the second Pfizer or Moderna vaccine dose (or two months since receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine) and have not yet gotten a booster shot. The KCHD says those who have gotten a booster shot are not required to enter quarantine but should wear masks for a 10-day period following exposure.
Residents who may have been exposed to someone who tested positive for COVID-19 are encouraged to get tested five days after the exposure period. County health officials add those who undergo symptoms of COVID-19 while in quarantine should get tested and remain home until a negative test result is obtained.
“These new guidelines will mean less disruption to people’s lives and still slow the spread of the virus,” says Medical Director Dr. Nirali Bora. “However, COVID-19 cases and deaths remain unacceptably high. We encourage everyone who is eligible to get vaccinated and boosted as soon as possible.”
The new guidelines do not take the place of state or local guidance, county health officials say.
“Anyone who is experiencing symptoms should be tested as soon as possible,” Dr. Bora adds.