Michigan changes guidance on COVID-19 quarantine length

Only 10 days of isolation will be required in most cases
Published: Dec. 4, 2020 at 12:22 PM EST
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LANSING, Mich. (WJRT) - Michigan residents under quarantine for possible COVID-19 infections may not have to stay in isolation as long.

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services updated coronavirus quarantine guidelines for the state based on new recommendations issued from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Wednesday.

Data shows that 99% of all COVID-19 illnesses begin within 10 days of exposure, so state health officials have reduced Michigan’s quarantine guideline to 10 days after close exposure to a confirmed case of coronavirus. Patients should continue monitoring for symptoms for four additional days, however.

Previous guidance from the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services called for a 14-day quarantine after exposure to a confirmed case of COVID-19. That guidance was based on early information about coronavirus, which indicated the incubation period is 14 days.

Michigan residents can be released from quarantine after 10 days if:

  • They have no symptoms or clinical evidence of COVID-19.
  • They continue monitoring for COVID-19 symptoms for four additional days.

“We are basing this recommendation on scientific data from CDC and offering the opportunity to reduce the quarantine period to 10 days in certain circumstances,” said Dr. Joneigh Khaldun, chief medical executive and chief deputy for health. “Public health officials can still require the 14-day period, as this option most greatly mitigates the possibility of transmission.”

The Michigan Department of Health and Human Services is considering further reductions in the quarantine timeline based on concerns over shortages of coronavirus diagnostic tests and longer wait times for results.

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