US halves isolation time for asymptomatic Covid infection
As the Omicron variant infects thousands across the globe, US health officials have decreased the recommended isolation time for people with asymptomatic Covid-19 infections by half. Instead of quarantining for 10 days, the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) states that individuals who are not experiencing symptoms of the virus may stay home for 5 days. The CDC bases this development on studies that show most transmissions happen in the two days before and three days after symptoms develop. However, experts have criticized the new regulations, including the lack of testing requirements to end isolation.
The sharp rise in cases has been fueled by the Omicron variant of the virus, which has become dominant in the US and is highly contagious. Although the variant is more transmissible, it is milder than previous variants. For those who are vaccinated, most patients experience little to no symptoms. The growing number of individuals across the world in isolation has put pressure on industries such as air travel, hospitality, and tourism. Thousands of flights booked for the holidays season were cancelled due to Covid-19 infections. The new guidance was announced as more than 200,000 daily infections were confirmed in the past two days nationwide.