People who have been fully vaccinated against coronavirus -- meaning they have recieved two doses of either the Pfizer/BioNTech or Moderna vaccine-- can skip quarantine if they are exposed to someone infected with the virus, the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Wednesday.
“Fully vaccinated persons who meet criteria will no longer be required to quarantine following an exposure to someone with COVID-19,” the CDC said in updates to its webpage with guidance on vaccination.
“Vaccinated persons with an exposure to someone with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 are not required to quarantine if they meet all of the following criteria,” the CDC added.
The criteria: They must be fully vaccinated – having had both shots with at least two weeks having passed since the second shot. But the CDC says protection may wear off after three months, so people who had their last shot three months ago or more should quarantine if they are exposed. They also should quarantine if they show symptoms, the CDC said.
“This recommendation to waive quarantine for people with vaccine-derived immunity aligns with quarantine recommendations for those with natural immunity, which eases implementation,” the CDC said.
People who have been vaccinated should still watch for symptoms for 14 days after they have been exposed to someone who is infected, the CDC said.
“At this time, vaccinated persons should continue to follow current guidance to protect themselves and others, including wearing a mask, staying at least 6 feet away from others, avoiding crowds, avoiding poorly ventilated spaces, covering coughs and sneezes, washing hands often, following CDC travel guidance, and following any applicable workplace or school guidance, including guidance related to personal protective equipment use or SARS-CoV-2 testing,” the agency said.