AMA Slams CDC’s New COVID-19 Quarantine Guidance

AMA President Gerald E. Harmon, M.D. said that a negative COVID-19 test should be required for ending isolation after a person tests positive for the virus.

AMA Slams CDC’s New COVID-19 Quarantine Guidance

The American Medical Association (AMA) is criticizing the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s (CDC) new COVID-19 guidance on quarantine and isolation.

On Wednesday, AMA President Gerald E. Harmon, M.D. said that a negative COVID test should be required for ending isolation after a person tests positive for the virus.

Here is Harmon’s statement:

“Nearly two years into this pandemic, with Omicron cases surging across the country, the American people should be able to count on the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for timely, accurate, clear guidance to protect themselves, their loved ones, and their communities. Instead, the new recommendations on quarantine and isolation are not only confusing, but are risking further spread of the virus.

“Living during a pandemic is challenging, and what we learn along the way—and data we collect—will necessarily change our course of action at times. According to the CDC’s own rationale for shortened isolation periods for the general public, an estimated 31 percent of people remain infectious 5 days after a positive COVID-19 test. With hundreds of thousands of new cases daily and more than a million positive reported cases on January 3, tens of thousands—potentially hundreds of thousands of people—could return to work and school infectious if they follow the CDC’s new guidance on ending isolation after five days without a negative test. Physicians are concerned that these recommendations put our patients at risk and could further overwhelm our health care system.

“A negative test should be required for ending isolation after one tests positive for COVID-19. Reemerging without knowing one’s status unnecessarily risks further transmission of the virus.

“Test availability remains a challenge in many parts of the country, including in hospitals, and we urge the administration to pull all available levers to ramp up production and distribution of tests. But a dearth of tests at the moment does not justify omitting a testing requirement to exit a now shortened isolation.”

About the Author

Robin Hattersley Gray
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Robin has been covering the security and campus law enforcement industries since 1998 and is a specialist in school, university and hospital security, public safety and emergency management, as well as emerging technologies and systems integration. She joined CS in 2005 and has authored award-winning editorial on campus law enforcement and security funding, officer recruitment and retention, access control, IP video, network integration, event management, crime trends, the Clery Act, Title IX compliance, sexual assault, dating abuse, emergency communications, incident management software and more. Robin has been featured on national and local media outlets and was formerly associate editor for the trade publication Security Sales & Integration. She obtained her undergraduate degree in history from California State University, Long Beach.

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