The Thurston Health Officer details the latest changes to the COVID guidelines

The instructions for COVID-19 have changed as new options have emerged and understanding has improved. In a letter to the community published last week, Terston County Health Officer Dimiana Abdelmalek offered updated recommendations for residents.

While the number of cases is there began to declinedisease activity remains higher than in any previous wave due to the more transmissible Omicron variant.

“As Thurston County and Washington State recover from the Amicron surge, and as our hospital becomes more manageable, we expect further changes in mitigation measures,” Abdelmalek said in a letter. “In the meantime, please continue to disguise to reduce disease transmission in Thurston County.

Such changes have already begun. In late December, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention updated the isolation and quarantine guidelines for some people.

And on Wednesday, Gov. Jay Insley announced that the state would put the mask into effect outdoors canceled on 18 February. Meanwhile, government officials are actively considering whether to cancel mandates for indoor masks.

Insulation Guide

In December, the CDC reduced the recommended isolation period from 10 to five days, regardless of vaccination status, for members of the public who meet certain criteria.

They should not have suppressed immunity, they did not have severe illness, they had a significant improvement in symptoms and the fever subsided for at least 24 hours without the use of antipyretic drugs.

“People with severe illnesses and people with moderate and severe reduced immunity have a higher risk of infection for more than 10 days and should be isolated for at least 20 days,” Abdelmalek said in a letter.

A person who meets these criteria should be isolated at home for five days if he or she develops symptoms or if he or she tests positive for COVID-19. After this period they should strictly disguise around others.

“Since a minority of people can still be contagious after the fifth day, even if their symptoms improve, it is important to continue wearing a well-fitting mask for an additional five days when close to other people to prevent further spread,” the letter said. . .

The CDC has changed this guide, citing data showing that most people with mild disease are not contagious after five days.

However, some experts have since pushed away from this change because of its complexity and because the CDC did not recommend testing at the end of the isolation period.

Quarantine Guide

In December, the CDC also reduced the quarantine period to five days for people who have not been vaccinated or are unaware of their vaccinations.

Such people should go to quarantine at home if they have been exposed to COVID-19 and can become infected. Quarantine can turn into isolation if a person develops symptoms or a positive virus test.

In his letter, Abdelmalek links this change to studies showing the incubation period or time it takes for a person to become infected, and the Omicron variant can be as little as 2-4 days.

Similar to isolation, a five-day quarantine period should be followed by five days of strict camouflage because it is likely that the incubation period in some people may be longer.

According to Abdelmalek, quarantine is not required for people who are aware of vaccinations, including additional doses, and remain asymptomatic. However, they should still wear a well-fitting mask around the others for five days.

“Testing for COVID-19 with antigen or PCR is recommended on or after the fifth day of exposure,” the letter said. “Everyone with COVID-19 symptoms should stay home and get tested for COVID-19.”

Although these guidelines apply to the majority of the population, the recommendations may vary depending on the person’s situation and other risk factors. For example, 10-day isolation and quarantine is still recommended for people living or working in congregations.

Sectoral instructions for health professionals, schools, kindergartens and other institutions can be found on the website Terston County Health and Social Services website.

Guide to camouflage

The current state of Washington on masks requires that people ages 5 and older wear masks in public indoors and at large outdoor events with 500 or more people, such as sporting events, fairs and concerts, regardless of vaccination status.

Although some other states have already revoked their mask mandates, Washington state mandates are still in effect. However, change seems to be on the horizon.

The state plans to cancel its mandate for outdoor masks on Feb. 18, but plans to repeal the indoor mask mandate are still under discussion. Earlier, the Olympian reported.

The CDC recommends wearing the most protective mask, which is also well suited and which can be worn constantly.

Loose fabric masks provide less protection than multi-layer thin masks, According to the Centers for Disease Control. Well-suited disposable surgical masks provide better protection than fabric masks.

For even better protection, the CDC recommends masks KN95 and N95.

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