(ST. JOSEPH, Mo.) The City of St. Joseph Health Department announced Friday that, effective immediately, it has amended its quarantine guidance for people exposed to COVID-19 following the announcement of new guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) earlier this week.
The new guidelines provide an option for a 10-day quarantine or seven-day quarantine with a negative test after day 5.
"The City of St. Joseph Health Department is amending to these updated guidelines in recognition of the needs of our community," the health department stated in a news release.
According to the health department, contact tracers will advise COVID-19 cases to educate their close contacts to quarantine for 14 days if possible. The close contact may end quarantine after ten days if they have had no symptoms during quarantine, resuming regular activity on day 11.
A third option will be to test on or after day five but remain in quarantine through day seven, only resuming regular activity on day eight if the test results are negative and the contact has had no symptoms.
"Public health interventions are used to protect the health of the community. Quarantine is a tool to reduce the risk of transmission of communicable diseases. The goal of this public health policy is to balance the protective benefits of the act of quarantining with the impact quarantine may have on individuals and families," the news release stated.
Officials said this guidance does not apply to nursing facilities or long-term care facilities.
On Friday, the health department reported a total of 6,607 positive coronavirus cases since the pandemic began with 86 deaths.
Buchanan County's positivity rate is 25 percent.
More information about the new CDC guidance can be found here.