Earlier this month, the California Department of Public Health updated its COVID-19 public health Order and guidance regarding isolation/quarantine and face-covering recommendations. Here is a link.
The new isolation/quarantine recommendations follow the CDC’s guidance. This part of the Order was effective on March 13, 2023. Here are the key changes:
- Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 should isolate for five days but may leave isolation after five days if they are feeling well, their symptoms are improving, and they are fever-free for 24 hours. A negative test after five days is not required.
- “Infectious period” is now defined as follows:
- For symptomatic confirmed cases, two days before the confirmed case had any symptoms (Day 0 is the first day of symptoms) through Days 5–10 after symptoms first appeared, and 24 hours have passed with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications improvement in the symptoms.
- For asymptomatic confirmed cases, two days before the positive specimen collection date (Day 0 is the collection date) through Day 5 after the collection date.
Cal/OSHA’s “Non-Emergency Regulation” incorporates the CDPH’s definition of “infectious period,” so it’s probably worth revising your COVID-19 return-to-work policies.
Face Covering Rules
Effective April 3, 2023, the CDPH’s face-covering guidance are only “recommendations.” The updated guidance also eliminates the face covering requirements for specified high-risk settings, and provides that COVID-19 positive individuals may remove their masks prior to Day 10 if they do not have a fever, their symptoms are improving, and they have two consecutive negative tests at least one day apart. Because nothing is easy, however, Cal/OSHA still requires COVID-19 positive individuals to wear a face covering for 10 days after their symptoms first appear or their first positive test. Sigh.
Yes, it’s time for ANOTHER review of your COVID-19 practices to ensure you are in compliance. It pays to stay up-to-date.
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