The ACHD develops new quarantine guidelines


Marco Verch, under, Creative Commons 2.0

Concept quarantine alert with blurred doctor with mask and protective suit, doctor and isolation with yellow ribbons for quarantine.

Ana Winowich, Features Editor

Over the winter break, the Allegheny County Health Department (ACHD) developed new COVID-19 quarantine guidelines. 

If you tested positive for COVID-19, then the first thing you should do is isolate yourself. Avoid everyone and don’t leave your home unless it is for medical care. 

There is a new rule about having to quarantine for only five days instead of 14 days. For families, stay in a separate room and use a separate bathroom. Make sure to disinfect your frequently touched surfaces on a regular basis. Personal items shouldn’t be shared.

If your symptoms have improved after five days, then it is okay to leave your house, but you must wear a mask for an additional five days. If you still have a fever, then stay home until it goes away.

Make sure to notify people you were in close contact with as soon as you test positive. If someone was within six feet from you for 15 minutes or more– whether or not they had a mask on– then they are considered close contact. Ask the close contact people to quarantine and get tested.

If you were exposed and have been vaccinated either with the primary series or booster vaccine, then there are fewer restrictions. It is recommended to wear a mask around others for 10 days. Get a test five days after your exposure. If symptoms start to develop then get a test and stay at home.

Those who are unvaccinated or have completed the primary series over six months ago without a booster are more restricted. Those who qualify for this must stay home for five days. After they stay home, then they must continue to wear a mask around others for five days. Approximately after five days of your exposure, you should get a test. If symptoms start to develop then get a test and stay at home.

To be protective, keep staying six feet apart. Keep wearing your mask properly. Currently, the n95 masks offer the best protection but are harder to get. As the new Omicron variant spreads, cloth masks are less effective.