CDC New Guidance Ends 5-Day COVID-19 Isolation Recovery Guideline

An illustration picture taken on February 20, 2022 shows a model using a SARS-CoV-2 Antigen Rapid Test contained in a Covid-19 Lateral Flow (LFT) self-test kit, in London. (Photo by Justin TALLIS / AFP) (Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images)
(Photo by JUSTIN TALLIS/AFP via Getty Images)

OAN’s Abril Elfi
9:18 AM – Saturday, March 2, 2024

The Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has stated that those recovering from COVID-19 no longer need to stay isolated for five days after symptoms end. 


According to updated recommendations from the CDC, people with COVID-19 should avoid contact with others and remain at home until at least 24 hours after their symptoms improve and they do not have a fever, without medication.

“Today’s announcement reflects the progress we have made in protecting against severe illness from COVID-19,” CDC Director Dr. Mandy Cohen said in a statement. “However, we still must use the common sense solutions we know work to protect ourselves and others from serious illness from respiratory viruses; this includes vaccination, treatment, and staying home when we get sick.”

They also stated that you should continue to wear a mask that fits properly, avoid close contact with people, get tested, and practice better hygiene during the five days that follow feeling better and not having a fever.

It was also mentioned that the guidelines were meant to be used in community settings rather than health care settings, such as nursing homes or hospitals, where the five-day isolation recommendation is still in place.

“We wanted to provide folks with an easy and understandable way to protect themselves. Folks who are more vulnerable to these viruses were top of mind as we put this guidance together. We all know someone who is vulnerable; it’s in my own family. So, it was very top of mind for me,” Cohen said. “Hand hygiene, ventilation masking, using tests—those are the things we want to use as additional strategies in those five days after your fever is gone and after your symptoms are improving.”

Cohen also stated that the CDC found a way to have both simple guidance and protection for those who are vulnerable.

“We know that if things are simple and people remember and use them,  it actually means that we will have less virus spread overall,” Cohen said.

The newer guidelines are in line with what the CDC has recommended for the flu “for decades,” the agency stated.

According to the CDC, there were 17,310 hospitalizations for COVID-19 per week, and the virus was a contributing factor in 2.1% of hospital deaths so far this year.

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