The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) quietly updated its testing guidance for fully vaccinated persons, recommending they receive a test 3-5 days after being exposed to someone who has the Chinese coronavirus and wear a mask as they await their test results.
The CDC completely backtracked on Tuesday in terms of its guidance for vaccinated individuals. While it previously said they no longer needed to wear masks, the federal health agency reversed course, instructing fully vaccinated individuals to wear masks “indoors in public if you are in an area of substantial or high transmission.”
The CDC also updated its testing guidance. While it previously dismissed the need for fully vaccinated people to take additional precautions, such as getting tested, after being exposed to someone with the virus if he or she was not exhibiting symptoms, the agency is now recommending vaccinated people to get tested 3-5 days after being exposed to the virus, regardless. Additionally, the CDC instructs the fully vaccinated individual to wear a mask as they await their results.
“If you’ve been around someone who has COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus], you should get tested 3-5 days after your exposure, even if you don’t have symptoms,” the CDC said.
“You should also wear a mask indoors in public for 14 days following exposure or until your test result is negative. You should isolate for 10 days if your test result is positive,” it adds.
Additionally, the CDC guidance states [emphasis original]:
- You do NOT need to get tested before leaving the United States unless your destination requires it.
- You still need to show a negative test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding an international flight to the United States.
- You should still get tested 3-5 days after international travel.
- You do NOT need to self-quarantine after arriving in the United States.
The White House has been unable to explain how the CDC’s updated guidance does not undermine its vaccine messaging.
“If vaccines work…then why do people who have the vaccine need to now wear masks?” Peter Doocy of Fox News asked White House press secretary Jen Psaki on Tuesday.
“The public health leaders in our administration have made the determination, based on data, that that is a way to make sure they’re protected,” Psaki said.