Childcare setting quarantine rules change for vaccinated staff, children
If your child is vaccinated, they may not have to stay home from childcare after being exposed to someone with COVID-19, according to new guidance released Thursday from the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services.Posted — Updated
The new rules apply to adults and children fully vaccinated who come in contact with someone with COVID-19. For adults 18 years and older, a booster shot is required to be considered completely vaccinated. For those 5 to 17 years of age, booster shots are not required to be considered fully vaccinated.
A person may return in five days if they have no symptoms or symptoms are improving and have been fever free for 24 hours without use of fever reducing medications, but the person must continue to wear a mask for an additional five days to reduce the risk of infecting others.
Quarantine rules have also changed for people wearing masks when exposed to a COVID-19 positive person. Regardless of vaccination status, a person will not have to quarantine from a child care setting if the proper mask protocols were followed. That means both the COVID positive person and the possibly infected person each wore well-fitting masks covering the nose and mouth at all times.
If masks were not worn by both people and if the person is unvaccinated, some quarantine rules remain.
People who are unable to wear a mask, including children under the age of 2, cannot return to child care for 10 days after the last day of exposure.
Household members are not considered exposed once the COVID-19 positive person in their household has completed their isolation period. That would be five days if no symptoms or symptoms are improving, even if they are within the 10 days since their last positive test or symptom onset.
Previous rules required a quarantine of 14 days and, in some cases, negative COVID-19 tests before a child could return.
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