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Dawn Canova, clinical manager for outpatient wound care at Carroll Hospital, takes samples from people to test them for the coronavirus at a drive-thru station in the hospital's parking garage. Photo: Getty Images.
Dawn Canova, clinical manager for outpatient wound care at Carroll Hospital, takes samples from people to test them for the coronavirus at a drive-thru station in the hospital's parking garage. Photo: Getty Images.

CDC shortens quarantine times, as new COVID cases increase

After a weekend of holiday celebrations, many are in search of COVID testing with some showing symptoms of infection.

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Sick time shortenings are leaving many people baffled after a weekend of Christmas gatherings.

New cases spiked at the beginning of the week in several states. COVID-19 testing sites have reported difficulty in having sufficient staff available, as waves of people line up at in-person and drive-thru sites reaching max capacity.

“We can only accept 125 people because of the amount of cases that have been increasing,” Jose Gandulla, of Oak Street Health, told CBS Philly. “We reached our capacity before it even started and simply for logistical reasons that we cannot step beyond that number.”

People are advised to check in with a few testing sites for their operating status. 

This is happening amid the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) releasing new quarantine regulations on Monday, Dec. 27 for the general public.

This decision has caused both surprised and confused responses from those looking to test on Tuesday and those who are still recovering from the virus’ symptoms.

The CDC’s policy update says quarantine time for testing positive will reduce from 10 days to 5 days, and then will follow 5 days of wearing a mask around others.

For anyone vaccinated (without a booster) or unvaccinated and exposed to COVID, they are recommended to isolate for 5 days as well, and then proceed with wearing a mask.

Delta Airlines CEO Ed Bastian faces an uproar of criticism on Twitter for issuing a letter to the CDC urging them to reduce quarantine for the vaccinated workforce.

Some wonder if Bastian’s involvement may have influenced the CDC to reconsider COVID protocols, and the decision placing money over public health by risking sick people to return to work. 

The rapid number of positive COVID cases this December doubled from last winter in 2020, according to the Philadelphia Health Department. Philly currently sees 1,407 new cases per day. 

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