The guidance modifies the quarantine restrictions for fully vaccinated individuals who were exposed to COVID-19. The guidance is a small sign of progress for many EMS organizations who have been on the frontlines of the pandemic.
Under the most recent guidance, those individuals who are fully vaccinated (defined as those who are two weeks following the second dose administration), are within three months following the last dose in the series and have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure, are not required to quarantine. Individuals who do not meet all three criteria, must follow the current quarantine guidance. The guidance recommends that individuals who meet all three criteria should continue to monitor for COVID-19 related symptoms for two weeks following the exposure. If symptoms develop, individuals should be tested.
Many EMS organizations have inquired if the administration of the COVID-19 vaccination to their workforce modifies the state-level mask mandates or other bloodborne/airborne pathogen protection practices or procedures that are currently in place at EMS organizations or other healthcare facilities. While the roll-out of the vaccination is a step in the direction of returning to a “new normal”, employers should know that this does not modify any existing COVID-19 related restrictions or requirements. Employees should continue to wear masks, socially distance, and follow all other COVID-19 recommended safety precautions. We will keep you informed of updates to the guidance by the CDC and other regulatory agencies. Be sure to visit the CDC’s website for more information on the current CDC guidance for COVID-19 or the COVID-19 vaccination. As always, please contact me if you have questions or need assistance.