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KDHE says counties can opt in for shorter quarantine periods

Coronavirus in Kansas

TOPEKA, Kan. (KSNW) — The Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) is leaving it up to counties to decide whether to follow new guidance about shorter quarantine periods for those exposed to COVID-19.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) still recommends that people quarantine for 14 days after exposure, but it has identified two acceptable alternatives. One is that a person can end quarantine after 10 days without a test and no symptoms. The other is the quarantine can end after 7 days with a test and no symptoms.

The KDHE says counties may choose to go with the shortened quarantine period, either 10 or 7 days with testing, or continue with the 14 days.

“KDHE continues to recommend the 14-day quarantine and monitoring after being exposed to COVID-19,” Dr. Lee Norman, KDHE Secretary, said in a news release. “The incubation for this disease is still 14 days. The guidance is being changed at a federal level to encourage more people to get tested and encourage better compliance with quarantines.”

The KDHE is not allowing the shorter quarantine periods for residents in long-term care and assisted facilities or in the Kansas prison system.

If you have to quarantine, the KDHE says you should check with your local health department for guidance.

7-Day Quarantine (Testing and No Symptoms) 

  • After exposure, individual must monitor symptoms daily or participate in Public Health monitoring for 7 days. 
  • If there are no symptoms during this time frame, on or after Day 5, the individual may get a PCR test (antigen and antibody tests are NOT allowed for this purpose).
  • If the test is negative and the person remains symptom-free, the individual can be removed from quarantine on or after Day 7. 
  • If Testing Results are pending on Day 7, the individual must not leave quarantine until results are received.

10-Day Quarantine (No Testing and No Symptoms) 

  • After exposure, you monitor yourself for symptoms daily or participate in Public Health monitoring for 10 days.
  • If you have no symptoms during the 10 days, you can be released from the quarantine without a test.

The KDHE is changing its computer systems to allow for the shorter quarantine periods. Until the change is complete, people who are in quarantine may still get monitoring calls.

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