CDC may add more testing to COVID-19 quarantine guidance: Fauci

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The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will consider new guidance that asks asymptomatic people infected with COVID-19 to test negative before leaving quarantine, Dr. Anthony Fauci said Sunday.

The White House’s chief medical advisor admitted to blowback and confusion after the health agency last week shortened COVID-19 isolation guidelines without a testing recommendation.

“You’re right, there has been some concern about why we don’t ask people at that five-day period to get tested. That is something that is now under consideration,” Fauci said on “This Week With George Stephanopoulos.”

“The CDC is very well aware that there has been some pushback about that. Looking at it again, there may be an option in that, that testing could be a part of that,” he added. “I think we’re going to be hearing more about that in the next day or so from the CDC.”

Fauci speaks at a COVID-19 daily press briefing.
The CDC lowered the number of days an infected person needs to stay in quarantine because “the likelihood of transmissibility is considerably lower in that second half of a 10-day period,” Fauci said.
AP Photo/Susan Walsh, File

Last week, CDC reduced its COVID-19 guidelines from 10 to five days of quarantine for asymptomatic people who test positive. After five days, the health agency recommends that people wear a mask around others at all times.

Fauci also explained the thinking behind the shortened self-isolation time on CNN’s State of the Union Sunday morning.

“The likelihood of transmissibility is considerably lower in that second half of a 10-day period,” he said. “And for that reason, the CDC made the judgment that it would be relatively low-risk to get people out.”

He added that the new guidance “has generated a number of questions” about testing after that five-day period.