May 26, 2020 - Health

When you can be around others after contracting the coronavirus

Illustration of a family isolated under glass.

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released new guidance over Memorial Day weekend outlining when Americans can stop self-isolating after contracting the novel coronavirus.

Why it matters: Nearly all states across the U.S. have relaxed stay-at-home orders to jumpstart economic reopenings, per a New York Times analysis. As more Americans venture outside their homes, they have to decide what precautions they're willing to take, and what they'll do to protect others.

Catch up quick:

  • After displaying COVID-19 symptoms, you can stop self-isolating after three days without fever and if symptoms — including chills, cough and shortness of breath — improve, and if at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
    • The CDC advises that immunocompromised people may have to stay home for more than 10 days.
  • If you test positive for COVID-19, but show no symptoms, you can be around others 10 days after your test.
  • If you have a weak immune system, you can socialize after testing negative for the coronavirus twice in a row, at least 24 hours apart.
  • If you have been in contact with someone with COVID-19, stay home for 14 days after that exposure.

What to watch: NIAD Director Anthony Fauci has advised states that are reopening "to be on the alert" for "little blips" of infections as stay-at-home restrictions are lifted.

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