NY Gov. shortens COVID quarantine to FIVE days for 'critical workers'

New York Governor Kathy Hochul shortens COVID quarantine to FIVE days for vaccinated ‘critical workers’

  • New York Governor Kathy Hochul officially shortened the COVID quarantine for fully-vaccinated ‘critical workers’ from 10 to five days on Friday 
  • Vaccinated workers may quarantine for five days if they are asymptomatic or showing resolving symptoms and have no fever for 72 hours without medication 
  • ‘We need you again, we need you to be able to go to work,’ she said during her address on Friday as industries have begun to see staffing shortages 
  • On Friday, New York reported 44,431 positive COVID cases and 4,744 COVID hospitalizations with 82.9% of all New Yorkers having at least one vaccine dose
  • The CDC cut the quarantine time from 10 to seven days for healthcare workers who are asymptomatic and can provide a negative test on Thursday
  • Hundreds of flights have been canceled across the country as airlines struggle to meet high holiday demands amid staffing shortages caused by COVID
  • Last week, CityMD closed 13 New York locations due to staffing shortages

New York Governor Kathy Hochul has officially shortened the quarantine for vaccinated ‘critical workers’ who test positive for COVID to five days. 

The governor made the announcement on Christmas Eve as the Omicron variant has caused a recent spike in positive cases, shutting down health care centers and hundreds of flights and keeping families apart for the holidays. 

New York’s new guidelines will allow fully vaccinated ‘critical workers’ to quarantine for only five days after testing positive for COVID if they are asymptomatic or showing resolving symptoms. They must also have not had a fever for 72 hours or be on medication and are required to wear a mask when they return to work. 

‘We want to make sure that our critical workforce who we’ve relied on from the beginning … that our workers can get back,’ Hochul said on Friday. 

‘And that includes our health care, elder care, home health care, sanitation, grocery stores, pharmacies, restaurants — you know who you are.

‘We need you again, we need you to be able to go to work,’ she said.  

On Friday, New York reported 44,431 positive COVID cases and 4,744 COVID hospitalizations. Ahead of the holidays the state reported 82.9 percent of all New Yorkers have at least one vaccine dose with the state administering 32,979,809 doses to date. 

Governor Kathy Hochul shortened the 10-day mandatory quarantine to five days for ‘critical workers’ on Christmas Eve as many industries have begun facing staffing shortages 

New York’s new guidelines will allow fully-vaccinated ‘critical workers’ to quarantine for five days if they are asymptomatic or showing resolving symptoms 

The CDC announced on Thursday that the quarantine time has been reduced to seven days for healthcare workers as staff shortages have hit the industry as COVID cases surge 

Hochul defended her response to the pandemic amid the recent holiday spike. 

‘We’re going to continue to spread holiday cheer, not COVID,’ Hochul said. 

‘We are going to keep things open. We’re going to do the right things, but we will not get complacent. We are going to get through this battle, my friends. We’re smart. We know how to do this. We’re not shutting down business. We’re not shutting down schools,’ she insisted. 

Hochul’s address also included a timeline of the safety measures she has implemented and the new plans she has to increase access to COVID testing and vaccines throughout the state. 

The newly appointed governor’s newest COVID guidelines and Christmas speech were presented as she works to maintain her position as a top contender for the gubernatorial race ahead of next year’s primary election.   

The surge in positive cases caused popular New York City urgent care center CityMD to shutter 13 of its locations across Brooklyn, Manhattan the Bronx and Queens due to staffing shortages amid the overwhelming demand. 

Lines of up to six hours formed outside many testing sites as people prepared for the holidays, with results that are supposed to be delivered within 48 hours now taking four or five days.

Gov. Hochul’s five day quarantine for ‘critical workers’ comes a day after the Center for Disease Control and Prevention announced that they were shortening the mandatory 10-day COVID quarantine to seven days for some workers. 

The CDC cut the quarantine time to seven days for healthcare workers who are asymptomatic and can provide a negative test, officials announced on Thursday. 

They also announced that fully vaccinated healthcare workers- those whose have had their booster shot- no longer have to quarantine after being exposed to COVID. 

Dr. Anthony Fauci had previously said that healthcare officials are considering lowering the quarantine to seven days for all Americans.  

The CDC’s changes come as healthcare systems have struggled with staffing shortages and follows after the U.K. changed their quarantine period to seven days for vaccinated people. 

The agency’s adjustments also comes after Delta Airlines Chief Executive Ed Bastian asked CDC Director Rochelle Walensky to reduce the 10-day quarantine to a week for all Americans in a letter co-signed by airline health and medical advisors. 

Bastian noted that 90 percent of Delta airline workers are fully vaccinated and that the current 10-day quarantine ‘may significantly impact our workforce and operations’ and Omicron COVID cases continue to surge.  

Airlines are already seeing the negative impacts of COVID surges and the 10-day quarantine as travel picks up around the holidays. 

More than 600 flights were canceled and nearly 2,500 flights were delayed on  Christmas Eve morning due to staffing shortages. 

Short staffing due to the breakthrough infections has led United Airlines to cancel at least 196 flights while Atlanta-based Delta said it canceled 171 and Jet Blue canceled 78 on Friday. 

More flight cancellations are expected throughout the next few days.  

Delta has already cancelled 247 flights for Christmas Day with United Airlines preemptively canceling 173 and Jet Blue canceling 75. 

The delays have thrown a wrench in many people’s holiday plans, while others had already been forced to stay home due to positive or delayed COVID tests. 

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