SAN DIEGO–The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention no longer recommends that employers require employees who tested positive for COVID-19 to be tested again before they can return to work, according to local public health officials. 

The CDC test-based strategy is no longer recommended to determine when to discontinue home isolation, except in certain circumstances.

People with COVID-19 who have mild to moderate symptoms and were directed to care for themselves at home may discontinue isolation under the following conditions:

At least 10 days have passed since symptoms began, have not had a fever for 24 hours without taking fever reducing medications and other symptoms have resolved.

A limited number of people who have severe or critical illness or are severely immunocompromised are recommended to wait 20 days after symptoms developed and one day after fever resolution and improving symptoms.

People who are severely immunocompromised but have no symptoms can leave isolation after 20 days after testing positive.

People who tested positive for the novel coronavirus but never developed symptoms can stop isolation and other precautions 10 days after the date of their first diagnostic positive test virus.

“Employers do not need to follow the test-based strategy for their employees to go back to work,” said Wilma Wooten, M.D., M.P.H., County public health officer. “Employers must ensure that employees have met the new criteria to be released from isolation.”

To date, 133 COVID-19 deaths and 1,054 cases (675 residents and 379 staff) have been reported in skilled-nursing facilities. Eighty-nine deaths and 1,074 cases (649 residents and 425 staff) have been reported in other congregate settings. In comparison, nine COVID-19 deaths and a total 981 cases have been reported in outbreaks in community settings.

The number of COVID-19 outbreaks in community settings continue to be reported throughout the region. About 120 COVID-19 outbreaks were confirmed in community settings since the pandemic began, 59 have been reported in July. The total has surpassed the 34 that were reported in June and the 27 that were confirmed during the first three months of the pandemic.