Theare drawing some criticism from medical consultants for not requiring a adverse take a look at for asymptomatic sufferers to go away isolation. Some have speculated the dearth of a testing requirement is because of a brief provide of assessments within the U.S.
But CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky mentioned Wednesday that is not the case.
“This really had nothing to do with supply. It had everything to do with knowing what we would do with the information when we got it,” she mentioned on “CBS Mornings,” explaining that it is unclear ifpresent helpful info later within the an infection interval.
The new steerage says individuals who take a look at constructive for, however haven’t any signs, can depart isolation after 5 days with out testing once more. They ought to put on a masks for the following 5 days, the CDC mentioned.
“What we do know is about 85% to 90% of viral transmission happens in those first five days, which is why we really want people to stay home during that period of time,” Walensky mentioned. “And then mask for the rest of the time to capture that last 10% to 15%.”
On why a adverse take a look at isn’t required to go away isolation, Walensky mentionedwould “not be viable” as a result of they’ll detect remnants of the virus for as much as 12 weeks, even after an individual is now not contagious.
As for antigen assessments, that are much less delicate than PCR, medical consultants do not know if they’ll decide if somebody will transmit the virus towards the top of a interval of an infection, Walensky mentioned.
“We know it performs really well during that period where you’re initially infected, but the FDA has not at all looked at whether … your positive antigen really does correlate with whether you’re transmissible or not.”
So, even when somebody assessments adverse with an antigen take a look at after 5 days of isolation, the CDC would nonetheless urge them to put on a masks to forestall potential unfold.
“Since it wasn’t going to make a difference in our recommendations, we did not recommend an antigen at that period of time,” Walensky mentioned.
However, she mentioned antigen assessments are “absolutely” really useful for people who’re uncovered to somebody who has COVID-19. They ought to take a look at 5 days after publicity or in the event that they get signs, the CDC advises.
Dr. Celine Gounder, an infectious illness specialist at NYU and Bellevue hospitals, criticized the FDA for not additional assessing antigen assessments.
“Frankly, the FDA has had two years to do these assessments that Dr. Walensky is referring to: whether they’re as good to make that initial diagnosis to say you’re contagious as they are for saying you are no longer contagious,” Gounder mentioned Wednesday on “CBS Mornings.” “They’ve had two years and have been dragging their feet for two years.”
Gounder additionally famous that the U.S. would not at present have sufficient fast antigen assessments and mentioned she believes that’s “driving the decision not to include [testing] as part of the protocol.”
At-home antigen assessments arewithout cost within the U.Ok., and the Biden administration has vowed to and distribute free assessments within the U.S. within the coming weeks.