Experts say CDC’s latest guidelines pose barriers to some workers

By Yasmine Jumaa

January 7, 2022

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention issued new COVID-19 isolation and quarantine recommendations last week. Some experts say the guidelines will most likely disadvantage low-wage and frontline workers in Kentucky, where there is less access to paid sick leave than in other states.

The CDC cut the isolation time from 10 to five days for people who test positive and are either asymptomatic or have “resolving” symptoms.

Dr. Keisha Bentley-Edwards is an associate professor of medicine at Duke University’s School of Medicine. She said the CDC’s latest recommendations prioritize systems over people.

“A lot of it is seen as being tied to the economy, and not necessarily being tied to actual individual health and public health at large,” Bentley-Edwards said. “It’s about ‘How can we get people in grocery stores and pharmacies back to work as soon as possible?’”