By Danielle Dawson and Andrea Figueroa Briseño
Late last week, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention relaxed COVID isolation guidelines, signaling a move by government agencies to issue public health policies that stand the greatest chances of actually being followed by a population that is growing COVID-weary.
Under the new recommendations, the onus of mitigation lies with individuals to take measures to prevent serious infection, easing requirements such as isolation for those exposed to the virus regardless of vaccination status.
The new guidelines boil down to a shift in preventative measures that move away from curbing overall transmission, rather focusing on severe health outcomes like hospitalization and death.
These new guidelines come as more than 100,000 San Diego Unified students prepare to head back to school at the end of August, prompting the district to roll back many of its safety precautions — measures that were previously regarded as some of the most robust in the county.
The announcement also came on the heels of San Diego County’s move back into the “medium-risk” level of the CDC’s community level tracking system given slowing transmission rates in the region.
Experts say that these changes are an attempt to allow people to adapt in a way that allows them to move past pandemic-era restrictions, while accepting that COVID will continue to be around for the foreseeable future.
“This guidance acknowledges that the pandemic is not over, but also helps us move to a point where COVID-19 no longer severely disrupts our daily lives,” Greta Massetti, an epidemiologist with the CDC, said in a press release announcing the modification.
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