Criticism as US regulator CDC loosens Covid guidelines: ‘Blood on hands…’

Updated on Aug 12, 2022 11:20 AM IST

US Covid cases: In two years, the United States has logged over 58 crore cases and 64 lakh deaths due to the virus.

The US CDC has announced new guidelines. (File Photo / REUTERS)
The US CDC has announced new guidelines. (File Photo / REUTERS)
By, New Delhi

Over the last two years, the United States has seen coronavirus wreaking havoc while the world witnessed the worst of the pandemic in one of the world’s most developed nations. Amid the spread of virus and its mutation still a matter of concern, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has taken a step forward in loosening the restrictions.

“We’re in a stronger place today as a nation, with more tools—like vaccination, boosters, and treatments—to protect ourselves, and our communities, from severe illness from COVID-19,” said Greta Massetti, PhD, MPH, MMWR author in a statement by the CDC. Stressing that the country has a better “understanding of how to protect people from being exposed to the virus, like wearing high-quality masks, testing, and improved ventilation,” she added, “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.”

In one of the important changes that have been announced, the new CDC guidelines say those exposed to the virus do not need to quarantine. Instead, in such cases, people have been told to wear a high-quality mask for 10 days and get tested on the fifth day. Also children exposed to Covid don’t have to get a negative test.

“These updates make it easier for schools to assess their risk and make necessary action to protect students and staff,” Greta Massetti. Staying at least six feet apart is no longer among the guidelines in a big shift, according to a CNN report.

However, the change in guidelines has drawn criticism. Eric Feigl-Ding, a top epidemiologist, has been tweeting sharp reactions. “Any @CDCgov employee working on COVID who does not agree with the @CDCDirector’s new COVID guidelines today should resign immediately. Or else your role in this anti-public health farce will be remembered in history that you did nothing when “the CDC has blood on its hands,” he wrote in a tweet.

He also drew contrast between the FDA (Food and Drug Administration) and the CDC guidelines. "BREAKING—the @US_FDA just advised people to perform repeat/serial testing following a negative result on any at-home #COVID19 antigen test, regardless **whether or not you have symptoms**. This now also totally destroys @CDCDirector’s bogus @CDCgov 5-day zero-test-exit rule."

In its new guidelines, the CDC has highlighted that if you test Covid positive, and you no longer have symptoms after five days, you can end the isolation.

Not just Eric Ding, others too are tweeting criticism. “The CDC has sidelined with the virus,” tweeted, Diana Zicklin Berrent.

Similar posts have been flooding Twitter after the CDC announced the latest change in Covid guidelines on Thursday.

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