Fully vaccinated people should get tested after potential Covid-19 exposure: CDC
- The agency has now said it is reversing that guidance because of the more contagious Delta variant, which now accounts for most Covid-19 infections.
Fully vaccinated people should get tested three to five days if they have been exposed to Covid-19 infection, even if they don’t have symptoms, the US Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and Prevention has said.
The latest guidance from the CDC said this is because experts do not know yet how long one is protected after recovering from Covid-19. Even if someone has already recovered from Covid-19, it is possible, although rare, that one could be infected with Covid-19 again, the CDC said.
The change in guidance comes two months after the agency eased its initial testing directions. The CDC said in May that Covid-19 vaccinated people face very little risk of serious illness and don’t need to be tested in most cases, even if exposed to someone who was sick. The thinking behind this was that vaccinated people also weren't likely to spread the infection to others.
The agency has now said it is reversing that guidance because of the more contagious Delta variant, which now accounts for most Covid-19 infections. The CDC noted that studies have shown vaccination provides a strong boost in protection in people who have recovered from Covid-19, but the new data shows vaccinated people infected with the Delta variant could infect others.
"If you were treated for Covid-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma, you should wait 90 days before getting a Covid-19 vaccine. Talk to your doctor if you are unsure what treatments you received or if you have more questions about getting a Covid-19 vaccine," it said.
The CDC said that US citizens returning from abroad still have to present a negative Covid-19 test before boarding flights, regardless of their vaccination status. It added that anyone who tests positive for Covid-19 should still isolate for 10 days.
"If you or your child has a history of the multisystem inflammatory syndrome in adults or children (MIS-A or MIS-C), consider delaying vaccination until you or your child have recovered from being sick and for 90 days after the date of diagnosis of MIS-A or MIS-C. Learn more about the clinical considerations people with a history of multisystem MIS-C or MIS-A," the CDC said.