January 11, 2021
Dear North Union Community and Staff,
Recently, the Centers for Disease Control revised their guidelines for quarantines. These revisions allowed for a reduction in days quarantined, provided certain measures were met. This notification is to make you aware of the changes and stipulations for reduced quarantines. If you are impacted by quarantine through contact at school, Mrs. Cox, School Healthcare Provider, or official will contact you directly to review these guidelines.
The CDC continues to recommend a 14-day quarantine after exposure to someone with COVID-19 as the best option for reducing the risk of spreading COVID-19. If individuals can stay in quarantine for the full 14-days, this the preferred and safest quarantine.
Public health officials understand 14-days can be very difficult for some individuals. When a 14-day quarantine is not feasible, the Union County Health Department and the Ohio Department of Health are adopting CDC's 10-day option for shortened quarantine.
The 10-day option allows an individual to resume daily activities after 10 days from last known exposure as long as the individual has NOT developed symptoms. The individual would need to be vigilant in continuing to symptom monitor, social distance and wear a mask for an additional four days to provide additional protection for family, friends and our community.
In the school environment, there may be adjustments to a student or staff interaction with others during this 14-day period. Individuals would be required to wear a mask at all times. They would be required to keep 6 feet of distance from other individuals at all times. The student or staff member would be unable to participate in athletics or extracurricular activities until 14 days have passed. Six feet of distance can not be assured in Learning Level 1, therefore the 14 day quarantine will remain in this model.
The Union County Health Department is not currently recommending the CDC's 7-day and negative test option for shortened quarantine. This 7-day and negative test strategy is currently not a practical nor an equitable strategy for our community. Given that this option is not supported by local public health officials, we will not be able to honor it within the school district.
It is important to note, if you share a home with a person who is positive for COVID-19, quarantine of household contacts is a critical strategy for protecting our community. On-going exposure, often linked with sharing a home with someone with COVID-19, increases the risk for household contacts to contract COVID-19. Therefore, it is important that members of the home quarantine as soon as possible and for at least 10-days after the LAST member of the household is released from their 10-day isolation.
Only in situations where contact with others in the home can be substantially reduced during the entire infectious period (either the ill person completely isolates in their own bedroom and bathroom with meals brought to their door on disposable dishes/utensils, or the healthy members of the home can separate completely from the ill person), should the quarantine for household members without symptoms start concurrently with the ill person’s isolation.
Thank you for your patience and understanding as we work together through an ever evolving situation. If you have any questions regarding quarantine periods, please contact Mrs. Cox at 740-943-1701 or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Richard J. Baird,
North Union Local Schools
Lindsay Cox, RN
District Healthcare Provider