CDC updates COVID-19 guidelines for those who are fully vaccinated

Updated: Feb. 15, 2021 at 11:10 PM EST
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COLUMBUS, Ga. (WTVM) - As Americans continue to get both doses of the COVID-19 vaccines, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is releasing new quarantine guidelines for those who are fully vaccinated.

The latest data from the Georgia Department of Public Health’s Vaccine Distribution Dashboard shows nearly 1.45 million Georgians have gotten the COVID-19 vaccine. More than 403,000 Georgians have gotten a second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, according to the state’s most recent data.

The CDC has three main criteria for those who have been fully vaccinated and exposed to someone suspected of having COVID-19.

“They would not have to quarantine if they’ve had both doses within the last three months. You had to have your second dose two weeks before that time that you were exposed, and also not showing any symptoms,” said Pamela Kirkland with the Columbus Health Department.

Kirkland says you won’t get the full immunity the COVID-19 vaccines provide until you have the second dose in your system for two weeks.

“So, it has time to build up antibodies against the virus so, it’s really important to maintain social distancing and wear your mask until you have both doses,” Kirkland explained.

Those who live in a group setting, like a nursing home or senior citizen home, will still have to quarantine even if they meet the other criteria.

These new guidelines come as the nation’s top infectious disease expert warns it’s important to get as many Americans vaccinated as quickly as possible and double down on public health measures to help prevent the spread of a more contagious COVID-19 strain in the U.S.

“The masking, put together with the vaccine, we can confront this variant from taking over,” said Dr. Anthony Fauci.

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