Illinois Coronavirus Updates: COVID Quarantine Guidelines, Omicron Boosters

Here's what you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today

Illinois Coronavirus Updates: COVID Quarantine Guidelines, Omicron Boosters
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With guidelines for COVID changing, do people exposed to the virus still need to quarantine?

The new guidance comes just weeks before health officials expect a new omicron-specific booster shot to be available.

Here’s what you need to know about the coronavirus pandemic across Illinois today:

Do You Still Need to Quarantine After COVID Exposure? Here’s What New CDC Guidelines Say

Do you still need to quarantine if you were exposed to COVID?

The guidelines have changed, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The CDC changed its recommendations last week, releasing new guidance for people who were potentially exposed.

Read more here.

Omicron-Specific Booster Expected to Be Available in ‘a Few’ Weeks, COVID Czar Says

White House COVID coordinator Dr. Ashish Jha said on Wednesday that the newly updated COVID-19 boosters will be available to teens and adults “in a few short weeks.”

“I believe it’s going to be available and every American over the age of 12 will be eligible for it,” Jha told NBC News’ Lester Holt.

Read more here.

CDC Director Walensky to Reorganize Agency After Admitting Covid Pandemic Response Fell Short

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky is reorganizing the agency, saying it didn’t react quickly enough during the Covid pandemic, according an internal review of the agency’s operations released on Wednesday.

Walensky laid out several organizational changes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention will take over the coming months to correct missteps and failures that occurred during the last 2.5 years of the pandemic, according to a fact sheet.

Read more here.

COVID Variant Tracker: BA.5 Now Responsible for Nearly 90% of Cases in U.S., CDC Says

An omicron subvariant that has been the dominant strain of COVID-19 in the United States since early July is showing no signs of letting up, causing nearly 90% of the current cases in the country.

According to the weekly “Nowcast” update provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on Tuesday, the BA.5 COVID subvariant is now responsible for 88.8% of cases in the United States, a slight uptick from last week as it continues its spread.

Read more here.

Jill Biden Prescribed Paxlovid to Treat COVID. Here’s What to Know About the Antiviral Drug

First Lady Jill Biden is experiencing “mild symptoms” after testing positive for COVID, the White House announced Tuesday.

Biden, who has been twice-vaccinated and twice-boosted, has been prescribed Paxlovid, the same antiviral drug that President Joe Biden recently took when he contracted the virus.

Read more here.

The Latest CDC COVID Guidelines: Here’s What Steps to Take if You Test Positive

New guidelines surrounding COVID protocols have been put into place, with the changes being driven by a recognition that an estimated 95% of Americans 16 and older have acquired some level of immunity, according to federal health officials.

The revised recommendations, announced Thursday by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, ease social distancing requirements and no longer encourage Americans to quarantine if they come into close contact with an infected person.

Read more here.

Is Nausea a Sign of COVID-19? What to Know About Digestive Symptoms and the Virus

People who come down with COVID-19 can experience a wide range of symptoms, with fever, tiredness and cough said to be some of the most common. However, digestive symptoms like nausea, vomiting and diarrhea, as well as others, are reported less frequently, according to the Mayo Clinic.

A study titled “The Roles of Nausea and Vomiting in COVID-19,” published in 2021, found both nausea and vomiting aren’t uncommon symptoms for children and adults with COVID. Often times, they can appear before other types of symptoms.

Read more here.

First Symptoms of COVID: Early Signs of an Infection You Should Watch For

Multiple subvariants of the omicron strain are continuing to circulate across the country, with some studies indicating that they could potentially do a better job of evading existing vaccines and immunity.

According to the latest update from the CDC, the BA.5 lineage of the omicron variant is now the most prevalent strain of the virus in the U.S., accounting for more than 88% of recent cases.

BA.4, another omicron subvariant, is behind 5% of infections.

Read more here.

As Illinois Heads Back-to-School, the CDC Has New COVID Guidelines For Isolation, Exposure

While some Illinois students and teachers are still waiting until later this month to head to the classroom, others have already begun to head back-to-school, including those in District U-46 — the state’s second largest school district.

But as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention continues to roll out its new, more flexible COVID guidelines and protocols, this school year is shaping up to look a little different than the last two.

Read more here.

How Many Days Are You Contagious With COVID? Here’s What the CDC and Doctors Say

Anyone who contracts COVID-19 is advised to isolate for at least five days, but could you be contagious even after that?

It’s a possibility, according to Chicago’s top doctor.

Read more here.

Should You Test Before Leaving COVID Isolation? Here’s What the CDC, Chicago’s Top Doctor Say

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a new set of COVID guidelines Thursday, clarifying whether recovering individuals need to test out of isolation.

In its updated guidelines, the CDC recommended different approaches for patients based on their symptoms.

Read more here.

Exposed to COVID? FDA Recommends Taking as Many as 3 Rapid At-Home Tests, Even if You Aren’t Showing Symptoms

Under revised guidance from the Food and Drug Administration, individuals who have been exposed to COVID-19 may need to take as many as three at-home tests to ensure that they are not experiencing asymptomatic infections.

The new guidance was issued last week after the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention changed its own recommendations for those exposed to COVID, saying that quarantine is no longer recommended for those exposed to the virus and who are not showing symptoms.

Read more here.

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