Notices

CDC Updates and Shortens Recommended Isolation and Quarantine Period for General Population

Given what we currently know about COVID-19 and the Omicron variant, CDC is shortening the recommended time for isolation from 10 days for people with COVID-19 to 5 days, if asymptomatic, followed by 5 days of wearing a mask when around others. The change is motivated by science demonstrating that the majority of SARS-CoV-2 transmission occurs early in the course of illness, generally in the 1-2 days prior to onset of symptoms and the 2-3 days after. Therefore, people who test positive should isolate for 5 days and, if asymptomatic at that time, they may leave isolation if they can continue to mask for 5 days to minimize the risk of infecting others.

Additionally, CDC is updating the recommended quarantine period for those exposed to COVID-19. For people who are unvaccinated or are more than six months out from their second mRNA dose (or more than 2 months after the J&J vaccine) and not yet boosted, CDC now recommends quarantine for 5 days followed by strict mask use for an additional 5 days. Alternatively, if a 5-day quarantine is not feasible, it is imperative that an exposed person wear a well-fitting mask at all times when around others for 10 days after exposure. Individuals who have received their booster shot do not need to quarantine following an exposure, but should wear a mask for 10 days after the exposure.  For all those exposed, best practice would also include a test for SARS-CoV-2 at day 5 after exposure. If symptoms occur, individuals should immediately quarantine until a negative test confirms symptoms are not attributable to COVID-19.

Isolation relates to behavior after a confirmed infection. Isolation for 5 days followed by wearing a well-fitting mask will minimize the risk of spreading the virus to others. Quarantine refers to the time following exposure to the virus or close contact with someone known to have COVID-19. Both updates come as the Omicron variant continues to spread throughout the U.S. and reflects the current science on when and for how long a person is maximally infectious.

Data from South Africa and the United Kingdom demonstrate that vaccine effectiveness against infection for two doses of an mRNA vaccine is approximately 35%. A COVID-19 vaccine booster dose restores vaccine effectiveness against infection to 75%. COVID-19 vaccination decreases the risk of severe disease, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19. CDC strongly encourages COVID-19 vaccination for everyone 5 and older and boosters for everyone 16 and older. Vaccination is the best way to protect yourself and reduce the impact of COVID-19 on our communities.

The following is attributable to CDC Director, Dr. Rochelle Walensky:

“The Omicron variant is spreading quickly and has the potential to impact all facets of our society. CDC’s updated recommendations for isolation and quarantine balance what we know about the spread of the virus and the protection provided by vaccination and booster doses. These updates ensure people can safely continue their daily lives. Prevention is our best option: get vaccinated, get boosted, wear a mask in public indoor settings in areas of substantial and high community transmission, and take a test before you gather.”

If You Test Positive for COVID-19 (Isolate)

Everyone, regardless of vaccination status.

  • Stay home for 5 days.
  • If you have no symptoms or your symptoms are resolving after 5 days, you can leave your house.
  • Continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days.

If you have a fever, continue to stay home until your fever resolves.

If You Were Exposed to Someone with COVID-19 (Quarantine)

If you:

Have been boosted
OR
Completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine within the last 6 months
OR
Completed the primary series of J&J vaccine within the last 2 months

  • Wear a mask around others for 10 days.
  • Test on day 5, if possible.

If you develop symptoms get a test and stay home.

If you:

Completed the primary series of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine over 6 months ago and are not boosted
OR
Completed the primary series of J&J over 2 months ago and are not boosted
OR
Are unvaccinated

  • Stay home for 5 days. After that continue to wear a mask around others for 5 additional days.
  • If you can’t quarantine you must wear a mask for 10 days.
  • Test on day 5 if possible.

If you develop symptoms get a test and stay home

CCLD Review Winter 2021 Edition

View the winter 2021 edition of the CCLD Review.

Some of the stories in this edition include:

  • Educational opportunities for the building trades
  • New Plumbing Code effective Dec. 17, 2021
  • Technical Advisory Groups present findings, review proposed legislation
  • Residential builders and remodelers must complete continuing education before license renewal
  • Plumbing licenses expire Dec. 31, 2021
  • and more.

About the CCLD Review

The CCLD Review is a quarterly publication that promotes safe, healthy work and living environments in Minnesota and informs construction and code professionals about the purpose, plans and progress of Construction Codes and Licensing Division. Subscribers may also receive periodic updates about CCLD activities and seminars.

View previous editions of the CCLD Review newsletter.

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Questions?

View staff contact information.

OSHA Suspends Enforcement of COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate for Businesses

The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is suspending enforcement of the Biden administration’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for large private businesses after a federal appeals court upheld a stay on it last week.

OSHA said in a statement published on its website Friday night that while it is confident in its power to protect workers amid the pandemic, it is suspending activities related to the mandate, citing the pending litigation.

“The court ordered that OSHA ‘take no steps to implement or enforce’ the ETS [Emergency Temporary Standard] ‘until further court order.’ While OSHA remains confident in its authority to protect workers in emergencies, OSHA has suspended activities related to the implementation and enforcement of the ETS pending future developments in the litigation,” OSHA said.

President Biden announced in September that the administration was rolling out a new rule that would require all private employers with 100 or more employees to mandate vaccines or weekly testing for all personnel, a guideline that has the potential to impact nearly 80 million workers.

Earlier this month the administration set Jan. 4 as the deadline for qualifying private employers to start mandating the vaccine or requiring weekly testing. The rule was developed by OSHA.

In a 22-page ruling last week, the 5th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals wrote that the administration’s COVID-19 vaccine and testing mandate was “fatally flawed” and ordered that OSHA not enforce the requirement “pending adequate judicial review” of a motion for a permanent injunction.

The court said OSHA should “take no steps to implement or enforce the mandate until further court order.”

The case originated when Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton (R), along with the states of Louisiana, Mississippi, Utah and South Carolina, filed a lawsuit against the Biden administration over the vaccine mandate in October, requesting a preliminary and permanent injunctive relief to stop the mandate from being enforced. The lawsuit also asked that the mandate be declared unlawful.

Earlier this month, the federal appeals court ordered a temporary halt on the mandate, but the Department of Justice then requested that the halt be lifted, contending that the administration has the legal authority to require COVID-19 vaccines or testing for larger companies and that the states that are challenging the mandate have not shown that their claims outweigh the harm of stopping of rule.

The court, however, upheld the stay, which prompted OSHA’s announcement that it is suspending enforcement of the rule.

More than two dozen state attorneys general and other groups are also challenging the mandate in court.

Despite the court’s ruling, however, the White House urged businesses to continue implementing the guidance for COVID-19 vaccines and testing.

“We think people should not wait. We say: Do not wait to take actions that will keep your workplace safe. It is important and critical to do and waiting to get more people vaccinated will lead to more outbreaks and sickness,” White House deputy press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre told reporters last week following the ruling.

“We’re trying to get past this pandemic, and we know the way to do that is to get people vaccinated,” she added.

The administration has said that it believes it is on firm legal footing even after the federal appeals court’s ruling, maintaining that it has the authority to mandate vaccination for workers in an effort to stop the spread of COVID-19.

It is not clear how the White House will react to OSHA’s announcement.

 

COVID-19 ETS – MN OSHA Webinars

Webinar:  OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard in Minnesota

These webinars will detail the COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) published by OSHA in the Federal Register on Nov. 5, 2021, and the steps Minnesota OSHA (MNOSHA) will be taking to review and adopt this standard. Questions can be submitted to osha.consulation@state.mn.us.

 

Dates (same webinar repeated)

Nov. 16, 2 to 3 p.m.

  1. To join by computing device:  Register at https://minnesota.webex.com/minnesota/onstage/g.php?MTID=e90f75005cc515a30ddecfa8dc99cc679.
  2. To join by phone:  Call 415-655-0003 or 855-282-6330 and enter access code 2491 849 7051.

Nov. 18, 10 to 11 a.m.

  1. To join by computing device:  Register at https://minnesota.webex.com/minnesota/onstage/g.php?MTID=e7313e5bb2f9ebec649cb9f01f6ca1512.
  2. To join by phone:  Call 415-655-0003 or 855-282-6330 and enter access code 2494 451 6047.

Nov. 22, 10 to 11 a.m.

  1. To join by computing device:  Register at https://minnesota.webex.com/minnesota/onstage/g.php?MTID=e5c328e59f3d0d6fe0c5cf90698ed360e.
  2. To join by phone:  Call 415-655-0003 or 855-282-6330 and enter access code 2498 503 2926.

 

The webinars on OSHA COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing Emergency Temporary Standard in Minnesota have been posted on https://www.dli.mn.gov/about-department/rulemaking/webinar-osha-covid-19-vaccination-and-testing-emergency-temporary.

 

Also, here is the Fed OSHA webinar: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ixxkn3Y8z6g.

 

Please refer to MN OSHA’s website periodically for further updates.