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Is CDC changing COVID-19 isolation guidelines? CDC says no, but 93% of St. Louisans who heard it believed it

UPDATE (March 1, 2024): The CDC guidance on isolation with COVID & other respiratory illnesses has changed. Please use the newest resource “New CDC Guidelines”.

On February 13th, The Washington Post reported that CDC would be relaxing its COVID isolation guidelines. However, CDC officials said that there are no updates to the guidelines. Despite CDC’s denial, 29% of St. Louis adults reported hearing the report and nearly all of them (93%) believed it was true.

Some St. Louis survey respondents were more likely to hear and believe the claim than others. Rates were highest among those ages 50+ (42% heard it and 100% believed it) and white St. Louisans (35% heard it and 90% believed it).

In its current guidelines, CDC recommends that individuals with COVID-19 stay home for at least 5 days and isolate from others in their homes. It says there are no updates and that any changes would be based on scientific evidence.  Several media outlets reported that new relaxed guidelines would go into effect in April.

St. Louis results were part of a national survey of 524 adults in CO, MD, MO and NE. Adults were asked if they’d heard in the last 7 days that “New CDC guidelines won’t require people with COVID-19 to stay home as long.” Across all states, 27% had heard the claim. Respondents in Omaha were most likely to have heard it (41%) and those in Baltimore and Colorado were least likely (21 and 22%, respectively). 

Across all sites, almost all (90%) of those who heard the claim believed it could be true. Over half (52%) heard the claim from TV/Radio and/or other internet sources.

Community organizations in St. Louis can share the resources below to help community members stay informed.

This week’s report is based on responses from a panel of adult residents of Baltimore, MD (n=182); St. Louis, MO (n=153); Omaha, NE (n=88); and Colorado (n=101), surveyed from Saturday, February 17, to Monday, February 19, 2024. Explore these data and more at iHeardSTL.

Download the graphics below to share about this topic.

Suggested caption:

Despite being unverified, 93% of St. Louisans who heard that the CDC was changing its COVID-19 isolation guideline believed it. The potential change was first reported by The Washington Post. However, as of today, the CDC has not confirmed such plans. The CDC currently recommends that if you test positive for COVID-19, stay home for at least 5 days and isolate from others in your home.  

#iHeardSTL #COVID #CDC #COVIDGuidelines #IsolationGuidelines

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