Dr. Anthony Fauci said he anticipates "further clarification" on the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's (CDC's) updated guidelines to end the COVID-19 isolation period after just five days for people who are not exhibiting symptoms, CNN.com noted.
The CDC recently shortened the recommended times that people should isolate when they've tested positive for COVID from 10 days to five days if they don't have symptomsand if they wear a mask around others for at least five more days.
The CDC also shortened the recommended time for people to quarantine if they are exposed to the virus to a similar five days if they are vaccinated. People who are fully vaccinated and boosted may not need to quarantine at all, the CDC said.
Fauci also said that testing in the second half of a 10-day period is "reasonable." His comments on testing as a requirement to end isolation come as the Biden administration continues to face a shortage of COVID-19 tests. The Biden administration's enhanced strategy that includes distributing 500 million free at-home tests didn't come in time to prevent major disruptions to holiday travel, and it remains unclear when those tests will reach people who want them.
Chicago and most of Cook County will require COVID-19 vaccination proof for indoor venues and Illinois secretary of state offices will be closed starting Jan. 3 due to a surge in infections, NBC Chicago noted.
The proof of vaccine rules will apply to everyone who is at least 5 and includes restaurants, bars, gyms and other venues like sports and entertainment arenas. The rules don't apply to those inside venues for less than 10 minutes, such as those picking up takeout.
The secretary of state office closures for in-person services begin Jan. 3 and last until at least Jan. 18.
Anticipating a wave of COVID-19 patients, Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker has urged hospitals to delay elective surgeries and other non-emergency procedures to keep more beds open.
The suburban village of Orland Park made news recently by defying Cook County's proof-of-vaccine mandate, WGN-TV reported.
"We have allowed our businesses a choice in how they wish to handle COVID-19," Trustee Michael R. Milani said. "So, thus, I will not support this attempt at government overreach of basically forcing vaccination, without being legislated upon local businesses and their patrons."