With the onset of Omicron, cases are piling up worldwide. Among the affected are healthcare staff, who are at the forefront of this onslaught. One of the worst fears of the government is that if the health care staff falls sick, then it would be tough to manage the critical patients, and the hospitalization will keep on rising.
New Protocol- 5 Days Isolation For Health Care Staff
In the latest announcement, the government has stated that health care staff, if they are fully vaccinated and are not showing any symptoms of the virus even though they are tested positive, can resume their work after a period of 5 days of isolation. This decision comes as there are thousands of people who are getting positive and most of the hospitals and nursing homes are now short-staffed.
This new protocol will be implemented from Jan 3 onwards across the nation for all health care staff. However, the government stated that an RT-PCR test would again be taken before the staff is allowed to work.
Health care staff who are showing symptoms will have to be admitted to the hospital or stay in home isolation as per their doctor’s directive. The medical authority stated that since most of the workers are fully vaccinated and some have even taken the booster shots, every few are showing the symptoms.
As per the reports from CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), the US is now seeing a daily surge of 400,000 cases.
Dr. Anthony Fauci, who is the chief medical officer for White House, stated that lowering the isolation period for health care workers is critical, however, hospitals should also check their symptoms very carefully and only then allow the staff to return. If the hospital staff themselves are showing symptoms and then they treat any asymptomatic person, then they too could show the symptoms in a few days’ time.
Dr. Fauci stated that Omicron would only cause mild illness in many people; however, with the speed, it’s been spreading, it will be really dangerous for people who are not yet vaccinated. Vaccinated people are advised to stay in home isolation if they are found positive as the symptoms go away in a week’s time or by taking some medication by the doctor.
Many of the states have now deployed their national guards to help the health care department as many of the doctors and nurses are down due to the virus. As per reports from CDC 73% of the adults in the US have been fully vaccinated and among them, 36% have taken booster shots as well.
White House officials have stated that getting a booster shot will help you and your family a long way as it will increase immunity, and even if you contract the virus, it won’t be fatal. Booster shot also provides immunity against severe cold and other mild diseases which are experienced during the winter season.
Fauci has stated that even if the cases are rising exponentially, it is better to keep the schools open. However, kids who are eligible for vaccination should take it, and proper social distancing along with masking should be followed.
However, many of the schools have switched to remote learning till Jan 10 so that the staff and children can get tested as most of them have traveled during their vacation period.
Many of the schools have also asked the students and staff to present a negative covid certificate while coming to school on Jan 10. Parents are relieved that at least for the first week, the kids won’t have to attend school, but both students and teachers stated that in-person learning is much better than remote learning.
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