CDC’s New COVID-19 Community Level Prevention Measure Recommendations DO NOT APPLY to Health Care Settings or Visitors

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) announced recently that they have changed the metrics used to determine personal and community COVID-19 prevention measures based on community spread. It is important to note that this change does not apply in health care settings because the consequences of spread and risk of triggering outbreaks is greater.

The CDC continues to recommend that health care settings, including nursing homes and assisted living communities and visitors, follow infection prevention and control practices to reduce the risk of transmission of COVID-19. Health care settings should continue to follow CDC’s infection prevention and control recommendations for health care settings, which continues to use community transmission levels as a metric for stratifying some infection prevention and control measures (e.g., use of source control, screening, testing).

Core practices of infection prevention and control are outlined in this CMS Visitation Memo. Visitors entering nursing homes should continue to be screened, wear face coverings or masks, and follow physical distancing. Health care personnel should continue to follow infection prevention and control programs currently in place by the facility which reflect CMS requirements and CDC recommendations for health care settings.

The CDC continues to recommend everyone get vaccinated with a booster as this is the leading public health prevention strategy to prevent severe disease and deaths from COVID-19. People who are up to date on vaccines (e.g. have receive a booster) have a much lower risk of severe illness and death from COVID-19 compared to those who are unvaccinated or fully vaccinated.

Posted in COVID-19