Self-Isolation Requirements Changing to Consider Fully Vaccinated
With a few exceptions, anyone who is 14 days past their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at time of exposure and is asymptomatic no longer has to isolate when named as a close contact of a COVID-19 positive person.
"More than 20 per cent of those 12 and up in Saskatchewan are considered fully vaccinated," Health Minister Paul Merriman said. "The level of protection provided by two doses of the vaccine is enabling us to announce new guidelines around self-isolation. This is another important step in getting back to normal and enjoying the summer."
The release from self-isolation does not apply to anyone with symptoms. Even if someone has relatively mild symptoms they should immediately self-isolate and be tested. Anyone who is unvaccinated or has received only one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine must still self-isolate as directed by Public Health if they are named as close contacts.
Public Health has the discretion to require fully vaccinated close contacts to isolate if they are considered at higher risk of serious illness or for increased transmission, or they live in settings at risk of outbreaks. Self-isolation of fully vaccinated close contacts may also be required in any health care setting, including long-term and personal care homes and congregate living settings like group homes and corrections facilities. There is still a requirement for health care workers and employees/residents at facilities including long-term and personal care homes, corrections facilities and other congregate living settings to be tested, if they are deemed close contacts of someone who is COVID-19 positive.
The requirement to self-isolate for 14 days following international travel is currently a federal quarantine order that is subject to change.
"We know vaccines work and are helping to reduce disease and death," Merriman said. "Avoiding the disruption of having to isolate and missing out on work and the activities we enjoy is yet another reason to roll up your sleeve and Stick it to COVID if you have not yet received your vaccinations."
Fully vaccinated is someone who has passed the 14-day mark of receiving the second of a two-dose series such as Pfizer, Moderna or Astra Zeneca COVID-19 vaccines, or one dose of a single dose series such as Johnson and Johnson (Johnson and Johnson is not available in Canada).
For more information, see www.saskatchewan.ca/self-isolation.