The CDC has offered these options in order to help jurisdictions balance the risk of transmission with the personal and societal burdens associated with quarantine. However, any quarantine period shorter than 14 days carries a slightly higher risk that the person will become infectious after release. After a 14-day quarantine period, the estimated risk of being infectious is 0.1%. By comparison, the residual post-quarantine transmission risk for a 10 day quarantine without testing is estimated to be about 1% with an upper limit of about 10%. The residual post-quarantine transmission risk for a 7 day quarantine with a negative test at 5-7 days is estimated to be about 5% with an upper limit of about 12%. To prevent the spread of COVID-19, individuals as well as worksites and other community entities may continue to practice the more conservative 14-day period of quarantine.
The CDC suggests that quarantine can be ended at day 7 if testing before the time of planned quarantine discontinuation is negative and no symptoms develop. However, because this option carries a higher risk of infection developing after quarantine release, its use is not allowed in the updated health officer order, aside from staffing shortage situations in specific groups described above.