States forging ahead with reopening plans can now use a 60-page guidance document published by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) originally deemed too prescriptive by the White House. The guidance follows a three-step or phased approach to reopening schools, child-care facilities, restaurants, and mass transit. The first “gating” criteria—or when to move to the next step—for each sector is a decrease in newly identified cases, followed by a decrease in emergency department or outpatient visits for COVID-19 or influenza-like illnesses. The final gating criteria is a robust testing program, with 14 days of 20% or less of tests turning out positive for the novel coronavirus. “Decisions and strategies about how to operate are implemented at the state, tribal, local, and territorial levels because every locale is different, and individual jurisdictions have the authority and local awareness needed to protect their communities,” the CDC said in an emailed media statement.

 

Image by leo2014 from Pixabay

Read more CIDRAP…