Guyana will not adopt revised US CDC COVID-19 guidelines – Health Minister

--as Delta variant still circulating

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The revised COVID-19 guidelines issued by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) will not be adopted in Guyana any time soon because the deadly Delta COVID-19 variant is still circulating here.

This is according to the Minister of Health, Dr. Frank Anthony, who on Thursday, revealed that the Delta variant remains the more dominant strain of the virus in the country.

The US CDC has now shortened the time people should isolate after testing positive for the virus from 10 to five days if they do not have symptoms.

The CDC also shortened the recommended time for people to quarantine if they are exposed to the virus to a similar five days if they are vaccinated. People who are fully vaccinated and boosted may not need to quarantine at all.

Health Minister, Dr. Frank Anthony.

But the Health Minister made it clear that Guyana will not go that route for now especially since authorities are still to determine whether the new Omicron variant is here.

“The duration of the illness with the Omicron variant is much shorter and based on those clinical parameters that is why the CDC has changed their guidelines.

“With the Omicron variant that might be one of the things to look at, however, the variants that we have circulating here is still Delta so therefore, we have to be mindful that those kinds of guidelines might not be applicable to us,” Dr. Anthony explained.

With that in mind, the Health Minister made it clear that “if and when we do get the Omicron variant”, the authorities would revise the guidelines within that context. But in the meanwhile, the current COVID-19 guidelines of isolating for seven days stays intact.

The Health Minister reminded that it is pertinent for persons to keep wearing their masks to protect against the virus, especially as celebrations to usher in the New Year are set for the weekend.

“What we don’t want is after these holidays we start seeing an increase, a big spike in cases. If we do have that then depending on how many cases, it can quickly overwhelm the system,” he stressed.

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