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Indiana Chamber leader: New CDC quarantine could boost business

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) — A state business leader hopes new COVID-19 guidance will give Indiana an economic boost.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s decision on Monday to cut isolation and quarantine periods has some experts worried about confusing Americans, but one expert tells News 8 this could help with ongoing staffing shortages.

From health care and industrial to retail, Kevin Brinegar, the president of the Indiana Chamber of Commerce, says the local economy has taken a hit from the coronavirus. It’s also caused extreme work shortages including one at IU Health.

“When you get to the point where you have to call in the National Guard, the Navy to come and help you, it’s a pretty serious situation, and everyone needs to recognize that,” Brinegar said.

The CDC shortened the recommended isolation and quarantine period from 10 days to five Monday. That’s for people who are infected but have no symptoms. According to the CDC, peak infection is one or two days before symptoms appear, and two or three days after.

“I believe the CDC wouldn’t have adjusted these guidelines if they didn’t think this five-day period provides the appropriate margin of safety and health for people,” Brinegar said.

The changes may bring relief to some local business owners, and employees who don’t feel sick and can be productive.

“Allowing and determining it is safe for individuals to go back to work after five days will help with the workforce shortages both in the health care and hospital industry, who are really struggling, as well as with employers in general, helping them get their people back to work faster after they’ve had an episode of the COVID virus,” Brinegar said.

Doctors recommend people to get tested and stay away from others if they experience symptoms including coughing, sneezing, a runny nose, headaches, and a sore throat.