To ease record COVID call-offs, navigate CDC's return-to-work guidance.

Employers faced major staffing disruptions as Omicron surged this winter. And while the COVID situation is improving, it's still important to know how to handle COVID quarantines and return-to-work issues.

Employers often rely on CDC guidance to make these decisions. In the past, the CDC advised an isolation period of 10 days. That changed in January when the CDC issued new guidance recommending that people who test positive-regardless of vaccination status--stay home for just five days, whether they have COVID symptoms or not.

In addition, until recently, the CDC said workers should produce a negative COVID test result before returning to work. That's not the case anymore. Now, if people are either asymptomatic or have symptoms that are improving, they can resume normal activities--including going to work--as long as they wear a mask for 10 days after the positive test.

Also, the CDC says people should not return until they have been free of fever (without the use of...

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