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COVID19 2020-12-30 Quarantine 10-Day

The Tompkins County Health Department (TCHD) is sharing information with the public and altering local guidance and publications to reflect updated quarantine guidance from New York State.

The new guidance states that individuals potentially exposed to COVID-19 may end their quarantine after a 10-day period if they report no symptoms during the quarantine period. Following a 10-day quarantine, individuals must continue to monitor themselves for symptoms for an additional four days. If symptoms develop during these days, the individual must immediately isolate and contact the Health Department at 607-274-6604 or their primary care provider to determine if testing is needed.

This new guidance from New York State comes following a recent shift in Federal CDC guidance. This change is retroactive and will apply to individuals who are currently in quarantine. As long as no symptoms are reported during the 10-day period, these individuals will be released at the end of the tenth day.

Tompkins County Public Health Director Frank Kruppa stated, “Throughout the pandemic we’ve seen guidance shift as science has progressed and experts have been able to study the disease and its transmission. The most important thing to remember with this new guidance is that the incubation period for the virus is still 14 days and you must monitor yourself for symptoms through the entire 14-day period. Individuals must continue to wear a mask and keep distance from one another when out in public.”

Kruppa continued, “While the percentage of people who develop symptoms and test positive for COVID-19 dramatically decreases after 10 days, we know that individuals have become positive during those last 4 days of quarantine."

TCHD has updated the official quarantine release letter and is in the process of editing the Tompkins County Health Department website to reflect this change.

Join Tompkins County Officials and Cayuga Health System CEO Dr. Martin Stallone for a virtual COVID-19 Town Hall on Wednesday, January 6 at 4pm. The Town Hall will be streamed live to YouTube, members of the public can submit questions for the panelists to Dominick Recckio, Tompkins County Communications Director at