Pac-12 updates COVID-19 protocols following new CDC changes, shortens isolation time after positive tests
The Pac-12 announced on Thursday it has shortened its recommended isolation period following a positive COVID-19 test for both vaccinated an unvaccinated individuals, according to updated protocols established by the league’s COVID-19 Medical Advisory Committee.
The change reflects the latest guidance from theCDC and follows in the footsteps of the ACC and SEC, who have already announced plans to do the same. (The Big Ten and Big 12 have not yet made public a decision to shorten their isolation period.)
The Pac-12 today updated its COVID-19 protocols, informed by the recently updated CDC COVID-19 guidance. The updated Pac-12 protocols, established by the Pac-12 COVID-19 Medical Advisory Committee, can be found here: https://t.co/5w1YBgBG2z
— George Kliavkoff (@Kliavkoff) December 30, 2021
According to the Pac-12’s update, which is effective as of Friday, asymptomatic individuals can exit isolation after five days, but should continue to wear a mask around others for an additional five days. Any individual experiencing symptoms will need to isolate for at least five days, and continue until they are fever-free for 24 hours and symptoms have improved. They can then exit isolation, but should continue to wear a mask for at least 10 days following their initial symptoms.
The Pac-12 also states that vaccinated and boosted individuals don’t have to quarantine, but should wear a mask for 10 days, unless they can test out of it. Unvaccinated individuals have to quarantine for five days, followed by five days of masking when around others.
Following isolation, student-athletes are permitted to return to athletic activities without a mask if they have one negative PCR test or two negative antigen tests 24 hours apart.
Certainly anticipated after the CDC’s updated recommendations earlier in the week, the Pac-12’s new protocols—which the league called “minimum requirements”—should help quell a string of postponements around the league’s basketball calendar due to virus issues.
An unbeaten and top-10 USC squad hasn’t played since Dec. 18 and has either canceled or postponed each of its last three games, including a top-10 showdown with Arizona. The 6th-ranked Wildcats (11-1) have seen three games postponed as well, with a game against Washington in early December postponed and then a trip to LA to face UCLA and USC postponed as both dealt with virus issues. The Bruins (8-1) haven’t played since Dec. 11 and have seen five of their last six games either canceled or postponed because of virus issues. Washington has also had four of its last six games canceled or postponed because of COVID issues.
Only one of the last seven games involving Pac-12 programs, dating back to Dec. 24, have been played as virus issues have forced several other teams to pause activities.