CONCORD, N.H. (AP) — New Hampshire residents who are fully vaccinated against the coronavirus or were previously infected no longer need to quarantine after being exposed to an infected person or after traveling, according to new guidance from the state Division of Public Health Services.
Under previous guidance, anyone who was exposed to the virus was advised to quarantine for 14 days, while those returning to New Hampshire after traveling outside of England were told to quarantine for 10 days.
An update issued Monday says those quarantine periods are unnecessary if someone is at least 14 days past their second dose of the vaccine or if they are within 90 days of being infected.
The guidance urges people with prior infections to also get vaccinated, however. And officials continue to discourage any nonessential travel, even for those who are vaccinated or had previous infections, because “protection is not 100%, durability of immunity is still unknown, and there are new circulating strains” of the virus that are being investigated.
The University of New Hampshire is ramping up its efforts to process coronavirus tests for the state.
The university recently partnered with the Department of Health and Human Services to handle testing for 30 long-term care facilities and shelters. Since late December, it has processed more than 3,000 tests, but the lab expects eventually to process up to 1,000 tests a day for the state.
The lab is using federal virus relief aid for the partnership. Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Lori Shibinette said it ensures faster results at a time when national testing labs are seeing increased demands.
More than 53,000 people have tested positive for the virus in New Hampshire, including 842 cases announced Tuesday that included totals from several days. Nine new deaths were reported, bringing the total to 878.
The seven-day rolling average of daily new cases in New Hampshire has risen over the past two weeks from 611 on Dec. 28 to 711 on Monday.