Amazon reduces COVID-19 isolation period for US workers

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Amazon is cutting down the amount of time that US workers have to isolate if they test positive for COVID-19, the company said in a Friday memo sent to employees. The Wall Street Journal earlier reported the news, which an Amazon representative confirmed to CNET.

Employees will now be able to return to work after seven days of isolation, the e-commerce giant said in the staff memo. That’s down from 10 days and comes after the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention also reduced its recommended quarantine duration to five days. Amazon employees who test positive will also get up to 40 hours of paid leave.

In line with the CDC’s protocol, workers don’t have to show a negative COVID-19 test to come back to work, according to the Journal. As the country’s second-biggest private employer, Amazon has nearly one million employees in the US, the Journal notes. 

The move comes as the omicron variant of COVID-19 continues to spread rapidly. On Monday, the US reported more than 1 million new COVID cases, and infections and hospitalizations are on the rise. Several large tech companies, including T-Mobile and Meta, scaled back their plans for CES 2022 this week, and big events like the Grammys and Sundance have either been postponed or will transition to a virtual show.

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