NY, NJ and CT order quarantine for visitors from states with high infection numbers

NEW YORK -- The governors of New York, New Jersey, and Connecticut are ordering a mandatory 14-day quarantine on visitors from states with high COVID-19 cases.  They made the announcement on Wednesday morning during a joint news conference.

The travel advisory is effective at midnight at the start of Thursday.  The impacted states currently include Alabama, Arkansas, Arizona, Florida, North Carolina, South Carolina, Washington, Utah, and Texas.

The formula announced to make up the list is states with an infection rate of 10 per 100,000 on a 7-day rolling average or 10 percent of the total population positive on a 7-day rolling average.

Several states have seen a record number of coronavirus cases recently.  New York Governor Andrew Cuomo said last week that he was considering the quarantine order.  It ended up coming as a regional approach.

Cuomo says police will be stopping cars with out of state plates in New York.  He says violators may face a judicial order and mandatory quarantine along with fines.

“It’s really about protecting public health,” said Dr. John Whyte, Chief Medical Director for WebMD. “What I would be concerned about is that we all made these efforts to really decrease the spread of the virus in the city and the state, and you don’t want an influx of persons who may  have the virus and may spread it.”

Whyte says that he doesn’t think requiring incoming residents to quarantine themselves is too much to ask, but he does believe that fleeing Floridians or returning New Yorkers need to quarantine correctly.

“The Principles of quarantine really are the same no matter what phase you might be in, where it’s really limiting yourself to one area, either your apartment or in your house, minimizing contact that you have with other people, because you don’t want to spread the virus through those respiratory droplets,” Whyte said.

Cuomo had blasted other states early in the pandemic for ordering quarantines on New Yorkers.