NY county threatens to forcibly quarantine residents exposed to COVID-19

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An upstate New York county is threatening to require residents to quarantine if they may have been in contact with a COVID-19 patient or returned from certain restricted states, a report said.

The potential enforcement in Chemung County was outlined in a letter that was distributed by state contact tracers, a health official told Fox News, which obtained a copy of the missive.

Chemung County Public Health Director Peter Buzzetti III told the news outlet that he has legal authority to require county residents to quarantine, but noted such a drastic move is a “worst case scenario.”

“If an individual will not isolate or quarantine voluntarily the statute allows the public health director to have them confined in other manners,” Buzzetti said.

“This is the worst case scenario and we try a number of methods to prevent this from happening,” he said.

Current state restrictions already require people traveling to New York from a noncontiguous state to quarantine for 10 days.

The mandatory 10-day quarantine could be reduced to three days if the incoming travelers test negative twice — once three days before departing and another on their fourth day of isolation.

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