To clear things up, VICE spoke with an infectious disease specialist who answered, in detail, all your loophole, nitpicky quarantine questions. Quarantine, by definition, is separating a possibly exposed person from everyone else, so they don’t inadvertently get others sick. But as our understanding of COVID-19 improves, along with testing capacity, it’s possible that you can feel safe about a slightly shorter quarantine. Chin-Hong said a proper quarantine means no going to the grocery store, drugstore, nearby park, walk-up neighborhood bar, etc. Fourteen days is the CDC-determined period of time for COVID-19 quarantine because it’s the long end of the average range of infection.