“The Young and the Restless” star Richard Burgi was let go from the soap after “naively and inadvertently” violating the show’s COVID-19 policy by following the CDC’s latest recommended guidelines.
Burgi said he contracted the virus when he was celebrating with his family “back East over Christmas,” like most Americans who recently fell ill.
He tested positive for COVID-19, then “took the necessary five days the CDC had recommended, came back, and then tested twice negatively at the studio.”
The Monday after Christmas, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced that they were slashing the recommended ten day isolation period in half to five days for those who presented as asymptomatic, as new evidence suggests that virus transmission curbs after the first three days of the onset of symptoms.
However, in Burgi’s case, “The Young and the Restless,” had not updated their protocols to reflect the CDC’s change, and he found out too late that he was “not within the show’s guidelines, which is a 10-day protocol.”
“So I inadvertently violated the show’s COVID rules and protocols,” he remarked. An error that has reportedly cost the actor his job.
“I felt terrible about it,” Burgi added. “I still do. It bothers me mightily but it is what it is. I respect whatever the show’s decision is. They’re doing the best they can, as we all are.”
Rather than killing off Ashland Locke, the character he portrayed for 110 episodes, the show has recast the role with “Guiding Light” alum Robert Newman, who will begin appearing on long running soap in February.
“I truly wish the gentleman who’s coming in to play Ashland a wonderful time. He’s going to be working with the most incredible actress and a great, great cast,” Burgi said amicably. “It’s an amazing show. I have nothing but good memories and good wishes for it.”