NIE for J1 Medical Doctors from India

Hi

I am asking this question for my friend. Their father has got covid and they want to go back to Kerala, India for a few days. They work as internal medicine physician in NC on J1 visa and are on COVID duty.

Would they be subjected to the Presidential proclamation 10199? which means they would have to stay in a place like Mexico/Qatar,etc for 14 days before coming to the US?

We are confused because this article says its NOT needed
https://in.usembassy.gov/visas/national-interest-exception-frequently-asked-questions/

And this one says its needed.

https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/us-visas/visa-information-resources/covid-19-travel-restrictions-and-exceptions.html
Any information is appreciated.

Thank you

Koshy

J1 Physicians sponsored by the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates are not subject to Presidential Proclamation 10199.

For a full list of J-1 categories eligible for the National Interest Exception, please visit Presidential Proclamation on the Suspension of Entry as Nonimmigrants of Certain Additional Persons Who Pose a Risk of Transmitting Coronavirus Disease 2019

If the above do not apply to your friend he/she will need to get NIE approval from the consulate that issuez the J1 visa. If J1 visa has expired your friend will need to go for stamping/dropbox and include the NIE letter to get the travel approval as explained in the Faq link you shared.