Frequently Asked Questions & Answers
Q. What is required of contacts of contacts of positive cases?
A. No action is required.
Q. What is the definition of a close contact?
A. Anyone within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more (cumulatively over a 24 hour period) during infectious window.
Q. What are the quarantine requirements for individuals identified as close contacts who have not been vaccinated, or whose vaccination status is unknown?
A. These individuals must quarantine for 10 days following the date of exposure to a positive case, and continue to monitor for symptoms days 11-14. If there is ongoing household contact with a positive case, the close contact must quarantine for the entire isolation period of the positive case PLUS 10 days following the end of isolation. It is recommended that all close contacts get tested for COVID-19 as soon as possible after being identified, and, if negative, tested again in 5–7 days after last exposure or immediately if symptoms develop during quarantine. however, a negative test result does not negate the need to complete the quarantine period for unvaccinated individuals.
Q. What are the quarantine requirements for individuals identified as close contacts who are fully vaccinated?
A. These individuals do not need to quarantine as long as they remain asymptomatic. It is recommended that they get tested 3-5 days post exposure, and wear a mask until receiving a negative test result or for 14 days following exposure if not tested. If they test positive they must isolate for 10 days.
Q. What are the quarantine requirements for individuals identified as close contacts who have recently recovered from COVID-19?
A. Close contacts who had a positive COVID-19 test result in the past 90 days and have completed their isolation period may refrain from quarantine provided they are asymptomatic.
Q. What are the isolation requirements for individuals who test positive for COVID?
A. Individuals who test positive must isolate until they meet all of the following criteria to discontinue isolation:
1) 10 days have passed following the onset of symptoms AND
2) 24 hours without a fever (without the use of fever-reducing medication) AND
3) overall, symptoms improving.
4) If asymptomatic, isolate until 10 days have passed following the date of positive test collection.
Q. Is a negative COVID-19 test required for positive cases to be return to school/work after isolation?
A. No, The CDC does not recommend requiring a negative COVID-19 test result to return to school, as positive cases may continue to test positive up to 90 days following the initial positive test. An individual is no longer considered contagious once they have met the CDC criteria to discontinue isolation.
Q. How do you determine the infectious period of positive case?
A. The infectious period of a positive case begins 48 hours prior to onset of symptoms (refer to CDC complete list of symptoms of COVID-19), OR 48 hours prior to a positive test date for asymptomatic cases.
Q. What is an acceptable COVID-19 test?
A. Both PCR and Rapid Antigen test results are acceptable, though a negative antigen test in a symptomatic individual should be followed up with a PCR test.
Q. If a positive test is followed up with a negative test, is it considered a false positive or may the case end isolation early?
A. No, the isolation period must be completed following a positive test.
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- YNHH: Yale New Haven Health
- CTDPH: Connecticut Department of Public Health
- CDC: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
- FEMA: Federal Emergency Management Agency
- NIH – National Institute of Health