You have been identified as a close contact of a person with COVID-19.
If you live, work, attend, volunteer, or are admitted to a high-risk setting (e.g. hospitals including complex continuing care facilities and acute care, congregate living settings including long-term care homes, retirement homes, First Nation elder care lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices and correctional institutions, Home and Community care, Provincial Demonstration schools and Hospital schools), go to the High-Risk Settings page for more information.
What you need to do and know:
- When to Self-Isolate
- When to Get Tested
- Check for Symptoms
- Tell Others
- Protect Others
1. When to Self-isolate
- You may be required to self-isolate depending on which of the three scenarios below applies to you:
a. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you must self-isolate. Go to the symptoms page to find out if you have COVID-19.
b. If you live with the person with COVID-19, you must self-isolate for as long as they do, unless you meet one of the following criteria AND have no symptoms of COVID-19:
- Previously tested positive for COVID-19 (including a Rapid Antigen Test) in the last 90 days
- 18 years or older and have received a booster dose (i.e. 3 doses of a COVID-19 vaccine; or 4 doses if you have a weak immune system)
- 17 years and younger and are fully vaccinated
If you have a weak immune system and do not meet any of the above criteria, you must self-isolate for 10 days, even if the person with COVID-19 is only required to isolate for 5 days.
c. If you do not live with the person with COVID-19, you do not need to self-isolate, unless you develop symptoms. You must self-monitor for 10 days after your last exposure to the person with COVID-19.
- Self-isolation means that you must stay home, keep away from others, wash your hands often with soap and water, cover your coughs and sneezes, and wear a well-fitted mask. Read the How to Self-Isolate fact sheet for more information.
- If you cannot isolate at home, you may qualify to stay at the Toronto Voluntary Isolation Centre (TVIC). You can refer yourself to TVIC by calling 416-338-7600.
- You can stop self-isolating if you have not developed symptoms of COVID-19 by the end of your isolation period.
2. When to Get Tested
- Testing is only available for some contacts. Please refer to the provincial webpage to find out if you can get tested.
- If you have a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) at home, you can administer it to yourself. Go to the COVID-19 Testing page for more information on what to do after you complete a RAT and are a close contact.
- If you test positive for COVID-19 (including on a RAT), go to the What To Do If You Have COVID-19 page to find out how long you and the people you live with need to self-isolate.
- Whether or not you test, you must complete any self-isolation requirements.
3. Check for Symptoms
- Check for symptoms every day for 10 days after you last had close contact with the person with COVID-19.
- If you develop symptoms of COVID-19, you must self-isolate immediately.
- If your symptoms feel worse than a common cold, call your health care provider or Tele-Health Ontario at 1-866-797-0000.
- If you have severe symptoms, such as difficulty breathing or chest pain, call 911.
4. Tell Others
- Tell your employer that you have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 and advise them that you need to self-isolate or self-monitor (whichever applies to you).
- Follow any restrictions from work, as specified by your employer.
- If you develop symptoms of COVID-19 tell all of your household members that they must isolate for as long as you, unless they meet one of the criteria in Section 1b.
- Before going for in-person medical care, tell them you are a close contact of someone with COVID-19.
5. Protect Others
- For the 10 days after your last exposure to the person with COVID-19, even if you do not need to isolate, you must:
- Wear a well-fitted mask in all public settings including while exercising or playing sports. Avoid activities that require mask removal, such as dining out.
- NOT visit or attend work at high-risk settings* (e.g., hospitals, long-term care homes, or congregate living settings)
- NOT visit individuals who may be at higher risk for illness* (e.g., older adults, those that have a weak immune system)
*Unless required for critical work or unless you have previously tested positive for COVID-19 (including on a Rapid Antigen Test) in the past 90 days.
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