WHAT IF I HAVE BEEN IN CLOSE CONTACT WITH SOMEONE WHO HAS COVID?

If you are notified by public health staff (via phone call) or directly by someone who has tested positive that you are a close contact of a confirmed case, you should follow the guidance below. Talk to your medical provider or sign up for an appointment at a drive-thru site at www.snohd.org/testing. If you develop symptoms or if symptoms worsen, contact your medical provider by phone or online immediately. 

For the general public:

  • The recommended time for isolation is shortened from 10 days for people with COVID-19 to five days, if they are asymptomatic on day five, followed by five days of wearing a mask when around others. If symptoms occur, individuals should immediately quarantine until a next test confirms symptoms are not related to COVID-19.
  • The recommended quarantine period for those exposed to COVID-19:
    1. For unvaccinated individuals or those that are more than six months from their original mRNA dose or more than two months after the J&J vaccine and not yet boosted, CDC is recommending quarantine for five days followed by strict mask use for another five days.
    2. Vaccinated individuals who have received their booster do not need to quarantine but should wear a mask for 10 days after exposure.
    3. If symptoms do occur after exposure, individuals should immediately quarantine until a negative test confirms symptoms are not related to COVID-19.
    4. When in doubt, get tested on day five and as always, wear a mask when in public spaces after isolation or quarantine are completed. Also be mindful of activities, especially indoors and in crowded settings.

More information can be found at the Washington State Department of Health website here: updated isolation and quarantine guidance

Someone who tests positive for COVID-19 may receive a phone call from public health with questions like date of birth, address, gender at birth, race, and ethnicity. They may be asked about where they work and their job duties, travel history, as well as the nature and timing of the illness. They will not be asked for things like social security number, financial information, or immigration status. 

Disease investigators also ask with whom an ill person had close contact. Public health workers are trained and required by law to not reveal the identity of the person who may have exposed the contact, and to protect the personal health information of the people they call. 

Some people are at higher risk of severe illness from the virus, including individuals who are 60 years or older and those who have underlying health conditions or compromised immune systems. 

Workplaces may be notified by an employee that they are a confirmed case or close contact. A table with general guidance for isolation and quarantine is available online. The employer should work with that employee to ensure needed support, such as sick leave benefits or remote work options. Additional notification may be sent to other employees in the workplace at the employer’s discretion, while respecting the medical privacy of the affected employee. 


Show All Answers

1. WHAT TO KNOW ABOUT COVID-19 VACCINATION
2. WHAT IS A CORONAVIRUS?
3. WHAT ARE SYMPTOMS OF CORONAVIRUS?
4. WHERE DID THIS VIRUS COME FROM AND HOW IS IT SPREAD?
5. WHAT IF I HAVE BEEN IN CLOSE CONTACT WITH SOMEONE WHO HAS COVID?
6. HOW MANY COVID-19 CASES ARE THERE IN SNOHOMISH COUNTY?
7. ISN’T THIS VIRUS BASICALLY JUST THE FLU?
8. WHAT IS THE STATUS WITH SCHOOL CLOSURES?
9. ARE PUBLIC GATHERINGS BEING CANCELED?
10. DO PEOPLE NEED TO WEAR FACE COVERINGS/MASKS?
11. HOW DO I SAFELY DISPOSE OF USED FACE MASKS?
12. WHAT ARE THE RULES FOR BUSINESSES AND ORGANIZATIONS?
13. WHAT IS SOCIAL/PHYSICAL DISTANCING?
14. DOES THE HEALTH OFFICER REALLY HAVE THE AUTHORITY TO RESTRICT ACTIVITIES?
15. WHO SHOULD BE TESTED?
16. WHAT IF I CAN’T GET AN APPOINTMENT WITH MY PROVIDER?
17. HOW LONG IS SOMEONE CONTAGIOUS?
18. IS THERE A VACCINE FOR 2019 CORONAVIRUS?
19. HOW IS THIS VIRUS TREATED?
20. WHAT SHOULD I DO IF I GET SICK?
21. WHAT EARLY TREATMENTS ARE AVAILABLE?
22. WHAT CAN I DO TO PREVENT THE SPREAD?
23. WHAT ABOUT PEOPLE WHO ARE IMMUNOCOMPROMISED OR AT HIGHER RISK?
24. SHOULD I KEEP MY KIDS HOME?
25. WHY ISN’T THERE A LIST OF EXPOSURE LOCATIONS?
26. IS IT SAFE TO DONATE BLOOD?
27. IS IT SAFE TO TRAVEL INTERNATIONALLY?
28. ADDITIONAL INFORMATION