With the ever-increasing number of cases of COVID-19, most of which are now derived from delta variants of the virus, it is more important than ever to take steps to isolate the potential for exposure.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and PreventionIf you know or suspect that you have been infected with COVID-19, both vaccinated and unvaccinated, you can take a variety of steps.
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What to do if exposed to COVID-19
If you are in close contact with a person who tests positive for COVID-19 at a distance of 6 feet or less for a total of 15 minutes or more in 24 hours, it is best to quarantine immediately.
Here’s how to properly quarantine:
- Stay home for 14 days after your last contact with someone who has COVID-19.
- Be aware of symptoms such as fever of 100.4 degrees, coughing, shortness of breath, and other signs of COVID-19.
- If possible, keep away from those who live with you, especially those who are at very high risk of getting sick with COVID-19.
Watch for symptoms up to 14 days after exposure after quarantine is complete. If you have any symptoms, immediately quarantine and contact your local public health authority and your health care provider.
There are ways to shorten the quarantine. This includes stopping at 10 days instead of 14 days without a test, or 7 days after a negative test. According to the CDC, a negative test must be done after the 5th day to stop after the 7th day.
For safety, the CDC advises you to follow quarantine recommendations from the local health department.
Do I need to quarantine if I am fully vaccinated?
No. According to the CDC, fully vaccinated people do not need to be quarantined after close contact with people infected with COVID-19, unless they are symptomatic.
However, this does not mean that you do not need to be careful. Vaccinated people should be tested 3-5 days after exposure, even if they are asymptomatic. Masks should also be worn indoors in public places for 14 days after exposure or until the test results are negative.
What if the test is positive and there are no symptoms?
In the absence of symptoms, the CDC says you can be around other people 10 days after the positive test.
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What is the difference between quarantine and quarantine?
Quarantine is used for potentially exposed people and quarantine is used for people infected with COVID-19.
Isolated people should stay at home until safe around others, stay in a different room or area if they live in a common space, and use a different bathroom if possible I have.
The CDC recommends the following to effectively isolate you from others:
- Monitor symptoms. Seek medical attention immediately if you have an emergency warning sign such as difficulty breathing.
- If possible, stay in a separate room and use a separate bathroom from other household members.
- Avoid contact with other family members and pets.
- Do not share personal household items such as cups, towels and utensils.
- If possible, wear a mask when you are around others.
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