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COVID Update- Isolation Updates

Written by Denise Torrey

15-03-2022

Updates including what happens if someone in the household becomes positive after 8 days are leaving isolation.

Updates from MoE

We have been asked what happens if someone in your household tests positive after you have come out of isolate. See the highlighted below.

We have out in some diagrams from Unite Against COVID below that might be  helpful.

Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will be required to isolate for seven days.

Day 0 is the day symptoms began or the day the test was taken (whichever came first). Cases will isolate for a full seven days and are free to return to normal activities on Day 8, if they are not symptomatic.

See ‘Supporting students and staff to return to school’ further below for more information.

Household contacts

Household contacts are required to isolate for the same seven days as the case.

They can return to their normal activities on the same day as the first case in their household, so long as all test results have been negative, and they are not symptomatic.

Household contacts should continue to self-monitor for symptoms up to Day 10.

Household contacts will be required to take a self-administered rapid antigen test (RAT) on Day 3 and Day 7 of the case’s isolation period.

If symptoms develop at any time during isolation:

  • the usual advice remains in place to undertake an additional RAT

  • if the test is negative and symptoms persist or worsen, test again 48 hours after that negative test

  • if symptoms resolve there is no need for a further test until the required Day 7 test. If this is negative, they can return to daily life on Day 8.

If a household contact has new symptoms on the day of release:

  • they should undertake an additional RAT and stay at home while unwell

  • if that test is negative and symptoms persist or worsen, test again after 48 hours. If symptoms resolve, there is no need for a further test.

If a household contact has finished their period of isolation they do not need to return to isolation if a new case is identified in their household. However, this only applies for a period of seven days following their leaving isolation.

Should a new household member be confirmed as a case eight or more days after the household contact has left isolation, then they must start a new period of self-isolation for seven days.

General advice

Anyone that has had COVID-19 or who is a contact of someone who has COVID-19 should avoid attending high-risk settings until ten days have passed since they were infected or exposed to the virus. These will include, for example, aged-care facilities, correctional facilities and hospitals (unless the individual is requiring care).

As always, undertake a rapid antigen test (RAT) if symptomatic. If the RAT is negative and symptoms persist or worsen, you should test again 48 hours after the negative test. If symptoms resolve, there is no need for a further test.