June 25, 2020 2:17 PM

Why are contacts asked to quarantine to prevent the spread of COVID-19?

Symptoms can take up to 14 days to appear after someone is exposed to a person with COVID-19. During this time, the exposed person (or contact) may spread the disease, even if they do not have any symptoms and feel well. For this reason, contacts cannot leave their homes (or other locations), even to go to work, the grocery store, pharmacy, or for other daily tasks. This is a legally mandated requirement of the County Health Officer.*

Quarantine periods have recently been updated:

  • If you get a negative COVID-19 test 8 days or more after your close contact with a confirmed case, you can end your quarantine 10 days after the last contact. Because you might still be a carrier of COVID-19 for up to 14 days, you must monitor your temperature and symptoms daily. You must also strictly comply with face covering, social distancing, and hygiene requirements, and avoid all gatherings with non-household members until 14-days from the last contact with a confirmed case.
  • If you don’t take a COVID-19 diagnostic test, your quarantine is 14 days from the last date you had close contact (being within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes) with someone diagnosed with COVID-19. It’s important for you to monitor your temperature and symptoms daily. 

Remember, if you begin to have symptoms or are confirmed to have COVID-19 during this time period, you must follow home isolation instructions.

Additional information about quarantine may be found:

*Quarantine and Isolation are health orders that must be followed to reduce the spread of the virus and protect the public’s health.