Close Contacts

Close Contacts may live or work with someone who has COVID-19. Find advice on what you and your household members need to do.

What you need to do

Close Contacts must stay in self-isolation until you’re cleared to leave by Public Health and are completely well.

Call Healthline if you get symptoms or need advice.

Phone 0800 358 5453

If you have difficulty breathing, call an ambulance.

Phone 111

Close Contacts

Close Contacts may live, work with, or have been in the same place (location of interest) at the same time as someone who has COVID-19. Close Contacts are at a higher risk of exposure to COVID-19 than Casual and Casual Plus Contacts, as their contact happened while the case was infectious.

If you use Bluetooth tracing and the NZ COVID Tracer app, it may identify you. You’ll get an orange alert in the app. Follow all instructions in the alert. Public health may also contact you if you're a Close Contact.

Actions Close Contacts need to take

The actions you need to take will depend on your level of exposure to the person with COVID-19. Close Contacts must stay in self-isolation until you're cleared to leave by Public Health.

Isolate for at least 14 days

You need to immediately self-isolate at home or in a managed facility for at least 14 days.

Your 14 days starts the day after you were last near the person with COVID-19.

If you live with the person who has COVID-19, your self-isolation starts the day after that person:

  • leaves the household – for example, they go to a managed facility
  • recovers from COVID-19.

Public Health will talk with you about how long to self-isolate for, and when you can leave your home.

Sometimes Close Contacts will move to a managed facility to isolate. This is to protect people they live with.

Guidance on self-isolation (external link)

Get a test for COVID-19

You’ll need to get at least three tests:

  • straight away
  • five days after you were last near the person with COVID-19
  • 12 days after you were last near to the person with COVID-19.

A negative test means you do not have COVID-19.

A positive test means you do have COVID-19. Public Health will call you.

Sometimes you’ll need extra tests. For example, if you develop COVID-19 symptoms. Public Health will let you know when to get tested.

Even if your result is negative, you need to self-isolate until Public Health tells you that you can leave your home.

Find a testing centres on our website, or call Healthline.

Community testing centres

Phone 0800 358 5453

Watch for symptoms

Public Health will contact you regularly to check on your health and wellbeing.

If you get symptoms – even if you’ve already tested negative – you'll need to:

  • alert Public Health
  • have another test immediately
  • complete your 14-day self-isolation period – even if your test result is negative.

What your household members should do

The people you live with do not need to do anything unless you or they develop symptoms.

If you get symptoms, then the people you live with will need to stay at home until you have another negative test.

Even if your extra test is negative, you’ll still need to finish your self-isolation period.

If the people you live with get symptoms, they’ll need to:

  • get a test and stay at home until they get a negative result
  • remain at home until 24 hours after their symptoms have stopped
  • try to stay separate from others they live with if they can.

Financial support

There’s financial support for people who need to stay at home due to COVID-19.

COVID-19 Short-term Absence Payment (external link)

More information

You can find more information and advice on the Ministry of Health’s website.

Contact tracing for COVID-19 – Ministry of Health (external link)

Find more information on different types of contacts and downloadable resources.

Casual Contacts and their household members

Download a Close Contacts fact sheet [PDF, 101 KB]

Download a Casual Contacts fact sheet [PDF, 97 KB]

Download a Casual Plus Contacts fact sheet [PDF, 98 KB]

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