If you test positive for COVID-19

What to expect if you test positive for COVID-19, including going into quarantine, what to expect when you're there and when you can safely return home.

If you have been tested for COVID-19 follow advice from testing staff

They will tell you want to do next and if you need to self-isolate while you wait for your test result. Always stay home if you are feeling unwell or have symptoms of COVID-19.

If you test positive a health professional will call you to discuss:

  • all the people you have had contact with recently
  • moving you into a quarantine facility.

In a quarantine facility, we can look after your health and wellbeing, and more easily stop the virus spreading. Your family can join you if you want. Otherwise they will need to self-isolate at home.

In quarantine, you will be provided with 3 meals a day and snacks, Wi-Fi, laundry services and basic toiletries and refreshments.

Read more about isolation facilities (external link)

There is no cost to you for these services or the care that you receive. You may be eligible for the COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme if you need to take leave from work.

COVID-19 Leave Support Scheme

Going into quarantine

You will usually be asked to move into a quarantine facility as quickly as possible. This helps to make sure we can stop the virus spreading to others, and make sure you’re well looked after.

The staff at the quarantine facility are well-trained on cleaning and hygiene procedures to keep the disease isolated. They have protective equipment to do this safely.

Quarantine facility staff will closely monitor your physical and mental health during your stay.

A staff member from your public health unit will support you in making all necessary arrangements, including transport to the facility.

Your household close contacts will need to self-isolate. It’s up to you and your family/household to decide:

  • if you want to isolate together in a quarantine facility, or
  • if the person with COVID-19 goes into quarantine alone.

A staff member from your public health unit will support you in making these decisions and arrangements.

Staying in quarantine

On arrival, you will be provided with a ‘welcome pack’ with information about what to expect during your stay.

You will be provided with 3 meals a day and snacks, Wi-Fi, laundry services and basic toiletries and refreshments, so you don’t need to leave to get supplies.

Read more about isolation facilities (external link)

There is no cost to you for these services or the care that you receive.

If you’re unwell, a dedicated health team will be caring for you.

If you become very unwell you may need to go to hospital. In this case, the hospital will take the steps needed to isolate you while giving you the medical care you need. If you have tested positive for COVID-19, you will not need to pay for your stay in quarantine, or for any COVID-19 related medical costs.

Returning home from a quarantine facility

The health team that cares for you will determine when you can return home and resume your everyday activities. They will need to be confident you are no longer infectious.

If you had a mild to moderate illness that didn’t need hospital care, this will be:

  • at least 10 days after the onset of your symptoms, and
  • after you have had no symptoms for at least 72 hours.

If you had a more severe illness that required hospital care you will need more time before you can return home and resume your usual activities. This will be assessed on a case-by-case basis.

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