CDC has recently updated isolation and quarantine recommendations for the public. View the CDC’s guidance and view Frequently Asked Questions on it.

Recomendaciones de aislamiento y cuarentena

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Isolation

Isolation is for those who are positive for COVID-19, even if you don’t have symptoms. It involves staying home and away from others – even family.

 

Testing is in high demand at this time. You should get tested if you have symptoms and are unvaccinated or have serious or chronic underlying health conditions.  If you are not at high risk and can’t find a test, assume it is COVID and isolate at home. Visit our testing page for more information.

 

When to Start & End Isolation:

 

If you have/had symptoms:

  • Isolate for 5 days: Day zero is the first day of symptoms. Day one is the first day after symptoms developed. You can leave isolation after five-full days if you have no symptoms and are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication, and your symptoms are improving (loss of taste can continue for weeks and should not delay end of isolation).
  • Wear a well-fitting mask for five days after leaving isolation in home/work/around other people.
  • If you have a fever continue to isolate until you are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication.

If no symptoms:

  • Isolate for 5 days. Day zero is the date you tested positive for COVID-19. Day one is the first full day after you took you COVID-19 test.
  • You can leave isolation after five full days. You still must wear a well-fitting mask for another five days around others at home/work/around other people.
*Regardless of whether you have symptoms or not, if you are unable to wear a mask during or after isolation around others, isolate for 10 days.

 

Isolation Dos:

  • Stay home and stay separated from others in the household. Use a sick room and separate bathroom if possible.
  • Have family or friends pick up groceries, medicine or prescriptions for you.
  • Monitor symptoms. If you have trouble breathing seek medical attention immediately.
  • Avoid household members and pets. Wear a well-fitting mask if you need to be around others at home during your 5-day isolation period.
  • Avoid being around or visiting high-risk or immunocompromised persons (hospitals, long-term care, active treatment for conditions) until after day 10.

Isolation Don’ts:

  • Don’t leave isolation if you still have symptoms. Continue to isolate until you are fever-free without medication for at least 24 hours.
  • Don’t use a taxi, bus or ride-share to get medical attention. If it’s an emergency, call an ambulance.
  • Don’t share household items like dishes, or utensils.
  • Don’t go to eat at restaurants or visit other places where you cannot wear a well-fitting mask on days 6 through 10.

 

 

Quarantine

Quarantine is for close contacts of those who have COVID-19. You have been exposed to someone with the virus and may or may not have been infected. It also means staying home and away from others.

 

What is a close contact?

That means you were less than six feet away from a person who was infected with COVID-19 for a cumulative total of 15 minutes in a 24-hour period. So, if you had three, five-minute exposures to an infected person that means you may need to quarantine if you meet the following criteria. * Guidance for students in schools is based on different criteria.

 

Who needs to Quarantine after close contact to someone with COVID-19?

  • You are not vaccinated, or are partially vaccinated.
  • You are NOT up to date with your vaccinations

    * Up to date means you are fully vaccinated, and have received either a third dose, and/or booster when eligible (booster eligibility: more than five months after [Pfizer/Moderna] or two months after (J&J).

 

Quarantine Dos:

  • Quarantine (stay home) and away from others for five days.
    • Day zero starts from the last day of contact with the infected person.
    • If the COVID-positive person is in your house, quarantine will begin as soon as the case is identified, and last until 5 days after your last exposure to that person.
  • You can leave quarantine on day six if you have no symptoms, which is being fever-free for 24 hours without the use of medication. If you develop symptoms, isolate and get tested.
  • Wear a mask for another five days after your initial five-day quarantine has ended.
  • Get tested on day 5 after exposure, if possible.
  • If you are unable to wear a mask, including for children under 2, you should quarantine for the full 10 days.

Quarantine Don’ts:

  • Don’t leave quarantine on day 6 if you develop symptoms. Get tested, if possible, and follow isolation guidelines.
  • Don’t go to restaurants or the gym or other places where you cannot wear a mask for 10 days from your last date of contact with the infected person.
  • Avoid people who are immunocompromised or at high risk for severe disease, and nursing homes and other high-risk settings, until after at least 10 days.

 

Who doesn’t need to Quarantine after close contact to someone with COVID-19?

  • You are up to date with your vaccinations*

*Up to date means you are fully vaccinated, and have received either a third dose, and/or booster when eligible (booster eligibility: more than five months after [Pfizer/Moderna] or two months after (J&J).

  • You had a lab-confirmed case of COVID-19 within the last 90 days. These individuals do not need to get a test on day 5 after quarantine period starts.

You should…

  • Wear a well-fitting mask for 10 days starting from the last day of exposure to the person infected with COVID-19. If you are unable to wear a mask, you should quarantine at home for 10 days.
  • Test on day five after exposure, if possible.
  • If the COVID-positive person is in your house, mask use begins as soon as the case is identified, and last until 10 days after your last exposure to that person.

 

Quarantine & Isolation Information for Students K-12 and Child Care Settings

Read about Quarantine and Isolation for students in K-12 schools (1/10/22).
Read about Quarantine and Isolation for children in child care settings (1/11/22).

Separate guidance is provided for health care personnel.

 

 

Clearance Letters

In order to begin implementing recent CDC updates to isolation and quarantine guidelines, the Delaware Exposed Quarantine Clearance Letter web portal is currently offline and clearance letters are unavailable.

Please also be advised that Division of Public Health (DPH) systems may continue to automatically generate clearance letters for individuals who finish their isolation or quarantine period based on previous guidance. DPH will not be able to issue corrected letters using the newly released guidance, at this time.

As a reminder, clearance letters are NOT required by Delaware Division of Public Health (DPH) to return to work or school. Please consult your employer or school for further guidance. Visit the CDC’s webpage for more information or email DPHCall@delaware.gov for questions.

Page updated 1/18/22

 

 


Get More COVID Data

For more data on Delaware COVID cases, testing and outcomes, including demographic breakdowns, go to My Healthy Community