What to Do If You Are a Close Contact

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People who are identified as a close contact will need to take steps to manage their exposure according to CDC guidelines. Recommendations for close contacts to quarantine, get tested, and wear a mask after an exposure to COVID-19 will vary depending on vaccination status and history of prior COVID-19 diagnosis within the past 90 days. Follow the recommendations below based on vaccination status or history of prior infection in the past 90 days.

  • If you are unvaccinated, the CDC recommends quarantine for five days followed by strict mask use for an additional five days. If the exposed person is under the age of 2, then masking is not required.
     
  • If you are vaccinated and are more than six months out from your second mRNA dose, or more than two months after the J&J vaccine and not yet boosted, the CDC now recommends quarantine for five days followed by strict mask use for an additional five days. If a five day quarantine is not feasible, it is imperative that an exposed person wear a well-fitting mask at all times when around others for 10 days after exposure.
  • Individuals who have received their booster shot, have had a prior infection in the last 90 days, or are within 6 months of their primary mRNA series or two months of J&J dose, do not need to quarantine following an exposure but should wear a mask for 10 days after the exposure. For all those exposed, best practice would also include a test for SARS-CoV-2 at day five after exposure. If symptoms occur, individuals should immediately quarantine until a negative test confirms symptoms are not attributable to COVID-19. 
     
  • Residents of long-term care facilities and other congregate living settings, and healthcare workers should follow NDHHS guidance here and here.
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COVID-19 quarantine flow chart