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Testing Positive for COVID-19

Testing Positive for COVID-19

You’ve tested positive for COVID-19. Learn what to do next.


If you have tested positive, you must immediately self-isolate. Do not go to work, school, or public places.

Identify and report your contacts

To help us protect your loved ones and community, consider who you were with, and where you’ve been in the two days before you started feeling ill.

Public Health will be in touch.

Public Health will reach out to you in the coming days to discuss your symptoms and contacts, and provide you with further direction.

Notifying contacts

Please notify your household contacts that you have tested positive for COVID-19 and ask them to self-isolate if they are not fully immunized (the person received the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine seven or more days before coming into close contact with you).

We encourage you to notify your close contacts, and provide them with a link to our COVID-19 Contact Information page.

How to isolate in your household

If you live with other people, avoid contact with them if you can. Stay and sleep in a separate room and use a separate bathroom if possible. Find more information about what to do if you have COVID-19 or information if you are caring for someone with COVID-19.

Manage how you’re feeling

Many of the symptoms can be managed with home treatment such as drinking plenty of fluids, rest and using a humidifier or hot shower to ease a cough or sore throat.

You can call 8-1-1 anytime to talk to a nurse at HealthLinkBC, available in 130 languages.

If your symptoms worsen, or if you do not improve after 5 or 6 days, call or 8-1-1, your family doctor or Urgent and Primary Care Centre, so they can determine if you need to be assessed again.

If, at any time, you are feeling unwell and are worried this might be an emergency due to severe difficulty breathing or chest pain, call 9-1-1 — emergency departments are available to those who need them.

Getting back to normal – when can I end my isolation?

People with COVID-19 will need to isolate for at least 10 days from when their symptoms started or when they got tested, whichever date comes first. If your symptoms persist beyond 10 days, stay isolated.

If you did not have symptoms when you spoke with public health, but symptoms develop during your isolation period, your isolation period will be longer. In this case, your isolation period will end 10 days from when your symptoms started.

If your symptoms persist beyond 10 days, stay isolated and call 8-1-1, your family doctor or Urgent and Primary Care Centre, so they can determine if you need to be assessed again.

Should I get vaccinated after having COVID-19?

If you have not received either your first or second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, you should still get vaccinated after you have recovered and ended your self-isolation.

Vaccines boost your immunity and have shown to be highly effective in preventing serious illness and death, even after you have had a COVID-19 infection.

Drop in or make an appointment for your first or second dose (28 days or more after getting our first dose) at an immunization clinic near you.