Self-IsolationSelf-Isolation

On this page:

What is self-isolation?

Self-isolation helps prevent the spread of the virus. Self-isolation means that you do not leave your home except for individual outdoor exercise and to seek urgent medical care. 

Do I need to self-isolate? What additional precautions do I need to take? 

A chart that gives different situations (tested positive, symptoms, close contacts, international travel) and indicates what you and the people you live with need to do in each situation. To read this text in a web reader, click Version for web reader: Do I need to self-isolate? What additional precautions do I need to take? 

What can I do while self-isolating?

  • Stay in your home.
  • Obtain services over the phone or online and ask for help from others if needed.
  • Order grocery or pharmacy delivery or ask someone to pick them up for you.
  • Use the phone or internet to connect with family or friends.
  • Go outside on your personal property.
  • Leave home for independent outdoor exercise or exercise with a caregiver. Maintain a 2 metre distance from others, do not participate in in-person fitness with others, and wear a mask if you must enter a shared area to go outdoors (for example, in an apartment building).
  • Seek urgent health care. Please notify the health care provider if you have tested positive for COVID-19, have symptoms of COVID-19, or are a close contact.

What can I NOT do while self-isolating?

  • No visitors, except those considered essential (for example, health care workers).
  • No grocery shopping in the store or at curbside pickup.
  • Do not return to work or other activities

What benefits are available if I miss work due to self-isolation?

The Ontario COVID-19 Worker Income Protection Benefit is available to people who are self-isolating for reasons related to COVID-19.  

Resources:

Version for web reader: Do I need to self-isolate? What additional precautions do I need to take?

If… I have symptoms of COVID-19, regardless of my test results

Self-isolation instructions:  

If you have symptoms, you should self-isolate until you have no fever and your symptoms have been improving for 24 hours (or 48 hours for nausea, diarrhea, or vomiting). This will reduce the spread of COVID-19 and other respiratory and gastrointestinal illnesses.

You should also take additional precautions for 10 days from the start of your symptoms:

  • Wear a well-fitted mask in indoor public settings (including work, school, and childcare).
  • Avoid activities where mask removal would be necessary, including dining out and practicing/playing sports where masking cannot be maintained.
  • Do not visit anyone who is at higher risk of illness, such as seniors. Note that some disabilities are invisible, and do not assume others are low-risk.
  • Avoid non-essential visits to highest risk settings. Highest risk settings are hospitals (including paramedic services), home and community care, congregate living, long term care and retirement homes, First Nation elder care lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices, correctional institutions, Provincial Demonstration schools, and hospital schools. Please contact a specific organization if you have questions about their policy.

If…  I have tested positive for COVID-19, but I do not have symptoms  

Self-isolation instructions:    

You do not need to self-isolate.

You should also take additional precautions for 10 days from your positive test:

  • Wear a well-fitted mask in indoor public settings (including work, school, and childcare).
  • Avoid activities where mask removal would be necessary, including dining out and practicing/playing sports where masking cannot be maintained.
  • Do not visit anyone who is at higher risk of illness, such as seniors. Note that some disabilities are invisible, and do not assume others are low-risk.
  • Avoid non-essential visits to highest risk settings. Highest risk settings are hospitals (including paramedic services), home and community care, congregate living, long term care and retirement homes, First Nation elder care lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices, correctional institutions, Provincial Demonstration schools, and hospital schools. Please contact a specific organization if you have questions about their policy.

If…  I am a close contact of someone who has COVID-19. I do not have symptoms.

Self-isolation instructions:    

You do not need to self-isolate.  

You should also take additional precautions for 10 days from your last contact (unmasked & closer than 2 metres) with the ill person:

  • Wear a well-fitted mask in indoor public settings (including work, school, and childcare).
  • Avoid activities where mask removal would be necessary, including dining out and practicing/playing sports where masking cannot be maintained.
  • Do not visit anyone who is at higher risk of illness, such as seniors. Note that some disabilities are invisible, and do not assume others are low-risk.
  • Avoid non-essential visits to highest risk settings. Highest risk settings are hospitals (including paramedic services), home and community care, congregate living, long term care and retirement homes, First Nation elder care lodges, group homes, shelters, hospices, correctional institutions, Provincial Demonstration schools, and hospital schools. Please contact a specific organization if you have questions about their policy.  

If…   I have travelled internationally in the past 14 days

Self-isolation instructions:      

Self-isolate for 14 days, unless exempt. Visit www.travel.gc.ca for details.

Additional precautions that I must take:

  • Self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19.  
  • According to federal travel requirements, children aged 5-11 who are unvaccinated and have returned from international travel in the past 14 days must wear a mask in all indoor public settings (including schools), even if exempt from quarantine.   

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