Testing positive for covid-19

You tested positive for COVID-19. Now what?

It’s important to follow public health instructions to make sure you, your friends and family are safe – even if you don’t feel sick.

1. If You Test Positive

Where to find support after a positive COVID-19 Test

Remember, LA County is here for you during this uncertain time. LA County has resources, services and benefits to help you as you recover from COVID-19, such as temporary housing, food and other support services.

Get LA County resources for those who test positive:

See available resources

Here are things you can do right away to stay safe:

  • Stay home and and isolate from others

  • Track how you feel and look for emergency signs

  • Stay 6 feet from others and wear a mask

  • Wash your hands often

2. Tips If You are sick

What is isolation?

Isolation is staying away from others while you are sick. This includes keeping your distance from other people, even those in your household and workplace. It is one of the most important things you can do to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and save lives.

If you’ve tested positive, it’s very important that you isolate. Here’s how:

  • Stay home, except for medical care,

    from work, school, shops and all other places outside. Don’t worry, there are LA County resources if you need a private and safe place to stay temporarily, and you have rights as an employee.

  • Keep 6 feet from other household members

    to avoid infecting everyone you live with. If possible, stay in a separate room. Use separate utensils, wear a mask and keep your distance from others you live with.

    If you can’t stay in your own room, be sure to disinfect all surfaces you touch, keep windows open for airflow and stay 6 feet away from others.

  • Avoid sharing household items

    like dishes, bedding and towels, that could spread the virus. If you do use shared items, wash them right after using. Clean high-touch surfaces frequently, like door handles and countertops, with disinfectant.

Need a private and safe place to isolate? Temporary housing is available.

Get a place to stay* *regardless of immigration status

Worried about taking time off? Learn about your employee rights and options:

Learn about your options

As you recover from COVID-19, continue to wash your hands frequently and wear a mask if you leave your home to receive medical care. To learn how to stay away from others when you have COVID-19, click here.

3. Ending isolation

When is it safe to be around others again?

In most cases, people can safely see others and return to work if both are met:

It’s been more than 10 days since you tested positive or started feeling ill, AND

It’s been 24 hours since you’ve had a fever (without medicine) and your symptoms have improved

Check with your employer on any return-to-work instructions. Until then, continue to stay away from other people until you are feeling better. If you have any questions about keeping your distance from others, you can learn more here.

4. When to seek medical help

Tips on keeping track of how you feel

Keep track of how you feel when you are sick, and make sure to note the first day you don’t feel good. You may first start to feel sick up to or even 14 days after catching the virus, and might have:

  • Fever or chills (100.4°F or higher)
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Runny or stuffy nose
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • Sore throat
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea
  • New loss of taste of smell

When to seek emergency medical care

Remember, hospitals are open. If you feel or someone is showing any of the following, get emergency medical care immediately (Call 911 or go to the nearest Emergency room):

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent chest pain or pressure
  • Pale, gray, or blue-colored skin, lips, or nail beds, depending on skin tone
  • New confusion
  • Inability to wake or stay awake
  • Or if you feel like you are having any other medical emergency
  • Some people with COVID-19 never get symptoms. If you test positive, you must stay home, so that you don’t put others in danger!

  • Testing positive for COVID-19 can also be very hard on your mental health. For mental health resources, click here

5. Understanding contact tracing

Protecting friends, family and neighbors with private contact tracing

Contact tracing means tracking where people may have picked up the virus. Your information is private, safe and will not be shared. If you test positive, you may receive a call, email or text message with questions about who you have been in contact with and when.

Sharing who you have been around will help slow the spread of COVID-19 by making sure others can quarantine. Your information is safe and secure from your employer, law enforcement and immigration agencies will not receive your information, and no negative immigration consequences will result from the contact tracing process. To learn more about the contact tracing process, click here.