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After having COVID-19

Ending your isolation

You can leave isolation if:

  • any acute respiratory symptoms have substantially reduced and
  • you have gone for at least 24 hours without a fever without using fever-reducing medications such as paracetamol or ibuprofen.

If you still have symptoms after 7 days, stay home until your symptoms are gone or seek medical care if you are not sure.

You do not need a negative test to end isolation. People who get COVID-19 can continue to test positive for some time after they have recovered, even though they no longer have COVID-19 and are no longer infectious. Entering high-risk settings after ending isolation

Some settings and workplaces are considered higher risk because there are people more vulnerable or at higher risk of severe disease or higher risk of widespread transmission of COVID-19.

In Queensland, high-risk setting includes:

  • a hospital
  • a residential aged care facility
  • a disability accommodation service

If you have any symptoms of an acute respiratory infection you should avoid entering a high-risk setting until:

  • at least 7 days have passed since you received a positive COVID-19 test result and
  • you no longer have any symptoms.

Returning to work or school

Queensland Health strongly recommends that you should stay home to isolate while you have any symptoms of an acute respiratory infection.  You should not return to work or school until:

  • your acute respiratory symptoms have substantially reduced and
  • you have gone for at least 24 hours without a fever without using fever-reducing medications such as paracetamol or ibuprofen.

To reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission, some employers or education settings may impose restrictions or conditions on people who have recently tested positive to COVID-19 or had any symptoms of an acute respiratory infection.

Before returning to school or work, you may be required to notify your employer or education provider that you have been diagnosed with, or had symptoms of, COVID-19 and you should follow any additional requirements put in place by your employer or education provider to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission.

In addition, if returning to work or school within 7 days after receiving a positive COVID-19 test result, you should:

  • wear a face mask covering your nose and mouth whenever you are in an indoor setting outside the home – masks are recommended for children over the age of 12, and for any children under the age of 12 where it is safe for them to do so
  • avoid contact with people who are a higher risk of severe disease
  • wash your hands regularly
  • practice good respiratory hygiene (such as covering your cough)
  • advise others you have been are in contact with to monitor for COVID-19 symptoms and get tested if they become symptomatic.

In the 35 days after ending isolation

If you have previously recovered from COVID-19 and at least 35 days have passed since receiving a positive COVID-19 test result it is possible for you to be reinfected. If you come into contact with a COVID-19 case you should follow Queensland Health’s guidelines for close contacts.

If you have any symptoms of an acute respiratory infection and at least 35 days have passed since receiving a positive COVID-19 test result you should get tested for COVID-19.

Get your next vaccination and look after your health

Even if you’ve had COVID-19, you should get vaccinated. You are far less likely to get really sick if you get COVID-19 again. After you have recovered, you should wait three months to have your first, second or booster doses of COVID-19 vaccine.

If you have missed some medical or health appointments while you were in isolation, now is a good time to call your GP and arrange an appointment to have a check-up or get back on track with caring for your health.