Since the world was turned upside down and changed beyond compare thanks to the continuing Covid-19 pandemic that we are still trying to navigate through, there has been lots we’ve had to get used to. Before 2020, social distancing, self-isolation, track and trace, and close contacts were all phrases that were not used so readily by society. Then the pandemic came, and these phrases became common knowledge and part of the vernacular.
Even though we are now almost two years into the pandemic, given the rules and regulations keep changing and evolving, it is difficult to keep track of what everything means and when you have to follow what specific rules and when you don’t. One set of rules and regulations that seems to cause people a lot of confusion and problems is related to the track and trace and close contact rules.
People are often unsure when they need to just self-isolate and when they need to get themselves tested for Covid-19. To help you understand these rules and regulations better we are going to look at this subject in the following post.
So, Should You Get Tested?
Not Necessarily. It really depends. If you are contacted through the NHS Test and Trace scheme you will be informed that you have come into contact with someone who has been confirmed with a positive case of Covid-19. They will provide you with directions on whether you are required by law to self-isolate.
If you do not need to self-isolate you will be given advice and details about testing and guidance on how to best prevent Covid-19 from spreading. In most cases, even if you do not currently have any noticeable and significant symptoms of Covid-19, you will be directed to take a PCR test as soon as you possibly can.
The only cases where a PCR test is definitely not required is if it is children under the age of 4 years old or younger that have come into contact with someone and are outside their household.
If you have not been alerted through the track and trace app, but have recently come into contact with someone who has tested positive for Covid-19, you will be advised to self-isolate and to take a test as soon as you possibly can.
What Does Close Contact Mean?
To provide some clarification on the language used, you may wonder what is meant by “close contact”. Close contact in situations involving track and trace and the Covid-19 pandemic refers to:
- Within 2m of someone for longer than 15 minutes
- Within 1m of someone for longer than 1 minute
- Face to face with someone less than 1m away for any duration, whether you are coughed upon or simply spoke to them.
So, although it can be a little confusing at times knowing when you need to self-isolate and get tested and when you don’t, we hope this article helps you understand things a bit better. If you need any advice or guidance regarding self-isolation or testing, you can always speak to one of the team here at Pure Testing, take a look at our various blogs on the subject or look up the Gov.UK website.