If you test negative with symptoms, you should get a PCR test to verify the result.
If you test positive, you should follow the instructions below: “What do I do if I test positive?”
You are a close contact of someone with COVID-19.
Wait at least 5 days after the exposure before being tested. Testing too early may lead to a false negative result.
If you develop symptoms, get tested right away; you do not need to wait 5 days.
At-home tests are NOT recommended if you need a test result to travel.
How Do I Use an At-Home Test?
Make sure you use an at-home test that has the FDA Emergency Use Authorization (EUA). Tests without this FDA EUA are not valid tests.
Every at-home test is different.
Follow the directions included with the test to administer and evaluate the test.
Collect the swab from the site the test instructs you to use: If the test says to do a nose swab, collect a sample from your nose. Do not spit on the swab or collect a sample from your mouth, as this may not give you a correct result.
Interpret the result using the test instructions: Wait the recommended time before reading the result and match your result with the provided instructions. Do not read the result too early or too late or use one brand’s instructions to interpret a different brand’s test.
If your at-home test provides instructions for reporting the result, report the result using that method.
What Do I Do if I Test Positive?
For the general public, isolate at home for 5 days. If you are feeling better (no symptoms, or resolving symptoms with no fever for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication), you can leave your home after 5 days, but you must wear a mask at all times around others for 5 more days.
Different guidelines apply for some people like healthcare workers and for people who live or work in congregate settings like long-term care facilities. For more information for those populations, visit the Sedgwick County Isolation and Quarantine Guidelines Webpage.
Notify your close contacts that they have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 and should quarantine.
Close contacts are people who have been within 6 feet of an infected person for a total of more than 15 minutes over a 24-hour period. Think about who you have been around for 2 days before you became sick until 10 days after you became sick (this is your infectious period).
Quarantine guidelines depend on someone’s vaccination status, work, school attendance, etc. For more information, visit the Sedgwick County Isolation and Quarantine Guidelines Webpage.
For the general public who are not up to date on vaccinations (have all vaccinations in their series, including booster dose when eligible), they will need to quarantine at home for 5 days, then wear a mask at all times around others for 5 more days.
For people living in your household who are not up to date on vaccinations, they will need to quarantine at home for your 10 day infectious period, plus 5 days. Then they can leave the home, but must wear a mask at all times around others for 5 more days.
If your close contacts develop symptoms, they should be tested. If they test positive, they should follow the isolation guidelines above.
What Do I Do if I Test Negative?
If you have symptoms and test negative, you should get a PCR test before returning to your normal activities.
If you are a close contact of someone with COVID-19 and are in quarantine, you must remain in quarantine for the duration of your quarantine period, even with a negative test.
How Do I Report My Test Results to Sedgwick County?
Your at-home test should have instructions on how to report your test results. This is usually through an app on your phone or a website.