Information about isolation protocols for COVID-19
Self-isolation for people without symptoms
Self-isolation means staying home and avoiding situations where you could come in contact with others.
- no visitors
- do not go to work, school, public areas, places of worship, stores, shopping malls and restaurants
- cancel or reschedule appointments
- if you must leave home for medical care, do not take buses, taxis or ride-sharing
- use delivery/pick up services for groceries or other needs
- avoid face to face contact (1-2 metres (3-6 feet) of another person)
For information specific to underserved populations, including people living with mental illness or substance use and those who are unstably housed, see the Public Health Agency of Canada’s website.
It is manadatory under the Quarantine Act that people in B.C. from outside of Canada must self-isolate and monitor for symptoms for 14 days upon their arrival and complete or register a self-isolation plan.
There are some individuals who are exempt from this order to provide essential services, but they still need to self-monitor for symptoms.
Returning travellers that develop cold, flu or COVID-19-like symptoms are also required to self-isolate for at least 14 days or 10 days after onset of symptoms, whichever is longer.
For close contacts:
If Public Health determines you are a close contact to a COVID-19 case, or are part of an outbreak investigation, you will be provided guidance on self-isolation (length of time, when to end, etc.).
If you develop symptoms:
Individuals should monitor themselves daily for cold, flu or COVID-19-like symptoms. Those who develop symptoms should stay home and complete the self-assessment at https://covid19.thrive.health/ and follow the recommendations provided.
People diagnosed with COVID-19 must self-isolate for 10 days after symptom onset. and can Once the 10 days have passed, your fever is gone without the use of fever-reducing medication and you are feeling better, you can stop isolating.
What if I test negative for COVID-19?
After a negative COVID-19 test, there are self-isolation requirements for:
- those with symptoms. Continue to isolate until your symptoms resolve. If your symptoms worsen, contact your health care provider or call 8-1-1.
- those exposed to a case of COVID-19. Continue to self-isolate for 14 days from your last contact with a case of COVID-19. If you develop symptoms, continue to self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started OR 14 days from when you started self-isolating, whichever is longer. If your symptoms worsen, contact your health care provider or call 8-1-1.
- international travellers returning to Canada. You must continue to isolate for 14 days from the day you landed back in Canada. If you develop symptoms, you must continue to self-isolate for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started OR 14 days from when you started self-isolating, whichever is longer. If your symptoms worsen, contact your health care provider or call 8-1-1.
- health care providers. Check with your employer about self-isolation following a negative test and report any symptoms. Workplaces may have different return to work policies after a negative COVID-19 test.
Last update: September 25 at 12 p.m.