What should you do if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19 and you’re vaccinated?

DENVER (KDVR) — The holidays are approaching, and many people will be gathering with family to celebrate. But what happens if you find out you have been exposed to COVID-19?

If you have been fully vaccinated, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there are still steps you should take if you have been exposed:

  • You should still get tested if you’ve had close contact with someone who has COVID-19 or if you have symptoms of COVID-19
    • If you’ve had close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you should get tested 5-7 days after your exposure, even if you don’t have symptoms. You should also wear a mask indoors in public for 14 days following exposure or until your test result is negative
    • If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you should get tested and stay home and away from others
    • If your test result is positive, isolate at home for 10 days
  • You will still need to follow guidance at your workplace and local businesses

When should you quarantine?

Guidelines for when to quarantine for COVID-19 have changed throughout the pandemic. Here’s what the CDC says you know about quarantining no matter what your vaccination status is:

  • You should quarantine for 14-days after your last exposure to that person if you have been in close contact (within 6 feet of someone for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period) with someone who has COVID-19, unless you have been fully vaccinated.
  • People who are fully vaccinated do NOT need to quarantine after contact with someone who has COVID-19 unless they have symptoms
    • However, fully vaccinated people should get tested 5-7 days after their exposure, even if they don’t have symptoms and wear a mask indoors in public for 14 days following exposure or until their test result is negative

The CDC said that if you think you have COVID-19 or have COVID-19, you can be around others after:

  • 10 days since symptoms first appeared and
  • 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and
  • Other symptoms of COVID-19 are improving*

*Loss of taste and smell may persist for weeks or months after recovery and need not delay the end of isolation​