COVID-19 Testing Follow-up Instructions

Negative Results

If your COVID-19 test is negative, continue to monitor your health daily. If you were tested because of a known exposure to Covid-19, you will still need to quarantine for 14 days from the date of your last known exposure.

Best way to avoid infection:

The best way to prevent infection is to avoid being exposed to the virus.  People should follow masking recommendations, avoid travel unnecessary travel, practice social distancing and follow basic prevention measures:

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.  This especially important after using the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.  If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid touching high-touch surfaces in public.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Stay home if you are sick
  • Cover your coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using regular household cleaning spray or wipes

Positive Results

If your result is positive, you will need to isolate at home. You will be contacted by a case investigator from Maine CDC as soon they are able to, it may not be the same day you receive your result. They will ask for a list of your close contacts to notify them that they have been exposed to someone with Covid-19. However, you can notify your close contacts as soon as you get the positive result. The sooner your close contacts are notified the sooner they can quarantine, contact a provider, and will not be unknowingly putting others at risk.  

Self-Care Instructions

If you have COVID-19, the following instructions will help you to care for yourself and prevent the spread of the disease to others.

Steps to take to care for yourself at home:

  • Get plenty of rest and drink plenty of fluids such as water, Gatorade and juice.
  • Take acetaminophen (Tylenol) for fevers and body aches
  • Cover you coughs and sneezes with a tissue or your elbow.
  • Avoid touching your face.
  • Wash your hands often using soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
  • If you think you’re getting sicker, call your healthcare provider for direction or call and go to the emergency room.

Steps to take to prevent spreading the virus to others:

  • Stay home except to seek medical care.
  • Avoid close contact with others in your home, including pets.  Close contact means being within six (6) feet of others.  If possible, sleep in a separate room and use a different bathroom.  If you must be near others, wear a mask, wash your hands often and clean and disinfect commonly used items frequently.
  • Anyone in close contact with you should quarantine for 14 days and notify a healthcare provider if they develop symptoms.

When to discontinue home isolation:

  • Isolation and precautions can generally be discontinued 10 days after symptom onset and resolution of fever for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing medications, and with improvement of other symptoms.
    • A limited number of persons with severe illness may produce replication-competent virus beyond 10 days that may warrant extending duration of isolation and precautions for up to 20 days
  • If you had a positive test, but never developed symptoms, isolation and other precautions can be discontinued 10 days after the date of the first positive test for COVID-19.

It is very important for yourself and others that you follow these instructions carefully.