A casual contact is defined as someone who has had face-to-face contact for less than 15 minutes cumulative over the course of a week, or been in the same closed space for less than 2 hours, with a person with a COVID-19 infection while they were infectious. This may include healthcare workers, other patients, or visitors who were in the same closed healthcare space as a case, but for shorter periods than those required for a close contact. Other closed settings might include schools or offices.
Casual contacts are NOT required to self-isolate in their homes UNLESS they develop symptoms.
Monitor for symptoms and seek help if they develop
Casual contacts should monitor for symptoms for 14 days after their last casual contact with the person with COVID-19
Symptoms to look out for include:
- sore throat
- shortness of breath (difficulty breathing).
- Other early symptoms to watch for are chills, body aches, sore throat, headache and runny nose or muscle pain.
If symptoms develop, get tested
If symptoms develop:
- Seek testing. To find out about testing:
- Call the healthdirect hotline on 1800 022 222. When you call, tell them you are a casual contact.
- Call your local doctor to make an appointment for COVID-19 testing and tell them you are a casual contact.
- Visit your nearest COVID-19 clinic. When you arrive, immediately tell staff that you are a casual contact of a person with COVID-19.
- Follow the advice in the home isolation guidance for people suspected to have COVID-19 infection.
Note: If you go to see a doctor make sure you wear a surgical mask while you go there. You should travel directly to the doctor or COVID-19 clinic by foot (where practical) or private car. NSW Health advises you not to use public transport.
If you become severely unwell and it’s a medical emergency you should phone 000. Tell the ambulance staff that you are a casual contact of a person with COVID-19.