When can I return to work after covid positive test?

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All residents of Liverpool have been offered regular coronavirus tests, regardless of whether or not they are displaying symptoms. Public Health director of Liverpool Matthew Ashton said a total of 12,000 people had been tested in the city on Friday throughout six different test centres. Mr Ashton said a further eight sites were introduced over the weekend, while the city said it would be able to extend the two-week test scheme as more testing facilities opened. Healthcare, education and other key workers, alongside students, have been urged to take a test.

When can I return to work after a positive Covid test?

When you can go back to work after testing positive depends on whether or not you were symptomatic at the time of the test.

If you had displayed symptoms and tested positive, you shouldn’t return to work any earlier than 10 days from when the symptoms first began.

This is provided clinical improvement has occurred and you have been non-feverish without medication for a period of 48 hours.

You should also ensure you are medically fit to go back to work before rushing back.

If you have had a cough or loss of or a change in your normal sense of smell or taste, and these are the only symptoms you have after 10 days, you can go back to work.

Again, make sure you’re fit and able to work as these symptoms are known to linger for several weeks in some cases.

Workers can also be tested when they don’t have symptoms where there is a clinical need to do so.

Staff members who test positive for Covid and are asymptomatic at the time of the test have to self isolate for 10 days from the date the test was taken. 

If you remain in good health and feel like you can work, you can go back on the 11th day.

If you develop symptoms during the isolation period, however, you must self isolate for another 10 days from the day the symptoms start.

In this case, you can go back to work no earlier than 10 days from symptom onset.

This is provided your condition has improved and you don’t have any fever without medication for 48 hours beforehand.

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If you have a cough or loss or change in your sense of smell or taste and these are the only prevalent symptoms after 10 days, you can go back to work.

This is, again, provided you are medically fit to work again and you haven’t shown signs of fever without medication for two days.

All members of a household shared with the self-isolating individual should also isolate from the day the person was tested.

However, if any household members develop symptoms during this period, they are required to isolate at home for another 10 days from the onset of symptoms.

If you’re a worker and have been notified through the NHS test and trace system or other national contact tracing service that you’ve been in contact with a positive case, you should inform your line manager and self-isolate for 14 days.

This advice should be followed regardless of any antibody test results you may do.

A positive antibody result means you were previously exposed to the virus, but it’s still unknown whether or not this means a person is immune.

This includes immunity protection against any future infections, so it’s best to stay safe and follow the stay at home guidance.

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