Covid-19: what to do when you are in a “contact case”?


At work, at school or in everyday life, the rules change depending on the vaccination schedule of the “contact” person.

As France faces a large-scale fifth wave, the number of people testing positive is exploding. At the time of the vaccines, when are we considered to be “contact case“? How should you act at work, or at school? Le Figaro make the point.

Let us first specify in which case you are concerned: you are considered as a contact case if you have had direct contact of less than two meters with the positive person: conversation, meal, physical contact, or if you have shared an interior space for at least 15 consecutive minutes. This definition is valid regardless of the variant detected (Delta or Omicron). The people in question are required to comply with health rules depending on the progress of their vaccination schedule. On the one hand, those who completed it. On the other hand, incomplete regimens and unvaccinated. As of Monday January 3, these isolation rules change. The Minister of Health Olivier Véran took stock in an interview with the Journal Du Dimanche.

  • In everyday life

If you have a complete vaccine schedule against Covid-19, you no longer have to isolate yourself. On the other hand, you must carry out a first screening test as soon as you learn the news, followed by two reimbursed self-tests (on the second and fourth days). To obtain these, it will suffice to go to the pharmacy with proof of the negative test and complete a declaration on the honor of being a contact case. If one of the self-tests is positive you will need to confirm it with a new PCR or antigen test.

If any of the PCR or antigen tests are positive, you will be required to self-isolate for 7 days. However, discharge after 5 days will be possible in the event of a negative PCR or antigen test and in the absence of symptoms for more than 48 hours.

– If you are not vaccinated against Covid-19, you must carry out a first antigen test or PCR. Even in the event of a negative result, you are required to observe isolation at home for 7 days. You must also be tested a second time, 7 days after the last contact.

If any of the PCR or antigen tests are positive, you will be required to self-isolate for 10 days. However, discharge after 7 days will be possible in the event of a negative PCR or antigen test and in the absence of symptoms for more than 48 hours.

  • In elementary school

A new health protocol in schools was unveiled on the eve of the start of the January 3 school year by the Minister of National Education Jean-Michel Blanquer in the columns of the Parisian. “From this Monday, we are strengthening our contact-tracing policy“. As soon as a positive case is detected, all the students in the class must be tested (PCR or antigen) immediately and present the negative result to return to class. Then, families will receive two free self-tests to test the children on the second and fourth days: three tests in four days. These measures apply to children who are vaccinated or not. As a reminder, children aged 5 to 11 have been eligible since December 22. If the pupil is positive, isolation for 7 days, which can be reduced to five in the absence of symptoms and negative PCR or antigen test.

Health protocol in schools and colleges-high schools. Ministry of Education

For students under 12 and those vaccinated, the protocol is the same as in elementary school: if a positive case is detected, no isolation, but PCR or antigen test the same day and two self-tests on the second and fourth day. And if a PCR or antigen test is positive, isolation for five or even seven days.

For students aged 12 and over without full vaccination, in the event of a positive case in the class, they will have to continue the distance learning for 7 days. At the end of the isolation they will have to carry out an antigen test or PCR.

SEE ALSO – Children, teenagers: the sacrificed in the management of Covid-19?

The rules of everyday life apply : no isolation if you have a complete vaccination schedule and negative tests. Likewise, the duration of isolation is reduced for positive cases. The aim is to reduce absenteeism in companies. The lack of quarantine also applies to contact cases who live in the same household as the infected people. Nevertheless, as announced by the Prime Minister, Jean Castex, teleworking is compulsory “for those who can” and “at least three days” per week.

If you are positive for Covid, whether or not you are vaccinated, you must isolate yourself from the day the test is performed if it is positive. If it is impossible to telework, it should be declared on the site declare.ameli.fr, in order to benefit from the payment of daily allowances without waiting period. The period of isolation is the same as for everyday life. He is also asked to warn his employer and help him define the list of risky contact cases.

If you need to babysit a child under 16 because his school is closed or because he has been identified as a contact case, a request for partial unemployment may be made. This is only valid for one parent and if teleworking is not possible. If neither of the parents can be placed on partial unemployment, one of the two can benefit from a work stoppage. To do this, you must declare yourself on the Health Insurance website. No waiting period or qualifying conditions will be applied.

If your child under 16 tests positive for Covid-19 and needs to self-isolate, for employees who cannot telework, one of the child’s parents can request a compensated derogatory work stoppage of 7 days, without waiting period, with an employer supplement, whether or not he is vaccinated. For the self-employed, liberal professions, contractors under public law who cannot telework, one of the parents can also request a derogatory work stoppage without waiting period. For officials who cannot telework an ASA request (special leave of absence is authorized).


SEE ALSO – Covid-19: What to do?

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