Positive COVID-19 Test? Here Are 7 Steps You Should Take to Keep Yourself and Others Safe

SEPTEMBER 09, 2020

It’s likely that you’re familiar with the main symptoms of COVID-19 and know when it’s time to get tested

But what if you get a positive result? Whether you are experiencing symptoms or are asymptomatic, getting a positive COVID-19 result can be nerve-wracking. It’s understandable to have your mind swirling with questions about what you should do next and in what order you should do it in.

Here’s our recommendation: 

1. Inform Those You Live With 

The first step is to inform those you live with and encourage them to get tested as well. Above anyone, they are the individuals who have the highest likelihood of being exposed to the virus and carriers as well.

Unfortunately, COVID-19 spreads like a domino effect. It’s important to update your household as soon as possible so they can get in touch with people they’ve recently been in contact with as well as to mitigate the spread by quarantining. 

If you live with someone who is at a higher risk or immunocompromised, quarantine yourself from them as best as possible. 

2. Inform Those You’ve Been in Contact With Over the Past Two Weeks

Next, you need to reach out to anyone you’ve been in contact with over the past two weeks. This is because it can take 2 to14 days for you to show symptoms of carrying the virus and it’s important not to rule out any recent interaction. 

A positive COVID-19 result is inherently a difficult topic to discuss and it can feel intimidating to tell your friend that you openly saw three days ago that you tested positive for the virus. That being said, moving past the stigma and practicing compassionate communication is vital for stopping the spread and protecting your loved ones. 

Here are a few things to remember when you’re gearing up to call that list of people: 

  • It is understandable that you’re feeling anxious about others’ reactions as well as the state of your own health; we are in a pandemic and getting sick can feel scary
  • Coronavirus can spread extremely quickly, one contact could turn into 30+ infected individuals
  • Not communicating is the same as contributing to the spread of this virus
  • You are doing people a favor by letting them know, and you could save lives by doing so

Above all, remember that those you care about also care about you and at the end of the day, will appreciate the transparency. 

3. Update Work

Depending on the nature of your profession or job, you may already be remote full-time. Even so, you should update your boss or supervisor on your condition. Obviously, if you are experiencing symptoms, it’s likely you’ll need to take some sick days and your job needs to know, but even if you’re currently asymptomatic, you should still update them. It’s possible you could feel under the weather in the future and your work should prepare for that. It’s important to note that the CDC has some helpful recommendations on this topic; including that unless you get back a negative COVID-19 test, it’s recommended to quarantine for fourteen days.

4. Set a Plan for Picking Up Necessities 

From the moment you know that you are positive for the virus, it’s important to stay home and isolate yourself from others. That being said, it might be the time of the week when you normally need to pick up groceries, prescriptions or other necessities. 

As soon as you can, get a plan in place for a friend or family member to pick up what you need and drop it off outside of your home. Even if you wear a mask and gloves while running errands, you are unnecessarily putting others at risk. There’s no shame in doing everything you can to protect others and asking for help from the people who care about you. 

There are also many grocery delivery options such as Instacart, Postmates, and Doordash. As well, Publix and Walmart both offer contactless pickup at many of their locations.

5. Cancel Upcoming, In-Person Appointments

Have a non-emergency doctor’s appointment coming up? Hair or nail session? Car maintenance? Work meeting? 

It’s imperative that you promptly cancel any in-person, non-emergency appointments you have within the upcoming weeks. Unless it’s necessary to survive, cancel it.

6. Cancel Plans With Friends and Family

There is no meet-up with a friend or family event important enough to risk exposing the people you love to the virus. 

Make sure to take the time within the first two days of receiving a positive result to cancel any standing plans you have over the next two weeks. You don’t want to forget until the day of and be left in a sticky situation because you didn’t accurately communicate, especially if someone is relying on you for something that you can no longer provide due to isolating. 

7. Monitor Your Symptoms 

As the days go by following your positive test result, monitor your symptoms carefully. If at any point they become serious — increase past what is manageable or you’re beginning to have difficulty breathing — call your doctor or visit your local ER Near Me immediately. In this situation, it is important to be proactive and stay as safe as possible. 
Looking for rapid COVID-19 testing in the Dallas-Fort Worth area? Visit Lab Testing Near Me and receive same-day results!