What Should You Do?
Below is guidance for scenarios when you are sick, self-quarantined or unable to work.
If you are sick with flu-like symptoms
If you are sick with symptoms such as coughing, sneezing, fever or respiratory problems and feel you need medical attention, please seek medical care. If you have these symptoms and were exposed by travel to an area where there is community transmission or by a confirmed case of COVID-19, call ahead so that proper precautions can be taken. Do not go to emergency rooms unless it is essential. Emergency rooms need to be able to serve those with most critical needs. If you are experiencing flu-like symptoms but don’t feel like you need medical attention, it is not necessary to seek medical attention to be tested for COVID-19. Get information and answers about testing criteria here.
If you are in self-quarantine or isolation
There may be instances when you are advised by your medical provider to self-quarantine at home due to possible exposure. You should:
- Consult with your health care provider for more information about monitoring your health for symptoms of COVID-19.
- Stay in touch with others by phone or email. You may need to ask for help from friends, family, neighbors, community health workers, etc. if you become sick.
- Watch for symptoms and emergency warning signs.
- Pay attention to potential COVID-19 symptoms including fever, cough and shortness of breath. If you develop symptoms, call your medical provider.
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19, get medical attention immediately.
In adults, emergency warning signs* include:
- Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
- Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
- New mental confusion or inability to wake someone
- Bluish lips or face
- This list is not all inclusive. Please consult your medical provider for any other symptom that is severe.
If you were directed to care for yourself at home due to COVID-19 symptoms, or suspected that you had coronavirus and were self-isolating, when can isolation end?
You may discontinue self-home isolation under the following conditions:
- At least 3 days (72 hours) have passed since recovery defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath); and,
- At least 7 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
- At least 14 days after expected exposure.
- If you are under an isolation or quarantine order you must receive clearance from Public Health before discontinuing.
Get full guidance including a test-based approach
If you are unable to work after being exposed to COVID-19
Individuals who are unable to work due to having or being exposed to COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional) can file a Disability Insurance (DI) claim.
Disability Insurance provides short-term benefit payments to eligible workers who have full or partial loss of wages due to a non-work-related illness, injury, or pregnancy. Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50 - $1,300 a week.
Californians who are unable to work because they are caring for an ill or quarantined family member with COVID-19 (certified by a medical professional) can file a Paid Family Leave (PFL) claim.
Paid Family Leave provides up to six weeks of benefit payments to eligible workers who have a full or partial loss of wages because they need time off work to care for a seriously ill family member or to bond with a new child. Benefit amounts are approximately 60-70 percent of wages (depending on income) and range from $50-$1,300 a week.
For more information related to resources for California's Employers and Workers, please visit this Labor and Workforce Development Agency webpage.