What should you do if you test positive for COVID-19?

What should you do if you test positive for COVID-19?

As the Omicron variant continues to spread and holiday gatherings continue into the new year, COVID-19 cases in the region and country might not yet be at their peak.

One way to try to limit the spread of the virus is to test yourself before going to a family get-together. But if you test positive for COVID-19, what do you do?

For starters, you should do your best not to spread the virus further, Advocate Aurora Health Chief Nursing Officer Mary Beth Kingston said.

“Isolate. Isolate from your family members if possible. We know not everyone has the space and ability to do that, but stay in a separate room,” Kingston said. “If you are around other members of your family, mask.”

“Stay hydrated and monitor your symptoms. And if they worsen, call your care provider or seek help,” she said. “For example, if someone develops increasing shortness of breath your chest pain, you need to be seen then. Otherwise, if symptoms are mild, rest up and hydrate and isolate.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends you isolate for 10 days and can be around others once you’ve gone 24 hours with no fever without taking fever-reducing medications and your other symptoms are improving.

Kingston made the comments to reporters on Sunday while speaking about a full-page ad Advocate Aurora Health placed in major Illinois and Wisconsin newspapers, urging the public that “We can’t stop COVID without you.” The health system made the plea as hospitalizations continue to rise during the latest pandemic wave.

“More than 90% of all COVID inpatients are unvaccinated or due for a booster,” the ad reads. “This is preventable, but only if we work together.”

Learn more about COVID vaccines at aah.org/vaccine.

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About the Author

Mike Riopell
Mike Riopell

Mike Riopell, health enews contributor, is a media relations coordinator with Advocate Health Care and Aurora Health Care. He previously worked as a reporter and editor covering politics and government for the Chicago Tribune, Daily Herald and Bloomington Pantagraph, among others. He enjoys bicycles, home repair, flannel shirts and being outside.