Peel Region homepage
Peel Region
main

Have symptoms or been exposed to COVID-19

What to do if you have symptoms, have been exposed to a person with COVID-19, or if you’ve tested positive.

In Peel, self-isolation is a requirement under the Class Order issued by the Medical Officer of Health under Section 22 of the Health Protection and Promotion Act. Find out what the Class Order on self-isolation means for you.

If you need help deciding if you should get tested for COVID-19, take the online self-assessment.

If you have symptoms

If you have symptoms of COVID-19:

Get details about how to self-isolate and resources available to help you.

If you've been exposed

If you have been in close contact with a person who has COVID-19, you must self-isolate for 14 days, even if your test result is negative. Children or those requiring support with daily living can isolate together with a caregiver.

Follow these testing recommendations based on your situation:

The people you live with should also stay home during your 14-day self-isolation period, except for essential reasons such as picking up groceries or prescriptions. During this time:

Close contacts may have to self-isolate for more than 14 days in certain situations, such as if they were unable to self-isolate away from the person with COVID-19, if they were re-exposed to COVID-19 during this time, or, if they test positive for COVID-19.

Get details about how to self-isolate and resources available to help you.

If you have COVID-19

Follow these instructions if you have tested positive for COVID-19.

Other information

COVID-19 is a new respiratory virus, that is commonly spread through respiratory droplets or by touching something that had the virus on it.

While some people may experience flu-like symptoms, others may have mild symptoms or no symptoms at all. People can spread the virus before they start showing symptoms and can remain infectious for 10 days or longer after their symptoms started.

It's important that you do not ignore symptoms, even if they are mild, to avoid spreading COVID-19.

Common symptoms include:

  • fever
  • new or worsening cough
  • shortness of breath

A range of other symptoms may include:

  • sore throat or trouble swallowing
  • runny nose or stuffy nose
  • new loss of sense of smell or taste
  • nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, abdominal pain
  • not feeling well (tired or sore muscles)
  • headache

Look for symptoms that are new, getting worse, or different than usual for you.

Less common symptoms may occur. Special attention should be paid if they happen in children, seniors, and people living with a developmental disability.

For more information, the Ontario Ministry of Health provides an outline of the signs and symptoms of COVID-19.

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, self-isolate and get tested.

A close contact is a person who has had face-to-face contact with a person who has COVID-19 while they were infectious, which is generally 2 days before their symptoms started and up until their self-isolation period is complete. It also includes the following:

  • Having 15 minutes or more of total exposure which includes every time there was an exposure while the person with COVID-19 was infectious
  • The contact was within 2 meters of the person with COVID-19
  • It does not matter if either the case or contact was wearing a mask

A shorter interaction time may be considered by Public Health in certain circumstances (e.g., interaction was in a small indoor space). In certain workplaces such as health care settings, other factors including appropriate use of personal protective equipment (PPE) may also be considered.

You’re also a close contact if you’re caring for someone with COVID-19 without using PPE. Find out what precautions to take if you’re caring for someone with COVID-19.

What to do if you’re a close contact

If you’re a close contact, you will likely be notified by the person with COVID-19 who you came into contact with. You may also receive a notification through the COVID Alert app. Public health will only notify close contacts in certain outbreak situations or in specific circumstances.

Follow these instructions if you’ve been exposed to COVID-19.

If you're unsure if you should be tested for COVID-19, speak to a health care provider or take the online self-assessment to help you decide.

If you have symptoms but don't get tested

You must self-isolate for at least 10 days from the start of your symptoms and remain in self-isolation until your symptoms have been improving for at least 24 hours and you have no fever (your temperature remains lower than 37.8 C without the use of medication).

You must not leave your home or go to work or school during this time. Your household contacts must self-isolate for at least 14 days from their last exposure to you.

If you were exposed to a person with COVID-19 but don't get tested

You must self-isolate for at least 14 days after your last exposure to a person with COVID-19.

You may have to self-isolate for more than 14 days in certain situations, such as if you were unable to self-isolate away from the person with COVID-19, if you were re-exposed to COVID-19 during this time, or, if you test positive for COVID-19.

Even if you do not have symptoms, the people you live with should stay home for 14 days from their last exposure to you and self-monitor for symptoms. If anyone in the house develops symptoms, they must self-isolate and arrange to get tested as soon as possible.

Find out what to do if you have a child attending school or going to child care.

Peel's requirement to self-isolate

In Peel, self-isolation is a requirement under the Class Order issued by the Medical Officer of Health under Section 22 of the Health Protection and Promotion Act. Find out what the Class Order on self-isolation means for you.

If you travelled outside of Canada in the past 14 days:

If you’re a health care worker or work in a health care facility and have COVID-19 or symptoms of COVID-19, or you've been exposed to a person who has COVID-19, follow the occupational health policy at your workplace and refer to our health care workers section for more information on testing and self-isolation guidance.