Close Contacts

According to the Virginia Department of Health, you generally need to be in close contact with a person who has COVID-19 while they are contagious to get infected. Close contact includes:

  • Living with a person who has COVID-19,
  • Providing care for a person who has COVID-19,
  • Being within 6 feet of a person who has COVID-19 for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, or
  • Having direct exposure to respiratory secretions (e.g., being coughed or sneezed on, sharing a drinking glass or utensils; kissing).

A person with COVID-19 is considered to be contagious starting from 2 days before they became sick (or 2 days before they tested positive if they never had symptoms) until they meet the criteria to discontinue isolation. 

To avoid being a close contact, remain at least 6 feet away from others to the greatest extent possible and avoid being within 6 feet of others for multiple short periods of time over a 24-hour period.

The best thing any of us can do at all times to protect ourselves and others is to strictly comply with public health and safety protocols, including wearing a face covering and maintaining 6 feet of physical distance.

Related information: Contact Tracing