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Close Contact Notification Questions and Answers

Why am I being asked to notify my own close contacts?

COVID-19 cases are surging and the number of potential close contacts for each case is also much larger than previously when gathering sizes and household bubbles were limited. Public health does not have the human resource capacity to be able to notify all close contacts in a timely manner. This would mean close contacts may not be aware and are at risk of further transmission.

How will I know who are considered my close contacts?

Close contacts may include anyone who you have shared an indoor or outdoor space with while you were infectious, including:

  • Household members
  • Friends and extended family
  • Social acquaintances, teams and groups
  • Coworkers School or daycare, if your child is a case

What if my close contacts are fully vaccinated?

If your contact is fully vaccinated, they may not be considered a close contact. Contacts are considered fully vaccinated if it has been at least 14 days since their second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at time of exposure.

Once the fully vaccinated contact is aware of the potential exposure to COVID-19, they should self-monitor for 10 days for any symptoms and use a rapid test on day five to seven after the exposure as part of case surveillance.

How will I know what to tell them?

COVID-19 positive individuals will receive a call from Public Health confirming their positive status and will conduct a brief interview. Public Health will provide information on how to identify and notify their contacts.

Will I have to tell them to self-isolate?

No. Public Health will ask COVID-19 positive individuals to notify their contacts directly of their potential exposure and provide them with a fact sheet. You will not need to ask your contacts whether they are vaccinated or if they have symptoms or provide any individual advice.

What if I have been in a large public gathering like a Rider game or a bar or a business during the time I may have been infectious?

The interview with public health will determine whether you have been in any public venues during your infectious period. Individuals do not have to notify those places directly.

What happens if I choose not to notify my close contacts?

It can be difficult to disclose to disclose a COVID-19-positive status The virus is prevalent and can happen to anyone. Letting friends, family, co-workers and acquaintances know about their potential exposure is a courtesy to keep not only them safe but also potentially preventing the spread to their family and friends.

What if I choose not to self-isolate after being told I'm COVID positive?

The decision not to self-isolate while COVID-19 positive will knowingly put others, including family and friends, at risk of serious illness. The chain of transmission can spread quickly causing illness in larger and larger numbers of people and contribute to prolonging the pandemic.

What is happening in schools? Who is doing the contact tracing for those situations?

The Saskatchewan Health Authority and Ministry of Health are working together to review the protocols around school case managing and contact tracing. We hope to have more information to share in the coming days.

What if my close contact refuses to self-isolate. Do I have to do anything about that?

You do not have to take responsibility for another person's actions. You have done your part by letting them know that they have been potentially exposed to the COVID-19 virus and are at risk of transmitting the virus to others.

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