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Coronavirus: ministry again calls on contacts of confirmed cases to stick to rules

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Photo: CNA

Citing isolated cases of non-compliance, the health ministry on Wednesday again called on contacts of confirmed coronavirus cases to stick to the rules to self-isolate and not to head out on their own for a test.

In a written statement and on the back of tighter restrictions as the number of Covid-19 cases surge, the ministry said that those who test positive either with a PCR or a rapid antigen test are considered confirmed cases and must self-isolate and immediately notify their close contacts.

Close contacts declared to the epidemiological surveillance unit by the confirmed case must automatically self-isolate and await instructions from the health ministry.

Within 24 hours of their name being given, close contacts will receive a text message with instructions. Within the following few days they will receive a telephone call from the health ministry to arrange an appointment for a PCR test.

“In no circumstances should people declared as close contacts break their self-isolation and go to have a test or go to locations where rapid tests are being carried out,” it said.

It also warned that taking a test immediately after a contact with a positive case may give a misleading result (false negative) and does not exempt the individual with the negative result from the obligation to self-isolate.

The ministry clarified that in all cases, close contacts undergo a PCR and not a rapid antigen test.

The self-isolation period of close contacts is I4 days. The individual in question can end quarantine earlier provided they carry out a PCR test with a negative result on the 10th day after contact with the confirmed case, and provided there are no symptoms.

Personal doctors should be notified and instructions adhered to in the event of Covid-19 symptoms at any time during self-isolation, the health ministry concluded.

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