What happens if I test positive to a rapid antigen test on day six?

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Close contacts of confirmed cases are required to self-isolate for seven days starting from the testing date of the positive PCR test.

Covid-19 rapid antigen test kits.
You no longer need to pass a day six rapid antigen test to leave isolation under new rules. (Bloomberg)

If they start to develop symptoms, they are required to get a PCR test themselves.

If not, they are required to take a rapid antigen test on day six. If they test negative, they are free to leave isolation on the seventh day.

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But what if they test positive?

What happens if my test result on day six is positive?

If you receive a positive rapid antigen test result on day six, then you need to go and get a PCR test.

At some testing sites, you are urged to turn on their hazard lights or otherwise indicate you have returned a positive rapid antigen test.

If the PCR test also comes back positive, then you need to spend another seven days in isolation.

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This means it will be a 14-day isolation period.

What about confirmed COVID-19 cases?

If you’re a confirmed COVID-19 case and have symptoms on day seven, you should go and get a PCR test and stay in isolation.

If that PCR test returns a positive result, then you have to stay in isolation for another seven days.

If by day seven, you don’t have any symptoms as a COVID-19 case, you’re free to leave isolation, however are urged to avoid high-risk settings such as hospitals and aged care facilities.

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Posters for COVID-19 rapid antigen test, outside a pharmacy in Sydney.
Posters for COVID-19 rapid antigen test, outside a pharmacy in Sydney. (Flavio Brancaleone)

What’s the new definition of a close contact?

As of midnight, a close contact of a positive COVID-19 case can now be defined as “a household contact, or a household-like contact, of a confirmed case only”.

Not an interaction in a retail store, supermarket, bar or restaurant, only somebody that a person has spent over four hours with inside a home.

“A household contact is someone who lives with a case or has spent more than four hours with them in a house, accommodation or care facility setting,” Prime Minister Scott Morrison said yesterday.

“You are only a close contact if you are, effectively, living with someone or have been in an accommodation setting with someone.”

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The queue for COVID-19 testing stretches as far as the eye can see in Liverpool in Sydney.
The queue for COVID-19 testing stretches as far as the eye can see in Liverpool in Sydney. (Dean Sewell)

I haven’t been in contact with a COVID-19 case inside a home and don’t show symptoms, do I go about life as normal?

Yes. If you don’t fulfil the new definition of a close contact then there is no need for you to be in the line for a PCR test.

“You should go home. Go to the beach, go and do what you want to do. Read a book in the park,” Mr Morrison said.

Sydneysiders taking advantage of the warm weather at Tamarama Beach.
Sydneysiders taking advantage of the warm weather at Tamarama Beach. (Jessica Hromas)
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“Follow all the normal, common-sense things that you would do, monitor your symptoms, followed the COVID say practices, make sure you have booked for your booster, do all of those sorts of things.”

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