Can Someone who has had COVID-19 spread the illness to others?

The virus that cases COVID-19 is spreading from person-to-person. Someone who is actively sick with COVID-19 can spread the illness to others. That is why CDC recommends that these patients be isolated either in the hospital or at home (depending on how sick they are) until they are better and no longer pose a risk of infecting others.

How long someone is actively sick can vary so the decision on when to release someone from isolation is made on a case-by-case basis in consultation with doctors, infection prevention and control experts, and public health officials and involves considering specifics of each situation including disease severity, illness signs and symptoms, and results of laboratory testing for that patient.

Current CDC guidance for when it is OK to release someone from isolation is made on a case-by-case basis and includes meeting all of the following requirements:

  • The patient is free from fever without the use of fever reducing medications.
  • The patient is no longer showing symptoms, including cough.
  • The patient has tested negative on at least two consecutive respiratory collected at least 24 hours apart.

Someone who has been released from isolation is not considered to pose a risk of infection to others.

Show All Answers

1. What are the symptoms of COVID-19?
2. How does the virus spread?
3. Can Someone who has had COVID-19 spread the illness to others?
4. What is community spread?
5. What can be done to slow the spread of COVID-19 infection?
6. How can I help protect myself?
7. Should I be tested for COVID-19?
8. How is the County handling the testing process?
9. As a result of Governor Gavin Newsom’s recent announcement to add more than 80 community testing sites across the state, will Merced County add a new testing site?
10. I have symptoms, but my Medical Provider won’t recommend testing. What should I do?
11. Who do I call to receive test results for myself or a patient?
12. I do not have symptoms but would like to test to check for immunity. Is there an antibody (convalescent plasma) test available?
13. I was informed by my doctor/employer/dentist/etc... that I was exposed to COVID-19 and to self-quarantine and get tested. However, my doctor did not provide me with a test because they are limited.
14. Where can I register for an appointment?
15. Do I need a prescription from my medical provider to go to the new testing site?
16. Will the community be notified of confirmed patient information as it becomes available to Merced County Department of Public Health (MCDPH)?
17. Does an individual who tests positive for COVID-19 twice get counted as two positive cases in the Merced County Confirmed Cases?
18. How frequently can an individual test positive for COVID-19?
19. ¿Cuáles son los síntomas de COVID-19?
20. ¿Cómo se propaga/contagia el virus?
21. ¿Puede que alguien que haya tenido COVID-19 pueda transmitir la enfermedad a otros?
22. ¿Qué es la propagación comunitaria?
23. ¿Qué se puede hacer para retrasar la propagación de la infección por COVID-19?
24. ¿Debo hacerme la prueba de COVID-19?
25. ¿Cómo está manejando el Condado el proceso de prueba?
26. ¿Una persona que da positivo a la prueba de COVID-19 dos veces se cuenta como dos casos positivos en los casos confirmados del condado de Merced?
27. ¿Con qué frecuencia una persona puede dar positivo en la prueba de COVID-19?