What is the definition a close contact to a positive COVID-19 case? If a person has 15 minutes or more of exposure over the course of a day, would they be considered a close contact?
Based on CDC and DHS guidance, one definition of a close contact is being within 6 feet of a person with confirmed or probable COVID-19 for at least 15 minutes during a single day. For example, this could be 15+ minutes of sustained contact closer than 6 feet or three, five minute periods of contact closer than 6 feet over the course a day. Both of these examples would be considered close contact.
Close contacts should wait at least 48 hours after exposure before they are tested,
because COVID-19 is most commonly first detectable 3-5 days after exposure.
A negative test result does not exempt a close contact from the requirement to quarantine,
which should be continued for the recommended 14 days in all cases. In some cases, repeat testing near the end of the quarantine period may be considered to exclude asymptomatic infection before resuming activities that involve close contact with individuals at risk for severe COVID-19.