Quarantine/Isolation & Contact Tracing/Work Letters 



Contact Tracing: Illinois Department of Public Health (IDPH) now has a centralized contact tracing system to address the high volume of COVID-19 cases. If you test positive for COVID-19 or were in close contact with someone who tested positive, you will get a call or text from IL COVID HELP or your local health department direct line. You should call back or click to follow the text link website for information and to opt in to get return to school/work letters. This is the number and link you will see from IDPH:    Call 312-777-1999 or click: https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/community-guidance/confirmed-or-possible-covid-19.html 

Delay of Return to Work Letters for Businesses:  With the current high volume of cases and with the shortened isolation and quarantine periods, a positive individual &/or close contact may not receive a return to work letter before their quarantine/isolation periods are finished and they can return to work. (Example: An employee may not have a letter available to present to employer to prove that isolation/quarantine is over.) Unless the state requires a return to work letter for some businesses, other businesses may want to re-evaluate their protocols in requiring return to work letters. Please note that many schools have trained for contact tracing and will continue to assist with contact tracing and return to school letters for their school children.

At-Home/Over the Counter COVID-19 Testing Not Used for Return to Work Letters: At-home COVID-19 test results, where both specimen collection and testing are conducted at home, are not recorded or reported to public health for the purpose of public health follow-up. These tests will not be used for use in a return to work letter. Only lab-based PCR tests will be used as a follow-up test for return to work letters. See lab-based Testing sites in the area.

Quarantine/isolation Guidance can be found at IDPH for the general public:  https://dph.illinois.gov/covid19/community-guidance/quarantine-guidance.html

Fully Vaccinated individuals do NOT need to quarantine after contact with someone who had COVID-19 unless they have symptoms. However, fully vaccinated people should get tested 5-7 days after their exposure, even if they don’t have symptoms, and wear a mask indoors in around others for 10 days following exposure. More information on CDC guidelines .

Schools Guidance: See the ISBE website for guidance and CDC information: https://www.isbe.net/Pages/covid19.aspx