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All Covid-19 contact tracing to be stopped with immediate effect, says Department of Health

Picture: IANS

Picture: IANS

Published Dec 24, 2021

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Durban: The National Department of Health announced on Thursday all Covid-19 contact tracing will be stopped with immediate effect, except in congregate settings and cluster outbreak situations or self-contained settings.

The department said all contacts must continue with their normal duties with heightened monitoring (daily temperature testing and symptom screening) of any early signs.

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If they develop symptoms, they should be tested and managed according to the severity of the symptoms, said the department.

Quarantining:

The Department of Health said all quarantine is to be stopped with immediate effect for those who have come into contact with a Covid-19 positive person.

This applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated contacts. In addition, no testing for Covid-19 is required irrespective of the risk exposure unless the contact becomes symptomatic.

Isolation:

Isolation rules are applicable to both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals and are applicable to high and low-risk individuals.

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All people that have been infected and have been in isolation, must be ready to return to work after completing mandatory period of isolation as above and no further testing is required after either eight or 10 days of isolation.

Mild Disease:

According to department, people with mild disease should isolate for eight days and anything beyond 8 days must be supported by the medical report.

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Mild diseases refer to persons who have symptoms and have tested positive but who do not require hospitalisation, do not have shortness of breath, dyspnoea or abnormal chest imaging.

Mild disease symptoms and signs include but are not limited to the following: fever; cough; sore throat; malaise; headache; muscle pain; nausea; vomiting; diarrhoea; and, loss of taste and smell.

Asymptomatic Individuals:

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There was no isolation period required. The Health Department advised individuals to do self-observation for between five and seven days for development of any symptoms with enhanced precautions, including avoiding attending settings where many people gather; mask wearing; and, social distancing.

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