COVID-19 Quarantine Information
Quarantine is a public health technique in which a person is kept away from the general public because they have been exposed to an infectious or contagious disease. An individual is placed on mandatory quarantine when they test positive for COVID-19, or when they have been in close contact with or are a household contact to a positive COVID-19 patient. Mandatory quarantine helps prevent the spread of COVID-19 and is enforceable by Missouri Revised Statute (RsMo) 192.320.
If the St. Charles County Department of Public Health (SCCDPH) determines that you need to be placed on mandatory quarantine, then you must stay home for the duration of your quarantine.
For questions about quarantine, please contact the COVID-19 Information Hotline, 8 a.m.—6 p.m., Monday—Friday, at 636-949-1899.
Duration of Quarantine
Positive Cases (Symptomatic or Asymptomatic Individuals)
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends, and the SCCDPH requires, that individuals who have a positive COVID-19 test be placed on mandatory quarantine and isolate for 10 days, with no fever and no COVID-related symptoms (without medication) for the final 24 hours of the 10-day quarantine to be released. This quarantine may be extended if the person has severe COVID-19 illness.
The 10-day duration of quarantine is based on CDC studies that have determined symptomatic and asymptomatic positive cases generally stop shedding live virus after 10 days if symptoms are absent.
SCCDPH will make a determination if someone will be required to quarantine longer than 10 days, based on symptoms, onset of illness, and disease severity.
Close Contacts or Household Contacts
The CDC recommends, and the SCCDPH requires, that individuals who are a close contact or household contact to a positive COVID-19 case be placed on mandatory quarantine and isolate for 14 days after their last day of exposure to the positive case (meaning, if you were around a positive case on Monday, you would start your 14-day period on Tuesday). The duration of quarantine for close contacts and household contacts is different from positive cases because 14 days is the average incubation period for COVID-19. An incubation period is the time the virus is in your body and you are infected, but do not yet have symptoms. It can take this long for an individual to show symptoms after being exposed to a positive symptomatic or asymptomatic case.
Specifically, for household contacts:
- If the positive case is isolated in the home, quarantine would end 14 days after last exposure to the positive case/when the positive case began quarantine.
- If the positive case is not isolated within the home, quarantine would continue for 14 days starting on the day the positive case is released from quarantine.
Please note that the length of quarantine for household contacts will be extended if:
- The positive COVID-19 patient is not isolated in the house/apartment/residence.
- If the positive case in a household is not completely isolated, including from shared kitchen and bathroom spaces within the house, other members of the household can expect to be quarantined for an additional 14 days after the positive case is released from quarantine.
- Another family member tests positive for COVID-19 who was not isolating previously.
- If you are found to be breaking your quarantine by leaving your home.
Release From Quarantine
Effective November 25, 2020, the Department of Public Health has amended its protocols for release from isolation and quarantine and will no longer provide a release letter at the end of the period. With the guidance provided in a quarantine/isolation notification, individuals will receive information on procedures that will enable them to return to work, school and other activities safely.