Self-isolate if you have COVID-19

If you test positive for COVID-19 you must self-isolate for 7 days.  This helps stops the spread to others around you and the wider community. 

Household Contacts do not need to isolate. If you are a Household Contact, you should test daily for 5 days with a rapid antigen test (RAT) from the day the person with COVID-19 tested positive.

Starting your self-isolation

The day you begin self-isolation  is called Day 0.

You must begin your self-isolation from whichever of these dates came first:

  • the date you developed symptoms
  • the date you tested positive (if you did not have symptoms).

Ending your self-isolation

The last day of your self-isolation is whichever of these came first:

  • 7 days after your symptoms started
  • 7 days after you got a positive test result.

The day you can continue your normal activities, including work, is called Day 8. 

  • Some people may get a text message confirming that their self-isolation has ended, although no official text message is needed for anyone to leave isolation. 
  • You do not need to test to leave isolation. If you do, the result would likely show as a positive result but that does not mean you are infectious.


What it means to self isolate

When you self-isolate
  • do not go to work or school. Remember to let people know that you are self-isolating. Find out more here 
  • do not go to any public places
  • do not use public transport
  • do not have any visitors in your home, unless they are providing healthcare, emergency maintenance or emergency services, or providing a no-contact essentials delivery.



Permitted reason to leave self-isolation
  • to get tested or go for a medical examination
  • move to another place of self-isolation in order to preserve your own or another person's life, health or safety
  • attend any court, tribunal, New Zealand Parole Board hearing, or other judicial institution you are required to attend
  • visit a dying relative who is not expected to live beyond your 7 days of self-isolation
  • visit the body of a relative before a funeral or tangihanga if you will not be able visit the body after your 7 days of self-isolation.

Exercising during self-isolation

You can exercise outdoors in your neighbourhood (but not at a swimming pool or gym or other communal area).

You must physically distance from other people but you do not need to wear a mask.

Stick to gentle, familiar exercise. Do not take on new or risky activities that may lead to a need for you to be rescued.


Continue to take your normal medications as usual. If you need any medication, contact your GP or pharmacy and tell them you are in home isolation. Ask them to send your prescription to a pharmacy, who will deliver it to you for free.

If you still have symptoms

If you still have symptoms on day 8, we advise you to stay at home until 24 hours after they resolve. If your symptoms get worse or you need urgent medical care, call your local healthcare provider or Healthline on 0800 358 5453

   Managing your symptoms   

Once you have recovered from COVID-19

Help and Support 

Call the COVID-19 Healthline 0800 358 5453 (24 hours 7 days a week) and always call 111 in an emergency.

There are other support options and resources available that can help you and your whānau during this time.  

   Help and support  resourcesMental wellbeing   Managing symptoms


  WhanauHQ quick guide (PDF)   Language Resources ( A → 文 )