You should get tested if (1) you have COVID symptoms, (2) you have been in close contact with someone who has a confirmed COVID-19 case, or (3) you have taken part in high-risk activities such as travel, large gatherings, or have been in crowded indoor settings. Close contact is defined as being within six feet or less for 15 minutes or more (cumulative in a 24-hour period) with a COVID-19 confirmed case. All household contacts of a positive COVID-19 case are strongly recommended to be tested as soon as symptoms start or 5 to 7 days after exposure if symptom-free. In addition, those who have been in close contact need to quarantine for at least 10 days but preferably 14 days while checking for fever or symptoms daily through day 14.
Quarantine immediately for 10-14 days, monitor for symptoms, and get tested 5 to 7 days after exposure or sooner if you develop symptoms.
The reported rate of false negatives is about 20% for antibody tests and 20% for a diagnostic test administered at 7 days after exposure (Harvard Health Publishing, December 2020). This is due to the time it takes for the virus to build up enough within the body to become recognizable by a test. PCR testing is the gold standard with very accurate results.
Symptoms of COVID-19 and cold-like symptoms are very similar depending on the severity of the disease as some people only have cold-like symptoms and some have a myriad of symptoms more like the annual influenza. Sneezing is not a common symptom of COVID-19 but stuffy nose, runny nose, scratchy or sore throat, headache, cough, new loss of taste or smell, fever or feeling feverish, fatigue, and muscle aches are all symptoms of COVID-19. Testing is free and widely available so there is no harm in getting tested. If you test positive then you will know for sure and will be able to care for yourself better. If you experience difficulty with breathing, shortness of breath, or your chest feels heavy, please call your health care provider or 911.
Yes. Although it is not known how long the virus can survive on clothes (towels, sheets, etc.), it is recommended to regularly change and wash your clothes after visiting any public places and or workplaces. Leave your shoes at the door. Wash your hands after removing your masks and frequently wash reusable masks.
(1) did not result in a COVID-19 test
(2) was outside of your insurance plan’s network
(3) involved other issues/concerns in addition to COVID-19
(4) was coded wrong by the provider
If you feel that you’ve been billed incorrectly, you should contact your healthcare providers billing department and/or the Wisconsin Office of the Commission of Insurance at 1-800-236-8517.
Always keep in mind your own health and safety when caring for others with COVID-19. It is important to provide basic care, such as monitoring symptoms, helping the individual follow their doctor’s instructions for care and medicine, providing over the counter medicine (if needed) to help reduce fever, making sure the individual is drinking plenty of liquids and getting ample rest, helping with groceries and food, and taking care of their pets. If the individual is within your household, be sure to continuously sanitize the home and keep the sick individual isolated to a separate bedroom and bathroom if possible to avoid spreading the virus. Lastly, be sure to keep their doctor’s phone number on hand in case the individual’s symptoms worsen. If they begin to experience trouble breathing, persistent pain or pressure in the chest, inability to wake or stay awake, or any other medical emergency, call 911 immediately.
It’s also important to remember that anytime you are in close contact with someone with COVID-19, you are at risk for getting the virus. Please quarantine at your home for 14 days, monitor your symptoms, and seek COVID-19 testing.
In this case, even though you are cleared by your physician, your employer is entitled to outline their organization's COVID-19 precautions.
Although reinfection is rare, it is possible. Additionally, it is possible to spread the virus after COVID-19 symptoms have disappeared. It is extremely important to isolate for 10 full days after symptoms appear before coming in contact with others, even if symptoms go away within this period.
Many factors play into the contraction of COVID-19 including timing, duration, atmosphere, and closeness. There is a possibility the individual had not yet contracted COVID-19 when you saw them or they were not yet contagious. Additionally, the details of your interaction play a part. For example if you physically distanced, wore a mask, or spent little time together there is less risk involved.
Yes. After careful research and review, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) found the approved COVID-19 vaccines to be safe and effective as determined by data from the manufacturers and findings from large clinical trials. As of now, none of the vaccine trials have reported any serious safety concerns.
Although the COVID-19 vaccines were developed faster than other approved vaccines in the past, absolutely no safety measures were skipped. The COVID-19 vaccine was able to be developed so quickly due to several reasons:
• researchers were able to use previous research to speed the process, including mRNA technology data,
• global collaboration resulted in simultaneous testing and sharing of data, and
• immense and unprecedented financial support.
Although each COVID-19 vaccine available is equally as effective and safe as the others, there are some differences in the vaccines’ ingredients, storage requirements, and dosage micrograms amounts. Additionally, although each vaccine requires two shots (a priming shot and a booster shot), the intervals between each shot varies slightly among vaccines. The interval between Moderna doses is 28 days and the interval between Pfizer doses is 21 days.
Check out the FDA's resources on Emergency Use Authorization here.
The interval between Moderna doses is 28 days and the interval between Pfizer doses is 21 days. Side effects are seen more frequently after the second dose of the COVID-19 vaccine, but can occur after the first dose. It is completely normal and expected to have side effects after receiving any vaccination. COVID-19 vaccine side effects may include: soreness or slight swelling on the arm that received the vaccine, fever, chills, tiredness, and/or headache. Applying a cool cloth to your arm, drinking plenty of liquids, and resting may reduce the severity of your symptoms. If your symptoms are worrying you or do not go away after a few days, call your doctor.
These side effects are completely normal and are a sign that the immune system is kicking into gear. These side effects do not signal that the vaccine is unsafe.
Check out the Vaccine Aversion Events Reporting System website to learn adverse reaction to vaccines and how to report them here.
The COVID-19 vaccination will help protect you from getting COVID-19. Similar to receiving any vaccine, you may have some side effects, which are normal signs that your body is working with the vaccine and building protection. These side effects may affect your ability to do daily activities, but they should go away in a few days. Side effects may include: soreness or slight swelling on the arm that received the vaccine, fever, chills, tiredness, and/or headache. Applying a cool cloth to your arm, drinking plenty of liquids, and resting may reduce the severity of your symptoms. If your symptoms are worrying you or do not go away after a few days, call your doctor.
Remember: These side effects are completely normal and are a sign that the immune system is kicking into gear. These side effects do not signal that the vaccine is unsafe.
The distribution of the COVID-19 vaccines are subject to decisions made by each state’s government. As of now, the CDC recommends the following vaccine prioritization based on the goals of mitigating the effects and deaths of COVID-19:
- Healthcare Personnel
- Long-term Care Facility Residents
- Frontline essential workers
- Ages 75+
- Ages 65-74
- Ages 16-64 with underlying medical conditions
- Other essential workers
Yes, the vaccine itself is free. Similar to COVID-19 tests, the COVID-19 vaccine should be free regardless of which vaccine you receive or your insurance status. However, some vaccination providers may charge an administration fee for giving the shot to someone. Providers can get this fee reimbursed by the patient’s public or private insurance company or, for uninsured patients, by the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Provider Relief Fund.