Updated guidance for children and young people aged 18 years and under who have a positive Covid-19 test result

If a child or young person has Covid-19 symptoms (see below) or a positive Covid-19 test result they should try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 3 days after the day they took the test or began to feel unwell, if they can. For example if the test was taken on Sunday, then assuming the child or young person feels well and does not have a high temperature, they can return to school on Thursday.

If after 3 days, they feel well and do not have a high temperature, the risk of passing the infection on to others is much lower. This is because children and young people tend to be infectious to other people for less time than adults.

Children and young people who usually go to school, college or childcare, and who live with someone who has a positive Covid-19 test result should continue to attend as normal.

Symptoms of Covid-19 can include:

  • A high temperature or shivering (chills) – a high temperature means you feel hot to touch on your chest or back (you do not need to measure your temperature)
  • A new, continuous cough – this means coughing a lot for more than an hour, or 3 or more coughing episodes in 24 hours
  • A loss or change to your sense of smell or taste
  • Shortness of breath
  • Feeling tired or exhausted
  • An aching body
  • A headache
  • A sore throat
  • A blocked or runny nose
  • Loss of appetite
  • Diarrhoea
  • Feeling sick or being sick