COVID-19, a disease caused by the corona virus, is highly contagious. It is transmitted from person to person. Therefore, it is important to identify people who have had contact with people in whom the corona virus has been detected in the laboratory. If necessary, authorities can then order domestic quarantines for people who have had contact with infected individuals.
Domestic quarantine is necessary to slow down further spread of the Corona virus as much as possible, so that our health system is not completely overloaded and has time to adapt.
Isolation of ill persons and quarantine of contact persons are protective measures. However, they can be perceived as very burdensome, because they largely exclude you from social life as a person who is ill, possibly ill, or as a contact person.
For all consumer information on Corona, visit this overview page on the topic.
Who must be in isolation or quarantine?
The health authorities are responsible for ordering quarantine measures. The legal basis for this is the Infection Protection Act.
Isolation after confirmed infection
Isolation is a government-ordered measure for people who have been confirmed to have SARS-CoV-2 infection by a PCR test.
Quarantine in case of suspicion
You must be quarantined if you are suspected of being infected with the SARS-CoV-2 corona virus. For example, because you entered from a high-risk area or had close contact with a person who is proven to be infected.
You will be classified as a close contact person at increased risk of infection if any of the following situations exist:
- You had longer than ten minutes contact with less than 1.50 meters distance to a probably infectious person, Without having been adequately protected. That is, without you and the other person consistently and properly wearing mouth-to-nose protection or an FFP2 mask.
- You had a conversation with a likely infected person less than 1.50 meters away and without adequate protection, regardless of the duration of the conversation. Or you had Direct contact z.B. with saliva of a suspected infected.
- you have been at the same time and longer than ten minutes with a probably infected person in a room with high concentration of infectious aerosols. And this is regardless of the distance, even if you wore a mouth-nose protection or FFP2 mask.
- They have symptoms of disease, did a rapid test and then a PCR test. Quarantine is mandatory until the result of the PCR test is available.
- Your PCR test is positive.
- You live with people whose PCR test positive.
How high your risk of infection was, whether you have to be quarantined and when this is lifted, is decided by the responsible public health department.
Who orders quarantine or isolation and how long to stay in it?
Usually the health department in your community orders the measure.
So far, a strict quarantine of 14 days applies to infected persons and persons in contact with a person infected with the Omikron virus variant. You cannot terminate you prematurely by a negative test.
The federal government and the states have on 7. January 2022 agreed to simplify the rules for isolation (of sick people) and quarantine (for contact people).
- Unlike in the past, in the future Contact persons who have a complete vaccination protection through the booster vaccination are exempt from quarantine Its. This also applies to those who have just been vaccinated and those who have recovered.
- For everyone else: The isolation or quarantine ends after ten days, even without testing. If you want to end quarantine or isolation early, you can do so after only seven days with a negative PCR or rapid test with detection.
- Work in a hospital, nursing home or institution for integration assistance, you can end the isolation after seven days following an infection. However, they must at least 48 hours symptom-free be and one negative PCR test present.
- Pupils:inside as well as children in child care can use the quarantine as a contact already after five days end by a PCR or antigen rapid test.
Good to know: Exceptions to quarantine are possible if you have a high level of protection, such as being tested daily or if you are required to wear a mask. This is decided by the public health department.
Some states already have the new quarantine rules in place, others are expected to follow shortly. In this graphic you see the regulations at a glance.
A Isolation of diseased persons is at the earliest ten days after the onset of the disease lifted if there have been no signs of illness for at least 48 hours. If the illness was severe, you must also have conclusive PCR test results.
In addition: quarantine obligation when entering or returning from abroad
Since 23. December 2021, there is a general obligation to provide proof of vaccination for all entrants aged 6 years and older, regardless of whether you enter by air, sea or land. When entering Germany, you must present proof of testing, vaccination or convalescence.
This applies when entering or returning from a high-risk area
You are unvaccinated and not fully immunized?
Then you have to be in quarantine for 10 days upon entry. You can shorten the quarantine to five days by a negative corona test (PCR test or POC rapid test). You may take the test at the earliest on the 5. Day after entry make
You are fully vaccinated or recovered?
Then you can take the 10-day domestic quarantine Exit early if you submit proof of vaccination or convalescence via the digital entry portal. You can end the quarantine with the date of transmission.
Good to know: If you have already transmitted the evidence before entering the country, quarantine is not required.
Read this article to find out what you need to know when returning from high-risk areas.
Before crossing the border, it is best to inquire about the applicable rules on your state’s website. Current case numbers, affected countries and information on risk areas can be found at the Robert Koch Institute.
What I am not allowed to do when I am in quarantine?
- you are not allowed to leave your home without the permission of the health department.
- Do not receive visitors from people who do not belong to your own household.
- You must not have close contact with people you live with.
Violate the quarantine, z.B. by leaving the apartment, you can be punished by fine or, in serious cases, imprisonment.
How to behave in quarantine?
- If you live with other people, stay in different rooms to avoid infection. Also, do not sleep in the same room.
- Make sure to wash your hands regularly.
- Observe the cough and sneeze etiquette.
- Ventilate living rooms and bedrooms well.
- Do not share household items such as dishes, linens, and towels with each other.
- If possible, use your own bathroom.
- Do not share hygiene items with each other. Wash clothes regularly and thoroughly.
- Regularly and thoroughly clean and, if possible, disinfect surfaces such as doorknobs, tables, and storage areas.
- Take meals separately.
- If you have a dog, ask friends or neighbors to walk him during the period of quarantine.
- Ask others who are not quarantined to go shopping for you (see also below).
If persons live in your household who belong to risk groups due to their age or due to previous illnesses, try to accommodate them elsewhere for the duration of the quarantine, unless a quarantine is also ordered for them.
What if I need medical help in domestic quarantine?
Contact your public health department immediately if you feel ill or have symptoms such as cough, cold, fever or shortness of breath. In addition, contact your family doctor as soon as possible by telephone or call the medical on-call service with the nationwide telephone number 116 117.
It is important to keep a close eye on your health:
- Take your body temperature twice a day.
- Keep a diary in which you record symptoms and body temperature.
Contact your primary care physician or specialist, If you need urgent medication or medical attention; and say that you are under quarantine. If you have medical problems that may lead to non-compliance with quarantine, inform your health department.
You are only allowed to leave your home for a test or necessary doctor’s appointments after consulting with the health department. You must comply with the rules of conduct, such as keeping your distance and wearing an everyday mask.
In case of acute life-threatening illness, poisoning or serious injury, dial 112 and tell them you are quarantined!
Why do I have to comply with the home quarantine even if I get a negative test result?
A smear is always just a snapshot. The test only means that you were not ill at the time of the test or that you were only at the very beginning of the infection, so that detection was not yet possible.
What do my housemates need to be aware of?
People who live with you in a domestic community need to consider the following:
- Your roommates should also reduce their contact with other people.
- If your roommates experience symptoms of illness, especially respiratory problems or fever, they should call their primary care physician and ask for an Referral to the one-stop shop for suspected corona cases ask.
How do I provide myself with food?
Family, friends and neighbors can buy food and should leave it outside the door. In many regions there are neighborhood initiatives or other volunteer helpers. Also ask at church organizations and welfare associations or in your municipality. There are often the local support structures known.
If no one can help you, tell the health department.
How to deal with the stressful situation?
Quarantine can be very stressful. Life is limited to one’s own four walls, social contacts are frozen, conflicts with roommates may arise due to the hardly available alternative options. Fears and worries about contagion weigh down.
It is important to take care of your own mental health during quarantine.
- Create fixed daily structures for yourself, regardless of whether you work in a home office or not.
- Stay z.B. Be in contact with relatives, friends or work colleagues via telephone or social media.
- If you suddenly have an unusual amount of time, you can consider what hobbies are currently in question, z.B. Read, cook, play games or the like.
- Stay physically active: you can do exercises in your home, too. There are many instructions on the Internet.
- Try meditation or relaxation exercises if you feel tense. There are also many instructions for this on the Internet.
- Be critical. A lot of misinformation is spread, especially in the social media. Check with trusted sources, z.B. on the website of the Robert Koch Institute, the Federal Ministry of Health or the health offices.
- Shape or limit your media consumption, especially if you notice that it is stressing you out.
- You are allowed to be in your own private garden, balcony or terrace during the quarantine – but not to meet other people.
- Being involuntarily quarantined at home can be a very emotionally stressful situation. If you feel down, talk to people close to you. A contact point can be the telephone counselling service. You can reach them at 0800-111 0 111, 0800-111 0 222 or 116 123. You can find further important numbers in our Corona-FAQ.
- Try to maintain a positive attitude and be guided by values that sustain you.
Am I entitled to continued payment of wages if I am in quarantine??
- Confirmed infection with the Corona virus
In case of confirmed infection with the Corona virus accompanied by symptoms, the attending physician will issue you a certificate of incapacity for work. That can be done by phone at the moment. (See also "What about sick leave by telephone?" under the heading "Health and care in our Corona FAQ).
If you are quarantined as a professional, you will not be able to go back to your place of work. Home office can be a solution here.
If you have no symptoms of illness, the family doctor may not issue an AU certificate. This also applies to people who have tested positive for the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus without symptoms.
However, as a vaccinated person, you are covered by the Infection Protection Act. While you’re at it, you also get six weeks’ pay from your employer. This applies from 1. November 2021 now not for people, which despite public recommendation Have not been vaccinated or For quarantine duty due to an avoidable trip into a corona risk area exists.
To receive compensation, submit the official notice of the quarantine order to the employer. The in turn may be able to seek reimbursement for sick pay through the appropriate authorities.
Important: Also Independent can against the responsible authority your loss of earnings during a quarantine according to the infection protection law claim.
You make the application for compensation at the responsible health office. You can also get information there on specific questions about making a claim.
- fill in the application form of the respective health department and compile the evidence of.
- Submit the application documents in full to the relevant health office.
Your application should be reviewed immediately, and any missing documentation will be requested. You will get a written notice about the approval or rejection.
The deadline for application is up to three months after the start of the ban on activities or segregation.
The police warns: front door fraud
Scammers at the front door use a new scam. You pose as a health department employee in protective clothing, sell alleged COVID-19 tests and try to gain access to homes.
Health department workers do not come unannounced and do not perform tests at the front door!