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Department of Health Services

Public Health Disease Control

COVID-19 Health Advisory – May 19, 2020

Updated Blanket Isolation/Quarantine Orders for COVID-19 Patients

Published: May 20, 2020


  • The Health Officer has recently updated the blanket isolation order and instructions to increase the isolation period to 10 days (up from 7 days) to be consistent with new CDC guidance on isolation ( Patients with symptoms can leave their place of isolation after 10 days and 3 days fever or cough free; patients who test positive, but never develop any symptoms of COVID-19, can leave their place of isolation after 10 days from the date the test sample was collected.
  • The Health Officer has also clarified the definitions of who can be placed under an isolation order.  There are two categories: 1) those who are diagnosed based on a positive test; and 2) those who are likely to have COVID-19 based on symptoms.  The Health Officer requires that a determination be made on the second category by a clinician in consultation with County Disease Control Unit so that resources to follow and contact trace Persons Under Investigation are not spent on persons unlikely to have COVID-19.
  • For person isolated due to a positive test, the County will take care of serving the Isolation Order on the individual, unless the health care provider is asked to assist with that process.  The service document no longer requires documenting symptoms. Documentation of Service of the Health Officer Order No. C19-12-I.
  • The Health Officer also requests that health care providers advise their patients of the availability to isolate at the County’s Alternate Care Site located at Sonoma State University.  This should be encouraged for individuals who live in a large household where isolating may be difficult or any other reason why a person’s residence may not be a safe place to isolate.  If a patient wishes to isolate at the Sonoma State Alternative Care Site, the patient or the patient’s clinician may call (707) 791-0059.
  • The orders also expand the definition of close contacts for purposes of quarantine.  Close contacts now includes any person within six feet of the infected person for 15 minutes or longer.  Since more people are or will be returning to work, this may include an encounter with a work colleague.

Actions Requested of Clinicians

  1. Prioritize COVID-19 testing in persons meeting updated CDC and California Department of Public Health (CDPH) criteria regardless of which laboratory is performing testing. See and
  2. For treating providers who have determined based on symptoms that a patient is likely to have COVID-19 but has not yet been tested or is test-pending, please contact Disease Control for a consultation on whether the patient should be served with the Isolation Order.  A printable version of the updated Isolation Order and instructions can be found here:

    (In English)

    (In Spanish)

  3. If placed under the Isolation Order C19-12-I, patients must tell their close contacts, including household members, intimate partners and in-home caregivers, that they are subject to the Health Officer Order No. C19-12-Q. The Quarantine Order can be found posted here:

    (In English):

    (In Spanish):

    Effect of Quarantine Order on healthcare personnel and first responders:

    Healthcare personnel and first responders who are close contacts of a person with COVID-19 are not subject the Health Officer Order No. C19-12-Q if they meet the following criteria:

    • The worker informs their employer about the worker’s close contact to a lab-confirmed Case; AND
    • The worker is asymptomatic, and the worker’s employer determines, based on staffing needs, that the worker needs to report to work; AND
    • The worker returns to work with appropriate protective gear.