Dubai's Covid-19 close contact rules: all you need to know about quarantine and PCR tests

With a number of schools closing year groups or sending all pupils home, it's important to know the process

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Dubai has strict rules in place to manage close contacts of Covid-19 patients and prevent the spread of the virus.

A close contact is someone who comes within a metre, or less, of a person testing positive for a period of 15 minutes or longer.

It also applies to anyone in direct contact with a positive case, through acts such as a handshake or a hug, two days before they displayed symptoms, two days before a positive PCR test or during 10 days of illness.

For example, if you meet a friend for coffee on February 1 who then tests positive on February 3, you would need to quarantine until February 7.

With a number of schools in Dubai now closing year groups or even sending all pupils home, it is important to know the process.

The rules for close contacts

  1. If you come into contact with a positive case, you must quarantine in a separate room for seven days. Dubai Health Authority may not call you to confirm you are doing this but it is your responsibility to follow the rules.
  2. If you have yet to show any symptoms of Covid-19 then you do not need to take a PCR test.
  3. If you do start to show symptoms while in quarantine, such as a cough or fever, it is important that you book a PCR test. If it comes back positive you need to isolate for ten days. If it comes back negative you must still finish the seven-day isolation period for anyone who has come into close contact with a positive case.
  4. Even if you were wearing a face mask and keeping social distance at the time you came into contact with the positive case, you are still considered a close contact.
  5. Home quarantine must take place at your home and is mandatory to stop the spread of Covid-19.
  6. If you cannot quarantine at home, for example due to a vulnerable member of the household, it is possible to go to a hotel or a dedicated government facility, but you will need to foot the bill.
  7. If you are going to quarantine but feel fine, you will need access to a separate room from the rest of the household, your own bathroom, a first aid kit with a thermometer, and a way of communicating with someone else in the house without needing to open the door.
  8. If you come across a positive case of Covid-19 at school or work, your employer or teacher should tell you to quarantine for seven days.

Once you have finished the seven-day quarantine, a letter confirming this can be obtained by calling the DHA toll-free number 800342.

On Monday, the UAE reported 2,562 new coronavirus cases and 860 recoveries.

Officials have said no one died in the past 24 hours from complications.

The country has recorded 788,187 cases, 753,893 recoveries and 2,174 deaths since the first Covid-19 case was detected in the Emirates on January 29, 2020.

Updated: January 11, 2022, 10:11 AM