Note: If you are seeking industry specific guidance on LFT testing and isolation, visit here.
This section covers questions relating to isolation as a result of COVID-19 in the Cayman Islands. Click the links below to skip to the relevant questions or scroll down to read more:
- What does isolation mean?
- What is the difference between isolation and quarantine?
- Who should isolate?
- Does my entire family go into isolation with me?
- How will isolated patients be monitored?
- Will Public Health staff check on me and my family?
- I'm finding this difficult. What do I do?
- If I have flu-like symptoms and am tested for Covid-19, should I isolate at home?
What does isolation mean?
Isolation means you need to stay indoors and avoid contact with other people. The Department of Public Health will advise when it is safe for you to be released. There are no exceptions, including to shop for groceries and other necessities.
It is important to follow this advice for the whole period, even if you do not have any symptoms of COVID-19.
- Stay at home
- Ask friends, family members or delivery services to carry out errands for your such as getting groceries, medicines or other shopping
- Make sure you tell delivery drivers to leave items outside for collection
- Clean toilets and bathrooms regularly
- Think about a bathroom rotation if a separate bathroom is not available, with the isolated person using the facilities last, before thoroughly cleaning the bathroom themselves
- Use separate sheets and towels from anyone else in the household and launder at the hottest temperature possible for the material
- Wash crockery and utensils thoroughly with soap and water; dishwashers may be used to clean crockery and cutlery
- There is no evidence pets can be infected with coronavirus; however, it is good practice to wash your hands after contact
- Don't invite visitors to your home or allow visitors to enter
- Don't go to work, school or public areas
- Don't use public transport or taxis
- Don't share dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, bedding or other items with other people in your home
- As of Thursday, 15 July, 2021, you cannot remove or pass, or permit the removal or passing of, any item from quarantine or isolation.
What's The Difference Between Isolation and Quarantine?
Isolation and quarantine are both ways to protect the public from a contagious disease but they are slightly different. Here's how:
Isolation separates COVID-19 positive individuals as well as potentially infected people from the community, even if they don’t have symptoms. If there is a chance you have been exposed to COVID-19 and are not displaying any symptoms, you can take a Lateral Flow Test (LFT) to determine if you need to isolate. Learn more
Quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who may have been exposed to a communicable disease (in this case COVID-19) in a manner as designated by the Medical Officer of Health. These people may have been exposed to a disease and do not know it, or they may have the disease but do not show symptoms at all. In the Cayman Islands, you quarantine after travelling to the Cayman Islands if you are not vaccinated (see our travel information). Breaches of the Public Health Act may attract penalties of up to two years imprisonment and a $10,000 fine. You can report suspected breaches of quarantine here.
Who should isolate?
If there's a chance you could have COVID-19 and you are displaying symptoms, you should isolate and contact your local healthcare provider or the Flu Hotline to seek advice on the best next steps.
If you are not displaying symptoms but you had contact with someone who has tested positive for the virus, or if you have travelled from an affected area, you should isolate and take LFTs daily for 10 days. If your LFT results are positive at any time, you must isolate immediately and follow Public Health advice. Learn more.
If you test positive for COVID-19, you will have to remain in isolation as directed by the Department of Public Health. It is best to prepare for this scenario by ensuring you have at least two weeks’ supply of pain relievers such as Tylenol or Paracetamol (acetaminophen), soap or hand sanitisers, tissues, food and other items that will ensure your comfort while you are at home.
Does my entire family go into isolation with me?
If you are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 and have tested positive, and all other members of your household are vaccinated, each person, including children, should conduct daily Lateral Flow Testing for ten days. Daily testing must continue until all positive cases in the household are cleared by Public Health. If an individual receives a negative LFT result, that individual can attend school/work if daily test results continue to be negative. If an individual in your household receives a positive LFT result, that individual must:
- stay at home and
- contact Public Health immediately.
If there are members of your household are not vaccinated, and they are 18 years of age or older, they are required to isolate for 10 days.
You must tell Public Health about this and Public Health will advise the date of the PCR test they must take. Public Health will also confirm final approval for release.
Unvaccinated children under 18 years old residing in the household can continue to go to school if daily LFT result is negative. Daily testing must continue until all positive cases in the household are cleared by PH.
How will isolated patients be monitored?
The Public Health Department has extensive experience in monitoring people at home who have infectious diseases and supporting the people affected through the period of isolation.
Will Public Health staff check on me and my family?
As of 20 November, 2021, all quarantining travellers and their companions are subject to Travel Cayman welfare phone calls and physical checks.
I'm finding this difficult. What do I do?
For some people, isolation can be boring or frustrating. You may find your mood and feelings being affected and you may feel low, worried or have problems sleeping.
There are simple things you can do that may help, such as staying in touch with friends and relatives on the phone or by social media and you may find it helpful to talk to them if you want to.
Do know that it is okay to not be okay, but please try not to panic. Caring professionals are here for you. Call 1-800-534-6463 (MIND) to speak to our Mental Health Helpline from Monday to Friday, 9am to 5pm.
There is also a support line available for people in isolation, which can be reached by calling 946-3530. The Isolation Support Line is also available toll free by calling 1-800-534-3530, and by email to firstname.lastname@example.org
The Isolation Support Line’s operational hours are from 9a.m. to 4 p.m. from Monday to Friday, and from 9a.m. to 1p.m. on Saturday. Calls on Saturday and Sunday will be forwarded to the Hazard Management Cayman Islands (HMCI) Duty Officer.