Your infectious period
The COVID-19 infectious period can vary, but most people are considered infectious from 48 hours before their symptoms start and can be infectious for up to 10 days.
What you need to know
COVID-19 can spread quickly and is more contagious than the flu. The COVID-19 virus is passed on by coughing, or by contact with hands, surfaces or objects that are contaminated with the virus.
If you have COVID-19, you should stay at home until your acute symptoms have gone.
Avoid high-risk places, such as hospitals and aged-care and disability-care centres, until at least 7 days since you tested positive and until you are well.
While you have symptoms, and for up to 10 days since symptoms began, keep your distance from others, including people at high risk of severe disease. Wear a face mask when you leave your home, wash your hands, and cover your mouth with your elbow if you cough.
Got other COVID questions? Get COVID clarity
Use the COVID-19 Symptom and Antiviral Eligibility Checker to find out if you need to seek medical help.
Call the National Coronavirus Helpline on 1800 020 080 at any time if you need advice.