What is the difference between isolation and quarantine?

Isolation vs Quarantine

We hear the words quarantine and isolation all the time since the pandemic started. They are both measures to reduce the risk of contagious diseases such as COVID-19, but what exactly is the difference between them?


This measure separates people who have tested positive for or are suspected of having COVID-19 from people who don’t have the virus. If you are required to isolate, you need to self isolate at home, or in a hospital if you need medical care.

You must isolate if:

  • You tested positive for COVID-19
  • You have symptoms and health authorities suspect you have COVID-19


The quarantine measure is required for people who aren’t showing symptoms but may have been in contact with someone with COVID-19. The quarantine period lasts 14 days from when you have been in contact with a confirmed case. 

Quarantine is also required if you:

  • Have returned to Australia from overseas
  • Are entering a state that requires you to quarantine
  • Are entering certain remote areas of Australia

If you develop symptoms during this time, you will need to get tested for COVID-19. You must complete the full 14 days of quarantine even if you have tested negative.

For more information click here 

Leave a comment