10 tips for enjoying a safe summer

Quarantine and self-isolation

Quarantine means preventive isolation in order to limit the possible spread of the coronavirus. Isolation means that you stay at home if you are ill or have tested positive for the coronavirus.

Quarantine

You have to quarantine:

  • as soon as you feel sick, but have not yet taken a positive test
  • when you had a high-risk contact with a person who has COVID-19 (you were together for more than 15 minutes at a distance of less than 1.5 metres and without both of you wearing a face mask). Are you fully vaccinated? Get tested on day 1 after the high-risk contact. Stay in quarantine until you know your test result. If your result is negative, you can stop the quarantine.
  • if you were abroad for more than 48 hours or will be staying in Belgium for more than 48 hours. Read here about when you have to go into quarantine after arriving in Belgium. Quarantine and testing are mandatory. Those who do not abide by the rules risk a fine of EUR 250.

Procedure

  • Stay at home.
  • Get tested:
  • Your quarantine is lifted upon receipt of negative results from the last test in the testing protocol applicable to your situation (see previous point). When your quarantine is lifted, remain particularly careful for the next 7 days.
  • If your test is positive, you must be placed in isolation.
  • If you feel ill during this quarantine procedure, contact your GP.

Attention: If you do not have a result from your last test (either because of a malfunction in the procedure or because you did not perform the test), your quarantine will end after 10 days. You will still need to be particularly careful for at least the next 4 days.

What should you do?

  • Always wear a face mask
  • You may only go to a pharmacy, doctor or supermarket.
  • Don’t let other people in your house
  • You may not visit others
  • You may sit in your garden or on your terrace
  • You measure your temperature twice a day
  • Open your windows
  • Clean every day what you touch a lot (e.g. door handles, taps, light switches, etc.).
  • Use other things than the people living in your house (e.g. different plates, towels, sheets, etc.)
  • Use a different toilet than the people who live in your house, if possible
  • Use a different bathroom than people living in your house, if possible

Can you work?

If you can work from home, you have to work from home. You don’t go to the office. If you cannot work from home, you will receive a quarantine certificate.

If you are unable to telework, you can claim temporary unemployment benefits. Self-employed people who are unable to work due to quarantine may invoke a bridging right.

Please note: did you test positive but you are a caregiver and your presence at work is necessary? Then you may be able to go back to work regardless of the result of your test. This is only possible provided a risk analysis takes place and you do not come into contact with (coronavirus) patients.

How can I obtain a quarantine certificate?

A quarantine certificate is sent to the email address you provided and/or to your e-box, accessible via myebox.be If you haven’t received a quarantine certificate via one of these two channels but you have received a text message with a quarantine code, you can obtain the certificate here “Quarantine certificate request”. Please specify:

  • your national register number
  • the 16-figure code received by text message (the quarantine code)
  • your mobile phone number
  • your e-mail address

Your GP can also provide you with a quarantine certificate if you are unable to receive a text message.

Self-isolation

You have to be in self-isolation when you test positive for the coronavirus. The isolation takes at least 10 days.

Procedure

  • Stay at home.
  • Only leave your house after 10 days
    • If you have not had a fever for at least 3 days
    • If you no longer have respiratory problems (shortness of breath, problems with breathing).

What should you do?

  • Do not go outside
  • You may sit in your garden or on your terrace
  • Don’t let other people in your house
  • You may not visit
  • Open your windows
  • Clean every day what you touch a lot (e.g. door handles, taps, light switches, etc.).
  • Stay away from the people who live in your house.
  • Use other things than the people who live in your house (e.g. different plates, towels, sheets, etc.)
  • Use a different toilet than the people who live in your house, if possible
  • Use a different bathroom than people living in your house, if possible
  • Use a different bedroom than the people living in your house, if possible.

If you do not follow the rules for quarantine or isolation, you may be punished or fined.

More information about testing and quarantine can be found on the websites of the competent authorities: