Contact and transmission

The COVID-19 infection can be spread from one person to another by tiny particles called aerosols and by respiratory droplets expelled through the nose or mouth when an infected person coughs or sneezes. In order to avoid inhaling these particles, it is important to keep a distance of more than 2 metres from an infected person and apply the basic rules of hygiene.

The droplets can also persist for a certain amount of time on objects and surfaces, and the COVID-19 disease can also be contracted by touching these objects or surfaces and then touching the eyes, nose or mouth.

Until there is effective treatment or a vaccine, we are going to have to learn to live with the virus.

That's why you must continue to limit your outings and contacts, apply the protective measures and wear a mask whenever it is not possible to keep a distance of 2 metres from people who do not live with you in the same house.

To avoid another period of confinement, we are appealing to everyone to act responsibly and with discipline in applying the protective measures and to thereby show solidarity particularly towards those who are vulnerable.

Good habits

Maintain a 2 metre distance.

Cough and sneeze into your elbow crease, or into a paper handkerchief that you then throw away in a lidded bin.

Wear your mask.


What should I do if I have been in contact with someone who has tested positive?

A distinction is made between protected contacts and close, direct contacts. 

In the context of the COVID-19 pandemic, as a general rule, close and direct contact occurs when two people, one of which has tested positive for COVID-19, have had face-to-face contact and in the absence of effective protective measures (without a mask, without respecting the rules of minimum distance, touching, shaking hands, kissing, etc.) for at least 15 minutes. 

A fortiori, a protected contact is a contact between two persons, including a positive COVID-19, during which the rules of protection have been observed and which lasts no longer than 15 minutes. 

While all contacts with an infected person are potentially risky, some are more risky than others. It all depends on how long and how close the contact is. Different contacts give rise to different measures.

If you have had close and direct contact with a COVID-19 positive person, quarantine will be necessary. 

From the 6th day, after receiving a prescription, please submit to a COVID-19 test. If the test is negative, the quarantine is automatically terminated. However, should symptoms appear even after a negative test, you must immediately submit to a new test and go into isolation without delay. 

For 7 days after quarantine, consider self-monitoring and wear a mask when in contact with other people. 

For protected contacts, a 14-day self-monitoring period is sufficient.

Self-isolation or isolation apply to people who have a confirmed COVID-19 infection.​.

Isolation is prescribed by the physician for a minimum of 10 days after the onset of symptoms.

It is a question of breaking the transmission chain.

How does the contact tracing of a person who has tested positive work?

The person who tested positive is asked to provide the Health Inspectorate with the contact details of all close contacts they have had in the days prior to the test or before the onset of symptoms.

Afterwards, the identified people are informed that they have been in contact with a sick person (the identity of the sick person is only revealed if he or she agrees). The Health Inspectorate officers then inquire about the state of health of the contact and inform him/her about the necessary measures and precautions, including protective measures. Based on the information obtained it is decided whether and when a COVID-19 test should be carried out.

It is therefore essential that you remember who you have been in contact with over the last few days.

When can an infected person transmit the virus?

Whether or not they have symptoms, infected people can be contagious and transmit the virus to others.

It usually takes 2 days before symptoms appear. An infected person is contagious from the very beginning of the disease. At that time, they often do not yet know themselves that they have been infected with the virus.

People who develop a severe form of the disease may be contagious for a longer period of time.

Last update