COVID-19 Self-Isolation

You must self-isolate for 14 days following all out of province travel (on or after March 21, 2020).
  • If you have returned before March 8, there is no need to self-isolate.
  • If you have returned from domestic travel (outside of Prince Edward Island) on or after March 21st, you must self isolate for 14 days
  • If you have returned from international travel on or after March 8, you must self-isolate for 14 days.
  • In situations where only one member of the household needs to self-isolate, it is important that other members of the household take the following precautions:
    • maintain appropriate social distancing at all times;
    • ensure enhanced cleaning of all shared spaces following use;
    • and/or designate a separate bathroom and bedroom for the traveler.
  • If all members of the household cannot ensure that the above requirements can be met, then all members are to follow self-isolating guidelines for the 14 day period.

Self-isolation can help prevent the spread of infection, such as COVID-19. When you are exposed to an illness, there is a time between the exposure and when you start to feel sick. This is known as the incubation period. There is a very small chance that you can spread the germs during this time, in the few days before a sickness starts. More importantly, staying home means that if you do start to feel sick, you won’t run the risk of this happening while you are in a public place. Self-isolation is a cautious action used to lower the chance that the virus could spread to others.

What does self-isolation mean?

Self-isolation means limiting contact with others. This means all situations where you may come in contact with others, such as social gatherings, work, school, child care, athletic events, university, faith-based gatherings, healthcare facilities, grocery stores, restaurants, shopping malls, and all public gatherings.

  • STAY on your own property while you are in self-isolation.
  • If you live in an apartment building, you must stay on the building's property and practice social distancing while in corridors, stairwells, elevators, other shared spaces and outdoors.
  • Do not leave home unless absolutely necessary, such as to seek medical care.
  • Do not go to school, work, other public areas or use public transportation (e.g., buses, taxis).
  • Arrange to have groceries and supplies dropped off at your door to minimize contact.
  • Stay in a separate room and use a separate bathroom from others in your home, if possible.
  • If you have to be in contact with others, keep at least 2 metres between yourself and the other person. Keep interactions brief and wear a mask.
  • Avoid contact with individuals with chronic conditions, compromised immune systems and older adults. 
  • Avoid contact with pets if you live with other people that may also be touching the pet.

How does the following scenario impact members of my household?

I have developed symptoms of COVID-19 and am being tested. I have not had recent travel or contact with a confirmed case on PEI.

When any member of a household develops symptoms consistent with COVID-19, all members of the household must begin self-isolation and monitor for symptoms until the test results return.


  •     Cough  (new or exacerbated chronic)
  •     Fever/Chills
  •     Sore Throat
  •     Marked Fatigue
  •     Body Aches
  •     Runny Nose

What else can I do to stop the spread of infection?

Keep your hands clean

  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, and dry with disposable paper towels or dry reusable towel, replacing it when it becomes wet.
  • You can also remove dirt with a wet wipe and then use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Cough or sneeze into the bend of your arm or into a tissue.

Cover your coughs and sneezes

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or you can cough or sneeze into your sleeve.
  • Throw used tissues in the garbage, and immediately wash your hands with either soap and water for at least 20 seconds making sure you dry them thoroughly or use alcohol based hand sanitizer.

Avoid contaminating common items and surfaces

  • At least once daily, clean and disinfect surfaces that you touch often, like toilets, bedside tables, doorknobs, phones and television remotes.
  • Do not share personal items with others, such as toothbrushes, towels, bed linen, utensils or electronic devices.
  • Use regular household disinfectants or diluted bleach (1 part bleach and 9 parts water) to disinfect. 
  • Place contaminated items that cannot be cleaned in a lined container, secure the contents and dispose of them with other household waste.
  • Put the lid of the toilet down before flushing.

Care for yourself

  • Monitor your symptoms and if you become ill with cough, fever, difficulty breathing, or other respiratory symptoms call 811 for assessment for testing.
  • If you have been in contact with 811 but later your symptoms worsen call 811 again for further screening. If your symptoms become serious and you need medical attention call 911. 
  • Get some rest, eat a balanced diet and stay in touch with others through communication devices.
Once your self-isolation period is complete, you must begin to practice social distancing.

Being Prepared

There is an increased risk of more severe outcomes for Canadians:

  • aged 65 and over
  • with compromised immune systems
  • with underlying medical conditions

These are the most important ways that you can protect yourself and your family from respiratory illness, including COVID-19.

  • Make a plan
  • Fill your prescriptions
  • Stock up on essentials but avoid panic buying
  • How to care for those who are ill
  • Get reliable information
  • Communicate with family, friends and neighbours
  • Check credible sources for information like

If you have general health-related questions about COVID-19 call 1-800-958-6400.

It is recommeded that anyone with developing symptoms of COVID-19 in PEI, including a cough, fever or difficulty breathing, call 811 for directions.

Self Isolation Information Sheet Thumbnail
COVID-19 Self-Isolation Information Sheet [PDF]

Thumbnail for Self-Isolation vs Social Distancing Information Sheet COVID-19
Self-Isolation vs Social Distancing Information Sheet

Published date: 
April 4, 2020
Health and Wellness

General Inquiries

Department of Health and Wellness
4th Floor North, Shaw Building
105 Rochford Street
Charlottetown, PE   C1A 7N8

Phone: 902-368-6414
Fax: 902-368-4121