Latest Guidance

All Chicago residents should practice physical distancing, wear a face covering and wash their hands often. Everyone should self-monitor for COVID-19 symptoms and stay home if they’re sick. For more information, see How to Protect Yourself.

Older adults and people with severe chronic conditions should take extra precautions because they are at higher risk of developing serious COVID-19 illness. For more information, see CDC guidance for people who are at higher risk.

Large or Extended Families - If your household includes people in these high-risk groups, then all family members should act as if they, themselves, are at higher risk. Follow CDPH's Guidance on How to Protect Yourself and the People You Live with from COVID-19.

Children - While children are not considered at high risk, they may have mild illness or not show symptoms, they can still spread the disease to others. It's important to follow CDC's recommendation for keeping children healthy while school's out.

Sick Individuals – Under Chicago’s March 18 Public Health Order, everyone who is sick with COVID-19 symptoms must stay home and self-isolate. For more information, see What to Do if You’re Sick.

Exposed Individuals – The safest option for individuals who feel healthy but recently had close contact with a person with COVID-19 is to home for 14 days after their last exposure. Check your temperature twice a day and watch for symptoms of COVID-19. If you do not have symptoms, an acceptable alternative is to quarantine for 10 days, or if you do not have symptoms AND receive a negative COVID-19 test result on day 5 or after, to quarantine for 7 days. You should verify which quarantine period is required by your workplace before returning to work. Follow CDPH guidance on steps to protect yourself and others.

Critical Infrastructure Workers – Critical infrastructure workers who have been exposed to COVID-19 can continue work following potential exposure to COVID-19, as long as they don’t develop any COVID-19 symptoms. See CDPH Guidance for Critical Infrastructure Workers.

Businesses and Employers need to consider how best to decrease the spread of COVID-19 and lower the impact in their workplace.  For more information, see Chicago’s industry-specific guidelines for safely operating within Phase III: Cautiously Reopen.

Employers should not require a sick employee to provide a negative COVID-19 test result or healthcare provider’s note to return to work. Employees with COVID-19 who have stayed home can stop home isolation and return to work when they have met the the following sets of criteria:

  • 10 days have passed since symptoms started (or since positive test if never had symptoms, 
  • No fever for 24 hours without taking fever-reducing medication, and
  • Symptoms are improving

We encourage you to use and share the following resources:

Congregate Living Facilities should implement universal masking policy and enhanced environmental cleaning. For more information, see CDPH Guidance for Congregate Living Facilities.

Homeless Shelters should aim to reduce the spread of COVID-19, minimize introductions of COVID-19 and mitigate the severity of COVID-19 in their facilities. For the most recent guidance, see CDPH's Updated COVID-19 Guidance for Homeless Shelters: Chicago's 'Second Wave'. For more information, see CDPH's Updated Guidance for Homeless Shelters as Chicago Reopens, the associated Frequently Asked Questions, and the COVID-19 symptom screening tool.


Childcare Programs –In order to protect the progress we’ve made in Chicago to reduce COVID-19 transmission, childcare providers should follow the CDPH Interim Guidance on Management of COVID-19 Cases in Childcare Settings.

PreK-12 schools must report all COVID-19 cases in students and staff to CDPH and follow CDPH Interim Guidance on Management of COVID-19 Cases in PreK-12 Schools.

Institutions of Higher Education should take measures to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission on campus. See CDPH Interim COVID-19 Guidance for Institutions of Higher Education.