Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)

Coronavirus (COVID-19) FAQs - Updated August 20, 2020

Hamilton County Health Department



Where can I access reputable information about Coronavirus (COVID-19) for Hamilton County, Tennessee?


1. Call the Hamilton County Health Department’s COVID-19 hotline at (423) 209-8383 for up-to-date information. The hotline is open Monday-Friday from 8AM- 4PM and Saturday from 10AM-3PM.

2. Visit the Connect With Us page to link to our social media accounts and Subscribe to our mailing list.



Where is the Hamilton County Health Department offering FREE COVID-19 Testing?


Click here to access the Health Department's COVID-19 testing calendar. 



How will I receive my COVID-19 test results?


Please visit our Results Page for detailed information HERE



Should I get retested after testing positive for COVID-19?

We strongly discourage getting retested within 3 months of the original positive COVID-19 test because many people will continue to test positive for weeks but will not be considered contagious. This is likely due to ‘viral debris’ or pieces of viral RNA remaining in the nasal cavity. This is impossible to predict and repeat positive test results do NOT mean further isolation is needed if your symptoms are gone. If your symptoms do return, however, you should be reevaluated by your physician or practitioner.


If the individual has already been in self-isolation for a minimum of ten days and their fever is gone (if they ever had one) and their other symptoms are gone or have improved, they are not considered to be contagious and this second positive test should be ignored.


Someone at work (my supervisor, coworker, one of my staff, etc.) was tested for COVID-19. Can the Health Department tell me their test result?


No. This information is private health information and cannot be shared with anyone other than the patient that was tested. It is up to the person who was tested to disclose this information.



Do businesses need to post signs/posters requiring the use of masks or face coverings?


Yes. According to Directive No. 1 of the Hamilton County Health Officer Effective July 10, 2020 - All businesses shall post signage in a place visible to those entering to remind customers of this requirement.


If businesses would like to print signs already created by the Health Department, please visit our print resource page HERE.

The following verbiage is approved by the Hamilton County Health Department:


Face coverings required in this public space.
Es obligatorio usar una cubierta facial en esta área.


Face coverings over your nose and mouth are required to enter this area.
Se requiere usar una cubierta facial sobre la nariz y la boca para entrar en esta área.


As directed by the Hamilton County Health Department, any person entering this commercial area shall wear a facial covering.
De acuerdo a la directiva del Departamento de Salud del Condado de Hamilton toda persona que entre en este centro comercial deberá llevar puesta una cubierta facial.


As directed by the Hamilton County Health Department, any person entering this outdoor space shall wear a facial covering if unable to remain 6 feet from others.
De acuerdo a la directiva del Departamento de Salud del Condado de Hamilton, cualquier persona que entre en este espacio al aire libre deberá usar una cubierta facial si no puede permanecer a 6 pies o 2 metros de distancia de los demás.


When does the Health Department notify the public of a public exposure event? (Example: a wedding, graduation, funeral, etc.)

If the Health Department cannot reach potential contacts via contact tracing, and the event or situation has the potential for significant community exposure, the Health Department may notify the public of a public exposure via press release and social media.


What should I do if someone in my household tested positive for COVID-19? 

If someone in your household tests positive for COVID-19, you are considered a household contact. Household contacts will often need to stay home for a minimum of 24 days, which means 14 days after the case has completed their (minimum) 10-day isolation period (whether the case is symptomatic or not). If a household contact develops symptoms of COVID-19 they become a case. They should begin isolation as a case and consider getting tested. It is imperative to follow this guidance closely as the virus can be incubating during this timeframe. Leaving quarantine too soon can result in the spread of COVID-19. For more information, please visit:


A person is considered to have died from COVID-19 if their death certificate lists COVID-19 disease or SARS-CoV-2 as a cause of death or a significant condition contributing to death.