Publication - Advice and guidance

Coronavirus (COVID-19): looked after children and young people - family contact

Last updated: 15 Jan 2021 - see all updates
Published: 15 Dec 2020

Guidance for managers, social workers and social care providers arranging contact between looked after and accommodated children and young people and their families in both local authority premises, community settings and in some circumstances, a private dwelling.

Coronavirus (COVID-19): looked after children and young people - family contact
Positive tests for coronavirus

What to do in the event of a positive test

A person who tests positive for coronavirus will be connected with a NHS contact tracer in order to assist identification of those with whom they have been in close contact. Those who have been in close contact with someone who has tested positive will be asked to self-isolate at home for 10 days. Further information and guidance is available from Test and Protect.

If a person involved in family contact tests positive for coronavirus afterwards, the local authority should follow their local health protection protocol for contact tracing in complex settings. Further information is available from Health Protection Scotland.

If a professional who has been in close contact with a family member, child or carer during family contact subsequently tests positive or displays symptoms, then they should inform the lead professional immediately.

If a family member who has attended contact has informed the lead professional that they have tested positive, face to face contact should be immediately suspended and should only resume after the required period of self-isolation. In such circumstances, other methods of maintaining essential contact for the child must be considered.

If a child who has attended contact has tested positive, face to face contact should be immediately suspended and only resume after the required period of self-isolation. In such circumstances, other methods of maintaining essential contact for the child must be considered.

If a carer of a child, living in the same household, displays symptoms or has tested positive, the child must self-isolate. Further information about periods of self-isolation when another person in the household tests positive or displays symptoms is available from Coronavirus (Covid 19): Test and Protect.

If any participants in family contact are concerned that safe face to face contact cannot take place, then the lead professional should be informed and assess the risks taking any new information in to account. In discussion with the child, family and partners to the child’s plan, the lead professional should facilitate safe family contact. If face to face contact is not currently safely achievable, an interim plan should be formed in order to sustain relationship until such time as safe direct contact can be restored.


First published: 15 Dec 2020 Last updated: 15 Jan 2021 -