Positive Tests, Quarantine, and Isolation

Process for Positive Tests and Close Contacts

If you are a member of the on-campus community who has tested positive for COVID-19 or is determined to be a close contact, students will be contacted by Wellness Services regarding next steps, including moving into isolation (positive test) or quarantine (close contact without a vaccination). Human Resources will contact Faculty and Staff.

Current health guidelines define a close contact as anyone who is within 6 feet of a positive case for at least 15 minutes in one day. While masks can help protect you, this is with or without a mask. The time can be continuous or split up over the course of a day, e.g. 5 minutes in the morning and 10 minutes in the evening. Typically, anyone sleeping under the same roof for at least one night is considered a close contact, though this can vary. For the purposes of contact tracing, the guideline for the infectious period starts two days before symptoms developed or the day of positive test.

Isolation/Quarantine Information

Quarantine and Isolation

Quarantine is if you have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, unless you have been fully vaccinated.

  1. Despite vaccination status, close contacts should be tested immediately after being identified. If negative when first tested, close contacts should be tested again in 5–7 days after their last exposure or, immediately if they develop symptoms. Wellness Services will notify students and provide instructions for persons identified as close contacts. Human Resources will notify faculty and staff.
  2. Close contacts who are fully vaccinated do NOT need to follow traditional quarantine guidelines, but should monitor closely for symptoms for 14 days after exposure. If symptoms develop, get tested and notify Wellness Services or Human Resources. Students will also wear a mask whenever around others for 14 days after exposure. This includes outdoors and in dorm if roommates with the exception of sleeping.
  3. Close contacts who are not fully vaccinated need to quarantine and be moved to quarantine room separate from others as soon as possible. Food and other needed supplies will be delivered to student’s room.

Isolation is used to separate people infected with SARS-CoV-2 from those who are not infected. People who are in isolation should separate until it’s safe for them to be around others. Students who live on campus will be moved to separate isolation room. For students who live off campus, separate from others, stay in a isolated room or area, and use a separate bathroom (if available). All students with positive test results, regardless of whether or not they show symptoms, will be required to isolate in a separate space reserved for isolation. Food and other supplies will be delivered to isolation rooms.

For students, faculty, and staff living off campus who visit campus:

Students, faculty and staff living off campus who visit campus in any capacity will isolate/quarantine at their off-campus residence. Wellness Services or Human Resources will notify you if you have tested positive through campus testing or if you have been identified as a close contact. If you are a close contact or have developed symptoms, do not come to campus for testing. Find more about options for off-campus testing here. Students can contact Wellness Services for medical support. Employees should contact their local healthcare provider.

Expectations for Isolation/Quarantine on campus

Students in isolation or quarantine through campus, will be provided with contacts across campus to help them adjust and ease disruption in routine. Students are also provided with resources on and off campus for after-hours needs.

The following regulations apply to students in the Isolation/Quarantine space; any member of the campus community should follow similar practices applicable to their living situation to limit exposure to others.

  • Stay in your room. Do not have guests over.
  • Do not attend any in-person classes or activities.
  • Meals and other supplies will be delivered to your door.
  • Keep surfaces clean.
  • Wash your hands often and practice good hygiene.
  • Remove trash from your room and leave outside your door for a custodian to pick up.
  • Postpone any travel. If travel is absolutely necessary, you must contact Wellness Services first for instructions.
  • Postpone all nonessential medical appointments unless virtual (for example, dental cleaning, eye exam, routine check-up) until you are out of isolation/quarantine. If you have an essential appointment during this time, please call your provider ahead of time.
  • Wear a mask if you must leave your room.

How to be cleared from isolation:

  • Students must be cleared by Wellness Services to leave isolation housing.
  • If you have no symptoms, you can be cleared 10 days after your positive test result.
  • If you have symptoms, you can be cleared after: 
    • At least 10 days from when symptoms started, AND
    • Your symptoms have improved, AND
    • You are afebrile (temperature less than 100.4) for at least 24 hours without using medication to reduce fever.

How to be cleared from quarantine:

Wellness Services must clear students.

There are 3 options for those who are unvaccinated to clear from quarantine:

  • 7 Day Quarantine – Quarantine can end after DAY 7 with a negative antigen (a.k.a. rapid) or PCR test result AND if no symptoms were reported during daily monitoring. Get tested no sooner than DAY 6 of your quarantine and remain in quarantine until a result comes back.
  • 10-Day Quarantine – Quarantine can end after DAY 10 without testing AND if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring.
  • 14-Day Quarantine – Quarantine can end after DAY 14 without testing AND if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring.

If you receive a positive test result while in quarantine:

  • Wellness Services staff will contact students and share more details if this happens.
  • If you remain without symptoms, you will be able to clear from isolation 10 days after you were tested.