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questions and answers are available

Will my faculty members be notified if I need to quarantine?

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Your faculty members will be notified that you will not be coming to class in person, and you will be expected to participate in your coursework remotely. If you experience challenges with your coursework due to being in quarantine, contact your advising dean. More information (including for both on- and off-campus students) is available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:46am

Under what circumstances will I be asked to quarantine?

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If the contact tracing process indicates that you have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, you will be asked to quarantine. More information about quarantine (for both on- and off-campus students) is available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:40am

What is required of me when I quarantine?

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There are a variety of requirements for students who are in quarantine. More information (including for both on- and off-campus students) is available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:40am

Will my family be informed of my test result?

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Parents and guardians will not be informed of your test result, but we encourage you to inform your families of your results. The university will only disclose your health information (including the results of the COVID-19 test) in the unlikely event your situation becomes life-threatening or the university is otherwise authorized or required by applicable law to disclose your circumstances or if you have signed a consent authorizing us to disclose your results to your parents/guardians or legally authorized representative.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:39am

Under what circumstances will I be asked to be in isolation? Is the situation different for on- and off-campus students? What about SMFA students?

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If/when students test positive for COVID-19 as a result of either their arrival/onboarding test or their surveillance/routine tests during the semester, if they live on campus, they will be moved to on-campus modular residential units (the mods) for isolation and health monitoring. For those living off-campus with a positive test, we will strongly encourage them to use the modular housing on campus so they may be monitored medically.  For those students attending the School of the Museum of Fine Arts at Tufts and living off-campus in Boston, Brewster Ambulance Services will provide transport from Boston to the mods in Medford/Somerville campus. More information about isolation is available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:38am

If I test positive for COVID-19, how long must I remain in isolation?

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Any person with a positive test for COVID-19 OR symptoms of COVID-19, including early or mild symptoms, must remain in isolation (i.e., stay away from others) until:

  • At least 10 days (minimum) have passed from the date of the positive test
    AND
  • No fever (i.e., no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers) for at least 24 hours
    AND
  • Any symptoms (e.g., shortness of breath) have improved
    AND
  • At least 10 days have passed since symptom onset (Note: This means that people with symptoms may be required to quarantine for longer than the minimum 10 days if they have no symptoms on the date of testing but develop symptoms after.)
  • Your health-care provider has advised that it is safe to leave isolation.
Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:37am

What will the modular housing units be used for? What will they offer to students?

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The modular housing units are only be used for students in isolation—not for general housing. Each unit is a single—with heat and air conditioning—and shares a bathroom with one other unit. Each unit has a bed with drawers underneath, a desk and chair, and a wardrobe/dresser. The units are connected to the Tufts network, giving students full Internet connectivity.

Last update: Tuesday, Sep 1, 2020 - 10:30am

If a student tests positive for COVID-19, can they go home rather than into isolation housing?

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This is generally not advised, but may be possible in unique circumstances. People are in isolation because they are contagious; a contagious person travelling or living with people who aren’t infected may put others at risk. It is expected that many students who are in temporary isolation will experience mild or no symptoms and will be able to participate in temporary isolation effectively.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:44am

I have been deemed an essential employee but a member of my household has COVID-19. Should I go to work?

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Employees who are well, but who have an ill household member at home with COVID-19, should not work. Employees should consult first with their healthcare provider and also notify their supervisor that a household member has COVID-19. (Note: If your school (e.g., TUSDM’s COVID-19 response team) has an exposure response team, please make sure to report any exposure/illness to that response team and follow the protocol of your school.) These situations typically require self-quarantine for members of your household. Please refer to the Q&As regarding self-quarantine.

If you test negative for COVID-19, but live in a household with someone who tests positive, it would be recommended that you quarantine for 14 days following your last close contact with the person who is positive. If household members are not able to avoid close contact with one another, the exposed person will need to quarantine for 14 days after the sick person is cleared by their health care professional.

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:43am

My “Essential On-Campus Staff” member has someone at home with COVID-19. Should they report to work nonetheless?

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No. Consider that a staff member sharing a household with someone who has COVID-19 may be exposed themselves. Staff who are exposed to COVID-19 are required, per CDC guidance, to self-quarantine for 14 calendar days. Alternative work options may permit an affected staff member to work at home during this time. 

Last update: Thursday, Aug 20, 2020 - 10:42am

How long does quarantine for close contacts last? When will I be able to return to in-person classes or work?

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Guidance from the Massachusetts Department of Public Health Information and Guidance for Persons in Quarantine due to COVID-19 and the COVID-19 Higher Education Control Plan states that close contacts are to remain quarantined for:

• at least 14 days from the date of last exposure; or
• at least 10 days, provided all of the following are satisfied:
• there are no symptoms of COVID-19;
• a molecular diagnostic test (e.g., polymerase chain reaction (PCR)) to detect the presence of the virus is performed on day 8 or later of the quarantine;
• the molecular diagnostic test is negative; and
• the individual monitors themselves for symptoms for the full 14 days and if symptoms develop symptoms the individual mist should contact their health care provider and be re-tested.

Tufts students, faculty and staff who are close contacts of individuals with COVID-19 are to remain in quarantine and follow the state guidelines referenced above. If a student, faculty or staff member is identified as a close contact and requires quarantine, a COVID-19 PCR test will be performed as soon as possible, on day 4-5 and again on day 8-10.

If the result of the test obtained on day 8-10 is negative, the individual will be able to resume normal activities on day 11; however, they must continue to monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for the full 14 days and continue in routine COVID-19 surveillance testing provided by Tufts at their normal frequency (once, twice or three times per week).

Last update: Tuesday, Dec 1, 2020 - 10:35am

I am a neighbor of Tufts University. What happens if a Tufts student living in my neighborhood becomes infected with COVID-19?

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Through its contact tracing program in partnership with the Jumbo Health Center, Tufts quickly identifies anyone, including students, who have been in close contact with someone who tests positive and ensures that they are notified and told to self-quarantine for the required 14 days.

Students who have tested positive are directed to isolate. Those who live on-campus and test positive move to specialty isolation housing. Those who live off-campus are strongly encouraged to do so at the isolation units on the Tufts campus, where they will be monitored by a clinician. If they isolate off-campus, Tufts provides the resources they need during their recovery so they can remain safely in their residence. Students in isolation are not permitted to leave until they have medical clearance. The identity of anyone who tests positive will remain confidential to protect their privacy as well as those who may have been in close contact with them.

It is worth remembering that people can get COVID-19 without doing anything wrong and being in quarantine or isolation does not imply that an individual was irresponsible or violated any rules.

For more information on isolation for students, see http://go.tufts.edu/isolation. For more on quarantine, see http://go.tufts.edu/quarantine.

Last update: Tuesday, Sep 22, 2020 - 11:05am

These FAQs are subject to change. Please check back here for the latest guidance. If you do not  find the information you are looking for, please send an email to COVID19@tufts.edu.