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questions and answers are available

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.)
  • AND Your health-care provider has advised that it is safe to leave isolation.
Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:38pm

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: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:37pm

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 and you are either symptomatic or unvaccinated, you will be asked to quarantine. More information about quarantine (for both on- and off-campus students) is available in the Testing at the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:35pm

What is the difference between self-quarantine, self-isolation, and self-monitoring? 

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Isolation is the term used to separate people who are sick from people who are healthy. Quarantine means to separate and restrict the movement of healthy people who may have been exposed to an illness to see if they become sick. Monitoring means to monitor themselves for symptoms, such as shortness of breath, a dry cough, or fever by taking their temperature twice a day and remaining alert for coughing or difficulty breathing.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:34pm

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: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:33pm

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 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: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:32pm

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

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Whether you live on or off campus, if your family is fully vaccinated and lives within driving distance of Tufts, you also may go home to complete your 10-day isolation. (Please remember that students who test positive may not use public means of transport.) You can return to Tufts after Health Service medical staff have cleared you to end isolation.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:29pm

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: Wednesday, Oct 20, 2021 - 3:53pm

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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Vaccinated close contacts of a COVID-19 case will not be required to quarantine; however, they must participate fully in the contact tracing process and monitor themselves for symptoms of infection. Those identified as close contacts by Tufts contact tracers will be instructed on who to contact if symptoms develop.

Unvaccinated
close contacts of a COVID-19 case must quarantine. Unvaccinated close contacts will be tested on day 6 or 7 after the exposure and released from quarantine on day 8, if negative, with symptom monitoring for a total of 14 days.

See Testing at Tufts for details.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:45pm

If an employee is considered essential on-campus staff  and has someone at home with COVID-19, should they report to work nonetheless?

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Per CDC guidance and university policy, people who are vaccinated should monitor for symptoms but may report to work.

Vaccinated close contacts of a COVID-19 case will not be required to quarantine; however, they must participate fully in the contact tracing process and monitor themselves for symptoms of infection. Those identified as close contacts by Tufts contact tracers will be instructed on whom to contact if symptoms develop.

Unvaccinated close contacts of a COVID-19 case must quarantine. Unvaccinated close contacts will be tested on day 6 or 7 after the exposure and released from quarantine on day 8, if negative, with symptom monitoring for a total of 14 days.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:40pm

My health-care provider has advised me to self-quarantine. What should I do?

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Self-quarantine is recommended for individuals who may have been directly exposed to COVID-19 but are not experiencing symptoms. Follow the guidance of your health-care provider, and notify your supervisor that you cannot physically come to work.

If your work can be performed at home, you will be expected to work as directed and approved by your supervisor as long as you are asymptomatic during the self-quarantine, and you will receive your regular pay. Nonexempt staff must be sure to record and report their hours worked and should not work unauthorized overtime.

If you are unable to do your work from home, speak to your supervisor about alternative work options so that you can continue work at home. If no work is possible, you will receive your base pay for the self-quarantine period (two weeks). During the self-quarantine period please keep in touch with your supervisor regarding on-line training, professional development or other duties that you may be able to perform from home.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:26pm

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.