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questions and answers are available

What organization is analyzing our tests? How long after my test will I receive results?

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The Broad Institute is providing surveillance/routine testing for all campuses. Test results should be available within approximately 24 hours of receipt of the test at the Broad Institute. Read more about the testing protocol in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:10pm

How will the test be administered to me?

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When you are to be tested, you will come into an on-campus testing site and tap/swipe your ID card to automatically print a label for the tube that will contain your cotton swab. You will be able to swab your own nose. When you are done, you drop your swab into the tube, affix the cap securely to the tube, and hand the tube to the healthcare professional for placement in the box for the next shipment to the Broad Institute. More information about all aspects of testing (including a video) are available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:08pm

What if I don’t feel well enough to go to get my test?

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This information varies by campus. Please visit the Testing at Tufts resource to learn more about your options, particularly when you are exhibiting symptoms related to COVID-19.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:07pm

How is risk of exposure being minimized for the people providing COVID-19 tests?

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This information varies by campus. Please visit the Testing at Tufts resource to learn more about the ways in which the individuals providing the clinical support for our testing program are being properly equipped and protected.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:06pm

What happens if I choose not to be tested?

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Regular COVID-19 surveillance across the Tufts community is necessary in order to identify individuals who are asymptomatic (infected but not exhibiting symptoms), so isolation and contact tracing protocols can be initiated.

All faculty, staff, and students who come to any Tufts University campus, regardless of frequency, are required to participate in routine surveillance testing. For more information, visit https://coronavirus.tufts.edu/routine-surveillance-testing.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:05pm

What should I do if I develop symptoms in between scheduled tests?

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This information varies by campus. Please visit the Testing at Tufts resource for information on what to do if you feel ill

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 1:03pm

How will I learn about my testing results?

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Test results are usually returned within 24 hours.

If your pooled test produces a negative result, you will receive an email and a text letting you know that your results are available in the confidential Tufts testing portal, where you may log in to obtain your test results, which will say “NO FOLLOW-UP TESTING NEEDED”.

After your first pooled negative test, you will receive an email inviting you to create an account to log in and view results. This email will be sent to your Tufts email address. If you don’t see it, check to see if it was sent to your junk or spam folder.

If your individual COVID-19 test produces a negative result, you will receive an email letting you know that your results are available in the confidential Tufts testing portal, where you may log in to obtain your test results.

If a pooled test is indeterminate, every individual in the pool will receive a text notification, email, and a phone call (when needed) to let them know that they need to return to the testing center as soon as possible for an individual retest.

If an individual COVID-19 test is positive, a healthcare clinician/provider will call and give you instructions for appropriate next steps and care, including beginning isolation and initiating the contact tracing process, described in more detail on the isolation and contact tracing pages.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 11:19am

Is it possible for the testing process to produce an incorrect negative result in some people who have COVID-19?

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It is possible for the test to produce an incorrect negative result in some people who have COVID-19. Students who test negative but have symptoms of COVID-19 or concerns about exposure to COVID-19 should contact Health Service, and employees should contact their healthcare provider, to determine if they should be retested or take other actions. More information about testing is available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 11:17am

What should I do if I receive a positive test result from a physician or entity outside of a Tufts testing facility?

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If you receive a positive test result from your primary care physician or another entity outside of a Tufts testing site, please provide official documentation of your positive test result for our health providers. Please ensure the uploaded documentation specifies your name, date of birth, what type of test was performed, test result, and test date.

If you were coming to campus regularly at the time of your positive test or onset of symptoms, please contact the Jumbo Health Center at jumbohealthcenter@marathon-health.com or 617-627-0467 so that a clinician can evaluate your individual circumstances and notify anyone at Tufts with whom you have had close contact; you may leave a voicemail with your name and contact number if it is off-hours.

Note: The university is not currently processing tests from external sources (i.e., organizations other than those with which the university has contracted).

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 11:07am

If I’ve received the vaccine for COVID-19, do I need to continue with routine surveillance testing?

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Even if you have received the vaccine, you will be expected to follow all current University public health safety protocols—including continuing to wear masks indoors, physically distance in certain public settings, wear appropriate PPE (goggle, N95s, etc.) in patient care settings, and practice proper hand hygiene. In addition, you will continue in the mandatory routine weekly COVID-19 surveillance testing after you are vaccinated. Even those who are vaccinated can become infected and transmit the virus, though the likelihood is significantly reduced. In addition, the duration of immunity remains unknown in all populations.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 11:04am

Where will my confidential information be stored?

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This information varies by campus. Please visit the Testing at Tufts resource for the specifics about where an individual’s information will be securely stored.

Last update: Monday, Oct 25, 2021 - 10:59am

If my positive test result initiates contact tracing, will my identity remain confidential?

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During contact tracing, your identity will remain confidential. Those identified through contact tracing as needing to be notified will not be given your name. More information about contact tracing is available in the Testing at Tufts resource.

Last update: Wednesday, Oct 20, 2021 - 10:21pm

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.