Returning to Campus
- Anyone experiencing COVID-like symptoms (fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle or body aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, or diarrhea) or who believes they have been exposed to a positive case should get tested for COVID-19 as soon as possible. This is true whether you have been vaccinated or not as the delta variant does have the ability to infect vaccinated persons.
- You should not come to campus until you are cleared by USF.
- COVID-19 testing is available on all three campuses.
- Faculty and staff can access testing at the USF Health Morsani Clinic on the Tampa campus. Call 813-974-7616 to make an appointment, or if you are a USF Health patient, you can self-schedule an appointment for testing through MyChart.
- There is no charge to any student or employee for the test. If you have insurance, we will bill for the costs of administering the test with no additional cost to you. If you do not have insurance, there will be no cost to you for the test.
- If you are tested off campus please contact firstname.lastname@example.org so that we may provide any additional guidance relevant to your situation.
Those who test positive or learn of a positive case or a possible exposure should report that information to email@example.com. This facilitates a rapid exposure assessment, triggers disinfection of the space if appropriate, and allows us to provide guidance regarding testing or isolation recommendations.
Isolation and Quarantine Protocols FAQ (7/8/21)
Will students, faculty and staff be required to isolate if they test positive for
Yes. USF follows CDC guidance on isolation. People who have tested positive for COVID-19 will need to isolate for 10 days from the date of the first positive COVID-19 test if asymptomatic or 10 days from the onset of symptoms and at least one day has passed since recovery. Recovery is defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications and improvement in symptoms. Individuals may also be directed by medical professionals to isolate if they have COVID-19-like symptoms until they test negative for COVID-19 via a PCR test.
Will residential students be able to isolate on-campus if they test positive?
Yes. Limited spaces in a designated building will be available on campus for residential students who are required to isolate due to a positive COVID-19 test result or as directed by Student Health Services. If residents are able to go home or isolate in an off-campus location, we encourage them to explore those options. View USF Housing COVID-19 Isolation FAQ for more details.
Will non-residential students be able to isolate on-campus if they test positive?
Non-residential students will be required to isolate off-campus if they test positive for COVID-19 or as directed by Student Health Services.
What is the difference between isolation and quarantine?
As defined by the CDC, isolation keeps an individual who is infected with COVID-19 or is symptomatic away from others. Quarantine keeps someone who might have had a high-risk exposure to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 away from others.
What is considered high-risk exposure?
Individuals who are not fully vaccinated who come into close contact (defined as within six feet and for a cumulative 15 minutes or more) with someone who is COVID-19-positive.
Who needs to quarantine?
People who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 will be expected to quarantine off-campus for up to 10 days. However, according to the CDC, people who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 are not required to quarantine if they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and show no symptoms.
Will USF continue to trace high-risk exposures to COVID-19-positive cases?
Yes. In partnership with the Florida Department of Health, USF will continue to identify those who may have been exposed to an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19 and will provide appropriate guidance. If you learn that you have been exposed to a COVID-19-positive individual, please contact assessCOVID@usf.edu or report on the Daily Symptom Checker.
How long do I need to quarantine after exposure?
Student Health Services will assess exposed students to determine when they would be able to return to campus. For faculty and staff, the determination would be made by USF Health medical professionals (assessCOVID@usf.edu), in consultation with the Florida Department of Health. Generally, if you are required to quarantine, you may return to campus after Day 10 from your last contact with a person who tested positive for COVID-19 if you have no symptoms. In order to return to campus on Day 7, you must take a COVID-19 PCR test on Day 6, receive a negative result, and have no symptoms.
Can I stay on campus to quarantine?
No. If you are directed to quarantine, you will be required to leave campus for the duration of the quarantine period and not return until cleared to do so. No on-campus quarantine facilities are available. Students may not quarantine in their residence hall on campus. The university is available to work with students to explore their off-campus options.
What if I miss class due to isolation or quarantine requirements?
Students may experience medical conditions, psychological conditions, illnesses or injuries that require them to be away from the classroom or workplace, or that affect their ability to perform optimally in class or on exams. Per USF policy, attendance is the responsibility of the student and instructors have the discretion to approve or disapprove any absence. Students must be certain to discuss their absences with their instructors at their earliest opportunity (before, during or immediately after their return to class depending on the circumstances of the medical condition or procedure). If assistance is needed, please contact the Dean of Students Office.
Is it possible that I would need to quarantine multiple times?
Unfortunately, if you come into contact with a COVID-19-positive individual and you are not vaccinated, it is possible that you may be required to quarantine each time this occurs.
What happens if I am in contact with someone who is COVID-19-positive (in class, at
a student organization event, in the dining hall, or other activities)?
If you are fully vaccinated, you would not be considered a high-risk exposure and may continue to come to class and participate in campus activities but will be advised to monitor your health for 14 days and report any COVID symptoms. If you are not fully vaccinated and determined to be a high-risk contact by a medical professional, you will be required to quarantine for up to 10 days and should discuss your absence with your instructor to make appropriate arrangements based upon your circumstances.
To submit additional questions about USF and coronavirus, visit usf.edu/covidquestions.