Fact Sheet for Students: What to Do While Isolating On Campus

Isolation prevents the spread of an infectious disease like COVID-19 by separating people who have tested positive and may have symptoms from those who have not. Because of your positive test for COVID-19 you will need to relocate to dedicate isolation housing on Old Campus. In most cases, isolation lasts for 10 days.

Hearing that you tested positive for COVID-19 and need to isolate can be unsettling, but the goal is to keep you safe while also protecting others from being exposed to illness. Your health and well-being are important to us, and we are here to support you as you navigate this uncertain time. Moving to isolation housing is required for undergraduate and graduate students living on campus. It is available for students living off campus based on availability.

First steps

  • Pack items you will need such as clothes, toiletries, phone, laptop, chargers, and any medications. Additional things can be brought to you.
  • The Isolation Housing team will text and email you with your room assignment.
  • Plan to arrive at you assigned room on Old Campus within 90 minutes.
  • Meals and linens will be provided, you will also receive a package with helpful items.

While isolating

  • Stay in your assigned room as directed. You may not have visitors and should avoid close contact with others.
  • Monitor your health and call the Campus COVID Resource Line (203-432-6604) if you have questions or concerns.
  • You will be contacted by Yale Health nurses frequently either by phone or email to monitor your symptoms. Take your temperature and check your oxygen level with the fingertip pulse oximeter twice a day and record the results. The Yale Health nurses will be collecting this information to help manage your care.
  • Wear a mask or face covering if you leave your room to use the bathroom, showers or other necessary reason. Practice physical distancing (at least 6 feet or 2 meters) from others.
  • Do not share items with others, like dishes, drinking glasses, cups, eating utensils, towels, bedding, etc.
  • Do not shake hands, hug, kiss or engage in other physical contact.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • People in isolation can utilize a shared bathroom one at a time, wearing a mask and cleaning after use.
  • Clean all “high-touch” surfaces daily, such as counters, tabletops, doorknobs, bathroom fixtures, toilets, phones, keyboards, tablets, and bedside tables.

What to watch for

The majority of cases of COVID-19 in younger people are mild but you need to take symptoms seriously. If you develop new symptoms or your symptoms are getting worse call the Campus COVID Resource Line right away 203-432-6604. The Yale Health team is available 24/7. A video visit with a Yale Health provider will be scheduled and a plan for medical care will be developed. Older adults and people with certain medical conditions are at higher risk for serious illness with COVID-19.  A list of conditions can be found at https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/index.html.

Call 911 immediately if you develop:

  • Difficulty breathing or shortness of breath
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion or inability to arouse
  • Bluish lips or face

Length of isolation

If you had symptoms, the duration of isolation is 10 days from the onset of the illness, plus at least 24 hours without a fever and improvement in symptoms. You will not be required to undergo testing for 90 days.

Testing out of isolation

False positive tests can occur. If you did not have symptoms you will undergo repeat testing to determine if the first result was accurate or if you are no longer infectious. You will be notified and given a testing schedule by Yale Health if this applies. Repeat testing will be scheduled at Bingham the morning after you arrive and again 24 hours later. Due to the possibility of false positives, it is imperative that strict isolation is maintained at Bingham.

If either repeat test is positive, the initial result is a true positive and you will remain in isolation for a total of 10 days from the first positive test. You will not be required to undergo testing for 90 days.

If both repeat tests are negative, then the initial test was a false positive or you are no longer infectious and you do not need to remain in isolation. You will resume surveillance testing as scheduled.

Release from isolation will be provided by the Yale Health Care Management team. Once released from isolation, you may return to your residential college.

  • Campus COVID Resource Line: 203-432-6604
  • Mental Health and Counseling: 203-432-0290

Up-to-date university guidance and information about COVID-19 can be found at covid19.yale.edu.

Ways to stay active and connected

Isolation can be a difficult time and you may find yourself worrying and concerned about many things. Try to keep yourself and your mind busy, and stay connected with people who can support you.