As shared in Friday’s Fall 2020 email update to students and parents, last week Governor of Ohio Mike DeWine issued a travel advisory recommending that “Those entering Ohio after travel to states reporting positive testing rates of 15% or higher for COVID-19 are advised to self-quarantine for 14 days.”
As has been our approach throughout the pandemic, we are committed to following the guidance of national, state and local government officials and ensuring our response to the changing COVID-19 landscape is well-reasoned and made in consultation with medical and public health professionals. Over the weekend, we consulted with those experts to develop an approach to the travel advisory that meets several important critical criteria:
- Satisfies the recommendation from the State.
- Creates the least amount of disruption to students and parents with regard to travel to campus for move in (i.e. protects their current move in date and time).
- Allows students to move directly into their residence hall and begin making important roommate and other peer connections (instead of quarantining for 14 days in university-provided quarantine housing after arriving on campus).
- Creates the least amount of disruption to the start of classes for students (i.e. does not require students to participate in the first two weeks of classes remotely because they are in quarantine on or off campus).
With those goals in mind, we are requiring all students traveling to Denison from the states on the Governor’s travel advisory list to:
- Monitor Symptoms: As previously communicated, students should be monitoring symptoms and logging them daily via our Wellness Portal. On Monday, July 27, students began receiving a daily email reminding them to log in and report. This video explains the process.
- Self-quarantine for 14 days prior to returning to campus, which entails:
- Using standard hygiene and washing hands frequently
- Not sharing things like towels and utensils
- Staying at home, not having visitors, avoiding in-person activities
- If you live in a home with other people who are not quarantining (i.e. if they are leaving the household/interacting with others outside the family/household unit), wear a face mask when you are in the same room and stay at least six feet away from others.
- Take and submit negative results from an SARS-CoV-2 RT PCR test, also known as COVID-19 polymerase chain reaction (PCR) test within 14 days prior to arriving for move-in.
- We recommend contacting your primary medical provider to request COVID-19 testing. Most medical offices will provide you with an order to take to a local testing site
- If you are unable to acquire an order from your home medical provider, we recommend you explore the following options:
- Lab Corp Self-test Kit: Please be aware that upfront payment is not required to obtain a kit. Federal legislation enacted in March 2020 requires comprehensive private health insurance plans to cover this test and provides funds for reimbursement to providers for COVID-19 testing for uninsured patients. If you choose to pay out-of-pocket, you are electing not to seek reimbursement through this mechanism.
- CVS: Once you enter your zip code, they will provide you with a local list of testing locations.
- Urgent Care Centers in your local area
- Please watch this video for instructions on how to submit your test results.
We take seriously the responsibility of mitigating the risk of COVID-19 for our campus community and we will continue to modify our plans in response to guidance from medical and public health professionals and national, state and local government officials. Below are some answers to questions you may have regarding these new guidelines. If you have questions that aren’t answered here, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Questions and Answers
What if I don’t have access to a SARS-CoV-2 RT PCR test?
If you are having trouble accessing an approved test, please contact the Student Wellness Center 740-587-6200.
Why aren’t other forms of testing accepted?
We are requiring SARS-CoV-2 RT PCR test because other tests (antibody or rapid antigen) are not recommended for the purpose of detecting asymptomatic acute infections.
What if I can’t afford an FDA-approved diagnostic test?If you need financial help in obtaining an FDA-approved diagnostic test, please contact Samantha Smith at email@example.com or 740-587-5320.
What if I don’t get results back in time?In order to move into your residence hall you will need to have provided verification of a negative test result from an FDA-approved diagnostic test. If you are unable to obtain one in time, please contact the Student Wellness Center 740-587-6200.
What if I show up to campus to move-in and I have not submitted results from a diagnostic test?If you arrive on campus without having proof of a negative test result from an FDA-approved diagnostic test you will have to remain off campus (at your own expense) until a test can be taken and a negative result is provided.
Why do I have to get a test? The recommendation is only for quarantine so if I self quarantine before returning to campus why isn’t that enough?The recommendation is that individuals from states reporting 15% or higher positive testing rates self quarantine “after leaving those locations.” Since we are asking students to observe the quarantine period at home before returning, the test is an extra layer of caution.
What if I am coming to campus from one of these states but already have plans to or can make arrangements to self quarantine in Ohio 14 days prior to move-in?If you already have made those plans and can provide proof, please contact the Student Wellness Center 740-587-6200.
What if I am traveling through one of the recommended quarantine states on my way to Ohio?Those who are simply passing through another state in transit are not subject to quarantine.