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Positive cases, isolation, and quarantine

Positive cases

What happens if I receive a positive test result?

NOTE: The following guidance applies to both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who test positive for COVID-19.

Students

Content updated on Aug. 25, 2021:

On-campus students:
If you live on-campus and receive a positive test for COVID-19 at Schiffert Health Center, please follow guidance and next steps from Schiffert Health Center. Do not attend class or work.

If you live on campus and test positive somewhere besides Schiffert, please fill out this disclosure form and upload your results to the Online Student Health Portal and await guidance from Schiffert Health Center. Do not attend class or work. Please contact Schiffert Health Center at 540-231-6444 with immediate questions.

Off-campus students: If you test positive for COVID-19 and live off-campus, complete the Dean of Students disclosure form and upload your results to the Online Student Health Portal Also, isolate yourself in your residence away from roommates/family for 10 days. If you live on campus and test positive somewhere besides Schiffert, we strongly encourage you to also fill out this disclosure form and upload your results to the Online Student Health Portal. Please contact Schiffert Health Center at 540-231-6444 with immediate questions.

Quarantine/isolation: For the 2021-22 academic year, Virginia Tech will not operate a COVID-19 quarantine and isolation program. It is important for students to work with families to develop an advanced COVID-19 plan should they become infected with COVID-19. As with any communicable disease, the Schiffert Health Center and the Dean of Students Office will work closely with students to implement their plan — or discern alternative solutions as needed. We will have limited capacity to accommodate students who cannot return to their primary residence.

Employees

Content updated on Aug. 4, 2021:

  1. Begin isolating at home or return home from work.
  2. Do not report to work.
  3. Report positive test results to your direct supervisor and email results details to reportacase@vt.edu.
  4. Await further isolation guidance from the Environmental Health and Safety office’s Case Management Team.
  5. Contact a health professional with any questions about symptoms.


Close contacts

Content updated on Aug. 24, 2021

What should I do if I’m notified that I’m a close contact with a positive case?

Students

  1. Contact Schiffert to schedule a COVID-19 test at 540-231-6444, option 1.
  2. Begin quarantining in your residence hall room or off-campus residence.
  3. Do not attend in-person classes or activities.
  4. If you live on-campus and are vaccinated, you will need to schedule a test with Schiffert three to five days after your exposure. If you live on campus and are not vaccinated, you will need to go home or enact your COVID-19 plan but you should not stay in your room.
  5. Wear a mask or face covering, even if you are vaccinated.
  6. If you test positive for COVID-19 and live off-campus, complete the Dean of Students disclosure form and upload your results to the Online Student Health Portal Also, isolate yourself in your residence away from roommates/family for 10 days. If you live on campus and test positive somewhere besides Schiffert, we strongly encourage you to also fill out this disclosure form and upload your results to the Online Student Health Portal.
  7. Await further quarantine guidance from Schiffert Health Center or case management teams from the Dean of Students Office and/or Housing and Residence Life.


Additional Student FAQs

Where do I get a COVID-19 test if I have been exposed or told I am a close contact?
Students should call Schiffert Health Center (540-231-6444) to schedule an appointment for testing. If you are fully vaccinated and not experiencing any symptoms, testing options are also available on the Blacksburg campus and can be scheduled within VT Notify.

Under what circumstances will a student need to activate their COVID-19 quarantine/isolation plan?
Unvaccinated students living on campus that have had close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will need to activate their plan once they have been alerted to the exposure. Fully vaccinated students living on campus should activate their plan if they have symptoms after exposure, or if they test positive for COVID-19. Students should contact the Dean of Students office (540-231-3787) with questions relating to activating their COVID-19 plan.

For any questions relating to exposures, testing options, isolation, or quarantine, contact Schiffert Health Center (health@vt.edu) for guidance. Symptomatic students or those with questions about symptoms should also call Schiffert Health Center at 540-231-6444.

Employees

Content updated on Sept. 2, 2021:

  1. Report close contact to your direct supervisor and email reportacase@vt.edu.
  2. Fully vaccinated employees should schedule a test 3-5 days after potential exposure and may continue working as long as they wear a mask indoors and do not develop symptoms or test positive. Unvaccinated employees should return home (or not report to work) and schedule a test 5-7 days after potential exposure. Unvaccinated employees may not continue to work until they have completed their isolation/quarantine period.
  3. Await further isolation/quarantine guidance from the Environmental Health and Safety office’s Case Management Team.
  4. Wear a mask or face covering, even if you are vaccinated.
  5. Contact a health professional with any questions about symptoms.


Additional Employees FAQs

What are my leave options if I need to isolate myself at home after exposure to COVID-19?
Public Health Emergency Leave (PHEL) will be reactivated with the remaining balances available for use, effective Sept. 1, 2021. Note: PHEL leave is inactive from July 10 – Aug. 31, 2021, in the Leave Reporting and Time Worked System.

Employees can use PHEL for many COVID-19 related leave needs and details are available on the Public Health Emergency Leave webpage. In addition to the PHEL benefit, employees can use any applicable leave available for COVID-19 related leave needs. For questions, please contact the Human Resource's Leave Team.

Where do I get a COVID-19 test if I have been exposed?
Non-symptomatic fully vaccinated employees who have had a work exposure to a positive case can schedule a test through VT Notify for one of the Blacksburg campus testing sites. Testing appointments can also be scheduled at certain pharmacies and urgent care facilities throughout the area for non-work exposures or unvaccinated employees.

I am fully vaccinated and have had a work exposure, what do I do?
Contact your supervisor and email reportacase@vt.edu. Schedule a test for 3-5 days after your last exposure, and wear a mask when you are indoors. You may continue to work until you test IF you do not have symptoms.

I am fully vaccinated and tested negative after exposure, what do I do now?
If an employee tests negative, continue to monitor for symptoms and wear a mask for 14 days after last exposure. Contact reportacase@vt.edu with questions.

I am fully vaccinated and tested positive after exposure, what do I do now?
If an employee tests positive, notify your supervisor and contact reportacase@vt.edu for additional support.

I am unvaccinated and have had a work exposure, what do I do?
Contact your supervisor and email reportacase@vt.edu. Begin quarantine and schedule a test for 5-7 days after your last exposure. Unvaccinated individuals may not continue to work after an exposure until they have completed their isolation or quarantine period or are released by a health care professional.

I am unvaccinated and tested negative after an exposure, what do I do now?
If an employee tests negative, continue to self-monitor for symptoms and contact reportacase@vt.edu for return-to-work information.

I am unvaccinated and tested positive after an exposure, what do I do now?
If an employee tests positive, isolate at home and do not come to campus. Notify your supervisor and contact reportacase@vt.edu for additional support.

I am a supervisor and my employee has informed me of a positive case or exposure. What do I do now?
Please refer to the Supervisor Quick Guide for next steps.

Isolation and quarantine


Students

Content updated Aug. 4, 2021

For the 2021-22 academic year, Virginia Tech will not operate a COVID-19 quarantine and isolation program. It is important for students to work with families to develop an advance COVID-19 plan should they become infected with COVID-19. As with any communicable disease, the Schiffert Health Center and the Dean of Students Office will work closely with students to implement their plan — or discern alternative solutions as needed. We will have limited capacity to accommodate students who cannot return to their primary residence.

Employees

Content updated Aug. 4, 2021

If an employee believes they need to isolate or quarantine or have been directed to isolate or quarantine by VDH, the university, or a health care provider, they should notify their supervisor and then the Environmental Health & Safety Case Management Team (reportacase@vt.edu, 540-231-8733) as soon as possible.

How long do I need to isolate or quarantine?
Virginia Tech, in most circumstances, will require a minimum time period of 10 days (return on day 11) prior to returning to a Virginia Tech facility.

Can I test out of quarantine?
If the university determines that an employee needs to return to work earlier than a 10- or 14-day quarantine period and they have not had any symptoms of COVID-19, Virginia Tech may provide the employee with a PCR test after day 5 and allow a return to work after day 7 with a negative test result. All requests for return-to-work testing for employees must come from the EHS case managers.

If an employee has a negative PCR test from before day 5 of quarantine, it will not be accepted for returning to work on campus. If an employee is recommended for this strategy, a viral PCR test will be provided through Virginia Tech to expedite returning to work to support university operations. If offered a test, the employee must accept the test in order to leave quarantine early and come back to work on campus.

What type of leave should I use while quarantining? 
Employees can use PHEL for many COVID-19 related leave needs and details are available on the Public Health Emergency Leave webpage. In addition to the PHEL benefit, employees can use any applicable leave available for COVID-19 related leave needs. 

Employees should work with their supervisor and departmental human resources representative, or contact the Human Resources Leave Team (hrleave@vt.edu) for specific guidance on leave usage during quarantine.

What if I develop symptoms during quarantine? 
If symptoms develop at any time during the 14-day quarantine period, the employee should isolate themselves at home and contact the Virginia Tech Case Management Team (reportacase@vt.edu, 540-231-8733) and/or the VDH, as well as their supervisor.