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Pre-Travel Safety Precautions and Exemptions to Testing

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*Published on August 23, 2020*

Dear Northeastern University students,

On August 7, we shared our safety recommendations before you travel to campus: minimize your contact with others for 14 days before you travel and get a test 72 hours or less prior to your arrival, if you are able. This email reminds you of those recommendations and shares further details on how they will impact your transition to campus.

Getting a COVID-19 Test Before Travel 

Between now and your return to campus, we strongly encourage students to get a COVID-19 PCR test, if you are able. If you test positive, this will allow you to get care and undergo treatment. You would follow your local public health directives to self-isolate until you recover and before you travel to campus. Although a test 72 hours or less prior to your arrival is preferred, we encourage you to get a COVID-19 PCR test any time between now and your travel date.

Please note: This recommendation supplements Northeastern’s testing and quarantine requirements in Boston and does not replace them. All Northeastern students arriving in Boston are required to get a test on the first day of arrival, before they move into their assigned residence hall. They are required to quarantine until their first negative test, and be tested again on the third and fifth days after their first test. Students can fully take part in on-campus activities, including in-person classes, only after their third negative test. For more information on quarantine and arrival, please visit our Travel FAQs.

Reducing the Likelihood of Close Contact  

We recommend that you minimize contact with others for 14 days before you travel to campus. This reduces the likelihood that you’ll be diagnosed with COVID-19 on arrival or that you’ll be designated a close contact of someone who tests positive.

Remember, students who are designated “close contacts” of someone who tests positive for COVID-19 will need to go into quarantine for a full 14 days. You will be deemed a close contact if you’ve had this type of contact with someone who’s tested positive for COVID-19:

  • If you’ve been within six feet for longer than 15 minutes
  • If you’ve had intimate physical contact such as kissing and hugging
  • If you’ve been coughed or sneezed on
  • If you’ve shared eating or drinking utensils such as dishes and cups
  • If you’ve played a sport that can involve close contact with other players, such as basketball, football, volleyball, etc.

If You Have Already Tested Positive for COVID-19 

For our students arriving in Boston: If you have received a positive SARS-CoV-2 viral PCR test within 90 days prior to your date of arrival to campus, please contact University Health Counseling Services at UHCS@northeastern.edu or at 617.373.2772. You will be able to schedule a visit with a clinician who will review the medical clearance document from your primary care provider. This documentation may exempt you from the testing protocols for 90 days from the day of your initial positive test.

Reminder of Daily Protocols 

In accordance with university policy based on guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, even students who have tested positive for COVID-19 prior to arriving on campus will need to follow the daily protocols we expect of each community member: complete the Daily Wellness Check before leaving your residence, wear a mask, practice healthy distancing, and wear your Husky Card visibly at all times. Please review these expectations in the Expectations for Return to Campus Attestation form. Remember to complete and submit the attestation and the COVID-19 consent to testing form before you arrive. We recommend bookmarking the Wellness Portal for convenient access to these wellness tools.

Thank you again for every action you take to help us #ProtectthePackNU—starting now, from your arrival, and through the fall term. Please contact NUCovid19Qs@northeastern.edu or 617.373.7333 with any additional questions, and visit the Northeastern Reopening site for ongoing updates.

Sincerely,

 

Ken Henderson
Chancellor and Senior Vice President for Learning

 

David Madigan
Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs

 

 

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