Ohio University

OHIO COVID-19 Protocol: Positive, Symptomatic, or Exposed

The following guidance covers the steps you should take if you:

  • have tested positive for COVID-19
  • have symptoms of COVID-19
  • have been exposed to a COVID-positive person

Below you will find specific instructions for each of these situations.

If you have tested positive for COVID-19

Contact the Ohio University COVID Hotline

  • If you are experiencing acute symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness, decreased awareness, difficulty staying awake, or bluish lips or face, call 911.  
  • If you are experiencing COVID-19 Symptoms, but they are NOT acute as described above, call the OHIO COVID-19 Hotline to report your positive status: 1-877-OUCOV19 (877-682-6819). Ohio University has partnered with OhioHealth to provide access to clinical case management services for students and employees during the pandemic.
  • If you test positive through OHIO’s Vault Health testing program, you do not need to call the Hotline; a Hotline staffer will reach out to you.

  • A positive test will be treated as such, and subsequent re-tests – even if negative – will not negate the need to isolate.

Get the care you need

  • An OhioHealth case manager will follow up with your recovery progress and advise when you are able to return to work/school.

  •  If you have further questions about your symptoms, call your primary provider or nearest urgent care for further evaluation of symptoms and treatment recommendations. (Students in Athens may contact Campus Care at 740-592-7100.)

Notify Ohio University

  • Notify Ohio University of your need to isolate due to testing positive for COVID-19 with this COVID-19 Incident Report form. You will be assigned to a COVID Campus Liaison (CCL), who will connect you with appropriate campus services.

  • If living on campus, notify Housing and Residence Life immediately by emailing reslife@ohio.edu. Relocation to on-campus isolation housing will be communicated and coordinated between the hours of 8 a.m. and 8 p.m. 

  • Inform your instructor(s) and/or supervisor
    • Discuss options for learning/working remotely.
    • Students: make arrangements directly with your instructor(s) whenever possible—your CCL will help if needed.
    • Employees: contact your immediate supervisor; they, in conjunction with your unit head, will handle arranging teaching or work coverage.
    • Those who need additional assistance to work or study remotely should notify their CCL, who will connect the student or employee with appropriate services.
    • Students and employees who have a disability and need an accommodation should work with the Student Accessibility Services or Office of University Accessibility.
  • Prepare a list of potential contacts from the 48 hours prior to symptom onset until the time you began to isolate. This will help contact tracers

Isolate

  • Follow this isolation checklist.
    • Isolate yourself from the public and others in your living space. Do not go to class, work, the homes of others, or any other public places.
    • The decision to discontinue home isolation is a case-by-case basis situation. Your COVID Campus Liaison will advise when you are able to return to work/school.

If you are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms

Contact the Ohio University COVID Hotline

  • If you are experiencing acute symptoms such as shortness of breath, dizziness, decreased awareness, difficulty staying awake, or bluish lips or face, call 911.
  • If you are experiencing COVID-19 Symptoms, but they are NOT acute as described above, call the Ohio University COVID-19 Hotline: 1-877-OUCOV19 (877-682-6819). Ohio University has partnered with OhioHealth to provide access to symptomatic COVID-19 testing and clinical case management services for students and employees during the pandemic. If you are experiencing symptoms, DO NOT go to any of OHIO’s asymptomatic testing locations.
  • Do not go to any asymptomatic testing locations (Vault Health, CVS) if you are experiencing symptoms. Call the Hotline as instructed above to arrange a symptomatic test.

Get the care you need

  • The provider who places the order for your test will notify you of your results.

  • If your test is positive, an OhioHealth case manager will follow up with your recovery progress and advise when you are able to return to work/school. Follow the protocol for positive cases, above.

  • If you have further questions about your symptoms, call the your primary care provider or nearest urgent care for further evaluation of symptoms and treatment recommendations. (Students in Athens may contact Campus Care at 740-592-7100.)

Notify Ohio University

  • Notify Ohio University of your need to isolate due to symptoms of COVID-19 with this COVID-19 Incident Report form. You will be assigned to a COVID Campus Liaison (CCL), who will connect you with appropriate campus services.
  • Inform your instructor(s) and/or supervisor.  
    • Discuss options for learning/working remotely.
    • Students: make arrangements directly with your instructor(s) whenever possible—your CCL will help if needed.
    • Employees: contact your immediate supervisor; they, in conjunction with your unit head, will handle arranging teaching or work coverage.
    • Those who need additional assistance to work or study remotely should notify their CCL, who will connect the student or employee with appropriate services.
    • Students and employees who have a disability and need an accommodation should work with the Student Accessibility Services or Office of University Accessibility.
  • Prepare a list of potential contacts from the 48 hours prior to symptom onset until the time you began to isolate. This will help contact tracer

Isolate

  • Follow this isolation checklist.
    • Isolate yourself from the public and others in your living space. Do not go to class, work, the homes of others, or any other public places.
    • The decision to discontinue home isolation is a case-by-case basis situation. Your COVID Campus Liaison will advise when you are able to return to work/school.

If you have been exposed to a COVID-positive person

Contact Ohio University COVID Operations

Notify your instructor(s) and/or supervisor

  • Discuss options for learning/working remotely. 
    • Students: make arrangements directly with your instructor(s) whenever possible—your CCL will help if needed.
    • Employees: contact your immediate supervisor; they, in conjunction with your unit head, will handle arranging teaching or work coverage.
    • Those who need additional assistance to work or study remotely should notify their CCL, who will connect the student or employee with appropriate services.
    • Students and employees who have a disability and need an accommodation should work with the Student Accessibility Services or Office of University Accessibility.

Quarantine

  • Follow this quarantine checklist.
    • Isolate yourself from the public and others in your living space. Do not go to class, work, the homes of others, or any other public places.
    • You will need to quarantine until you have been cleared to return to school or work by COVID Operations. Contact your CCL with questions.
    • If you develop symptoms during quarantine, call the COVID-19 Hotline: 1-877-OUCOV19 (877-682-6819) and see the symptomatic protocol, above. Your quarantine time may be extended.

Definitions

 

COVID-19 symptoms: The list of symptoms is rapidly evolving and are frequently updated. The list as of this writing are fever or chills, cough, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing, fatigue, muscle or body ache, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea or vomiting, and diarrhea.

COVID positive: A person becomes a confirmed positive case when given a positive test result.

COVID exposure: Close contact: A close contact is defined by the CDC as someone who was within six feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from two days before the positive individual’s illness onset (or, for asymptomatic people, two days prior to their test).

Contact tracing: There are two parts to contact tracing. 1) Case Investigation: A case (someone who has tested positive or is presumed positive) is called by a COVID Campus Liaison (CCL) or contact tracer. The CCL or contact tracer will inquire about symptoms and all people who may have been exposed (by close contact definition above) during the period that the case was infectious. Those individuals are defined as contacts. The CCL contact tracer will ask for contact details so they can call people who may be at risk. Cases will be asked to isolate. 2) Contact call: All people identified as contacts during the case investigation will receive a call from the contact tracer. They will ask contacts about symptoms and inform them of the need to quarantine. The name of the person who tested positive will not be shared with the contact(s).

Quarantine: Separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.

Isolation: Separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.

Information for Faculty & Staff

Expectations for faculty/staff when responding to COVID-related concerns of others

  • Advise those reporting to you to follow recommendations above.
  • Complete an COVID-19 Incident Report form regardless of whether you believe it has been previously reported by someone else. Do this for each person (faculty/staff/student) who reports their illness or exposure to you. A COVID Campus Liaison (CCL) will inform the supervisor, facilities management, UHR and co-workers when necessary.

  • Do NOT share personal identifying information regarding an individual except for with appropriate authorities (via the incident report form and your supervisor, as needed).

  • Faculty and staff do not need to monitor student compliance with Presidential Health Directives. However, the University does expect faculty and staff to report known cases and exposures via the Incident Report form.

  • Contact tracing will be completed by COVID Operations or the local health department, who will notify close contacts and provide specific instructions regarding quarantine. Do not attempt to perform contact tracing.

Protocol for classroom/space

  • Typically, Facilities Maintenance and Safety’s daily cleaning regimen, which follows CDC protocols, is sufficient.

  • If a room was contaminated by an actively sick individual (vomit, coughing on items, etc.), faculty and staff are expected to post appropriate signage for closing any related University spaces. Signage is available in each classroom and in each departmental main office.

  • A report using the COVID-19 Incident Report form will trigger the creation of a cleaning work order, if appropriate, as well as any necessary contacts to individuals who may have been exposed.

  • Spaces used by individuals who are COVID positive need additional cleaning only if someone was actively sick in the room. If the report comes in more than 24 hours after the incident, no additional cleaning is required.

  • Once the cleaning protocol is complete, the space may be reopened. Facilities Maintenance and Safety will remove the signs following cleaning and post a sign indicating the room is clean.

Role of COVID Campus Liaisons and the Incident Report form

  • A COVID Operations staff member reviews each COVID-19 Incident Report form, filters for duplicates, and triages next steps. Individuals are assigned a COVID Campus Liaison, who will be in contact to connect them with appropriate resources and services.
  • OHIO COVID Operations will analyze data from Incident Report forms to identify patterns and trends. This information will be used to make decisions regarding campus safety and to develop mitigation strategies.