FAQs For Individuals Who Are Potential Close Contacts

I was identified as a close contact. How do I know if I should quarantine?

You are expected to quarantine if:

  • it has been more than 5 months since your mRNA vaccine or more than 2 months since your Johnson & Johnson vaccine, but you have not received your booster shot
  • you received a non-WHO approved vaccine in another country and have not received a booster shot with one of the FDA-approved vaccines here in the US
  • you are not vaccinated due to a medical or religious exemption

You must test negative for COVID on/after day 5 before leaving your quarantine in these cases. You must also wear a well-fitting surgical or N95 mask (not a cloth mask) at ALL times when around ALL others FOR AN ADDITIONAL 5 FULL DAYS. Please carefully review and comply with CDC guidance:

I was identified as a close contact but I received my COVID vaccinations AND my COVID booster. Do I need to quarantine?

No, you do not need to quarantine. However, you should wear a well-fitting mask around others for 10 days from the date of your most recent close contact with someone with COVID-19 (the date of most recent close contact is considered day 0).

Get tested 5 to 7 days after you most recently had close contact with someone with COVID-19.

If you develop ANY symptoms during this time, seek a COVID test and isolate while awaiting results.

I was identified as a close contact but I recovered from COVID within the past 90 days. Do I need to quarantine?

No, you do not need to quarantine. However, you should wear a well-fitting mask around others for 10 days from the date of your last close contact with someone with COVID-19 (the date of last close contact is considered day 0).

If you develop ANY symptoms during this time, seek medical guidance. 

I am a residential student, currently living on campus, and my roommate just tested positive for COVID.

If you are a student living in a Suffolk residence hall whose roommate has tested positive, and you wish to move out until your roommate’s infectious period is over, or you fit into one of the scenarios that require you to quarantine for 5 days (see above), you are encouraged to move home until it is safe to return OR reach out to your Residence Life staff to request a temporary room reassignment. Each case is handled in collaboration with the CHW clinical team and decisions are made on a case-by-case basis.

You should obtain a PCR test 5 to 7 days after your last exposure to your positive roommate or sooner if you develop symptoms. 

I was identified as a close contact, and I have COVID symptoms.

If you have known exposure and symptoms, you need to isolate yourself immediately and seek a COVID test as soon as possible. If you are a residential student, you should go to your residential test site to conduct an unobserved COVID-19 PCR test and drop it in the box provided. If you are a commuter student, you should obtain testing at the 73 Tremont Amenities Room Monday, Tuesday, or Wednesday 7 a.m. - 8 p.m. (you may conduct an unobserved COVID-19 test in the same location if the site is unstaffed on an alternative day, in the evenings or on the weekends).

Remain in isolation until you receive your test result. If your COVID test is positive, you may isolate in your residence hall room. Please see the FAQ for positive students for more information.

If your COVID test is negative, continue to quarantine if required (see scenarios that require quarantine below), and retest 5 to 7 days after your last close contact with someone with COVID-19.

The team of CHW nurse practitioners is available to provide care in the form of a telehealth appointment during clinic hours: Monday – Friday 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Make a same-day appointment at the Student Health Portal. The portal opens up for same-day appointments during the overnight.

If you have concerns about your symptoms at any time, please seek medical advice from your primary care provider’s office or go to an urgent care site. Please call 911 or go to the Emergency Department if you experience difficulty breathing, chest pain, high fever (over 102.9F) or any other concerning symptoms.

I am a residential student, and I need to quarantine.

If you fit into one of the scenarios that requires you to quarantine for 5 days (see above), you are encouraged to move home until you have completed your 5-day quarantine period and tested negative for COVID-19 on/after day 5.

During quarantine, stay home and away from other people for at least 5 days (day 0 through day 5) after your most recent contact with a person infected with COVID-19. The date of your exposure is considered day 0. Wear a well-fitting mask when around others at home, if possible.

If you meet the conditions for leaving quarantine after 5 full days, the CDC requires that you wear a well-fitting surgical or N95 mask (not a cloth mask) at ALL times when around ALL others for an additional 5 full days.

If you develop ANY symptoms during this time, seek a COVID test and isolate while awaiting results.

If you are unable to move home, go to the Student Health Portal and fill out the COVID Temporary Housing Request form in the “Forms” section and call 617-557-1508 to reach the Residence Life staff. Please note that CHW does not make decisions about if/how/when to relocate students in residence halls but does communicate students’ needs to Residence Life staff. You will be contacted by a Residence Life staff member to facilitate any/all relocations.

How do I calculate my quarantine period?

You must quarantine for 5 full days from the date of your last contact with a person who has COVID-19 (date of exposure is day 0; quarantine ends on day 6). You may leave quarantine after 5 full days ONLY IF 1) you have tested negative on day 5 or later since your exposure, AND 2) you are not experiencing any symptoms.

I have completed my 5-day quarantine and tested negative on day 5 or later. Now what?

If you meet the conditions for leaving quarantine after 5 full days, the CDC requires that you wear a well-fitting surgical or N95 mask (not a cloth mask) at ALL times when around ALL others for an additional 5 full days.

If you develop symptoms during this time, seek a COVID test and isolate while awaiting results.

I have completed my 5-day quarantine and my 5-day masking period. Now what?

Provided you are symptom-free, you may return to normal activities. Resume your on-campus testing if required.

What should I do if I need to miss classes?

CAS & SBS Students

Please contact your professors to alert them to your absences. Your professors will determine if your absence is excused and will work with you to make a plan for making up missed work. The Student Affairs Office does not excuse absences. However, if you miss classes for a consecutive week or more for a documented extenuating circumstance or have another concern about being absent, please contact a Case Manager in the Student Affairs Office at 617-573-8239 or email to schedule a meeting to see how they might be able to help.

Law Students

Please contact your professors to alert them to your absences. The Law School attendance policy automatically permits enough absences that should cover a cumulative two weeks out of school for the semester for most classes. If a student exceeds this limit for extraordinary reasons (such as COVID), the policy permits the Dean of Students and professor to determine if there is a way for the student to reasonably make up additional absences. If you are not feeling well or need to be out for another COVID-related reason on the day of an exam, please contact the Dean of Students Office at 617-573-8157 or email. Because of the exam anonymity, you MUST NOT alert your professor(s) to the issue. The Dean of Students Office will assist you. More information can be found in the Exam Postponement Policy.