November 10, 2020
As we approach the end of the semester, we want to provide our students with instructions and guidance to prepare for departure from campus for the finals period and winter recess.
Tulane University is requiring all students to complete a COVID-19 exit test before leaving campus. Exit testing will promote public safety by reducing the likelihood of students infected with COVID-19 returning to their permanent residences and surrounding communities. Frequently, COVID-19 is asymptomatic in college-age individuals; testing will decrease the likelihood that a student could take the virus home to a more vulnerable family member.
We will continue to support all students in university-hosted locations for as long as is necessary. Any student who tests positive or is identified as a close contact may stay in the Tulane location even if their isolation/quarantine period goes beyond the last day of classes – Nov. 24. If safe transportation is identified for a student with a positive result or their close contacts, they can leave the university; however, based on CDC guidance and in consideration of public health, we discourage travel by such individuals prior to the completion of their quarantine/isolation period.
Once students leave campus, they should exercise continued adherence to health safety protocols — wearing masks, practicing social distancing, washing hands frequently and limiting gatherings to no more than 15 people – as well as any additional constraints imposed by their local health officials.
Before you leave campus or New Orleans, you should do the following:
- Get an influenza vaccination.
- Tulane is requiring students to get a COVID-19 test within seven days prior to departure. Exit testing should be completed through a Tulane Testing Center beginning Nov. 18. Allow up to 36 hours to receive your results. You should complete your exit testing as close to your date of travel as possible. Make your appointment at a Tulane Testing Center and use your testing QR code.
- If you have previously tested positive for COVID-19, you should follow the guidance given to you by Campus Health regarding the resumption of testing. If your state requires negative test results or other documentation, please contact CHTestResults@tulane.edu for guidance.
- Review the regulations governing travel to your destination. Some states require the completion of a travelers' form prior to arrival, along with specific restrictions and testing requirements after arrival. Complete Travel forms early – do not wait until your day of travel.
- If you previously tested positive, you may need documentation to travel from a healthcare provider.
- Minimize risk of exposure and infection during the weeks leading to departure from campus. Any exposures could disrupt your plans to go home. If you become infected, or if you are exposed to a person who is confirmed to be infected, you will need to isolate or quarantine before traveling.
- Undergraduate student testing will stop Dec. 4, 2020. If you plan to be in New Orleans after Nov. 24, please schedule your exit testing by Dec. 4.
- Graduate and professional student testing will stop Dec. 11 at 5 p.m.
- Symptomatic testing and clinical services will be available for students through Campus Health through Dec. 18. Campus Health will be closed for winter recess (Dec. 19-Jan. 3).
- Faculty and staff testing will stop Dec. 17 at 5 p.m. at the uptown testing locations but will continue through the winter recess at the downtown location. More information on faculty/staff test scheduling will be shared soon.
- Tulane-operated isolation and quarantine space will close on Dec. 18. Students needing assistance after this date will be handled on a case-by-case basis.
- Tulane Testing Centers will reopen and testing will resume on Jan. 4, 2021.
- Please watch for further communications on spring opening and testing protocols.
- *School of Medicine and Clinical staff should watch for communication regarding testing protocols during winter recess.
Day of Travel Advice for Students
- Reduce the number of stops on the trip. Take a direct flight if possible and, if driving, pack food/snacks for the car trip home to reduce stops.
- Delay travel if sick or exposed. Anyone feeling ill, recently diagnosed with COVID-19 (within 10 days) or exposed to someone with COVID-19 (within 14 days) should self-isolate and delay travel. Students should follow guidance from their health care provider regarding when recommended isolation and quarantine periods are complete and travel can be resumed.
- Take safety precautions during travel, especially if using public transportation. Always wear a face covering and consider also wearing a face shield. Stay at least 6 feet away from other people; if not possible on public transportation, sit as far away from other passengers as possible. Carry and use hand sanitizer (with at least 60% alcohol) frequently.
- Use a disinfecting/sanitizing wipe to clean any touchable surfaces in the vehicle in which you are traveling. This includes planes, trains and other forms of transportation.
- Re-check for any requirements or restrictions at your travel destination.
- The least risky option is private transportation by yourself or your family members. If in a car with others outside the household, wear a mask and sit in the back seat if someone else is driving. If weather conditions permit, open the windows.
Arrival-at-Home Advice for Students
- Public health officials advise university students to quarantine for 14 days after returning from campus to their permanent residence.
- If quarantine is not possible, stay physically distant from family household members, wear a face covering and avoid close contact – including hugging and shaking hands – for the first 14 days home.
- Wear a face covering, watch for development of symptoms and avoid contact with others. Please make yourself aware of any public health policies at your destination.