Isolation and exposure guidelines

Note: The following guidance is intended for campus members not affiliated with UI Health and who do not have clinical duties, such as patient- or study-participant-facing duties. UI Health faculty and staff and students who are currently on a clinical rotation or are engaged in patient-facing activities should follow the guidance provided by University Health Services (UHS) for the clinical setting.

All campus employees are required to inform University Health Service (UHS) by phone or email when they test positive for COVID-19. In addition, civil service employees must receive clearance from UHS when their COVID absence exceeds three days. To do this, employees have two options:

Virtual and in-person appointments are offered between the hours of 7 a.m. and 4 p.m. The last patient will be registered at 3:45 p.m. The office is closed on holidays.

Students on clinical rotations in the University of Illinois Hospital system should adhere to UIH healthcare guidelines. Students on clinical rotations at organizations outside of UIH should follow the guidance of the host organization while on their premises.

Isolation guidance for campus members who test positive for COVID-19

In accordance with CDC guidelines, isolation guidance as of March 1, 2024

I have tested positive for COVID-19
I am asymptomaticI am symptomatic
Mask1 in all settings on UIC's campus for five days from the date you first tested positive.

2 If you develop symptoms, follow the guidance under "I am symptomatic."
Isolate until:
• you have been fever-free for 24-hours without using fever reducing medication, AND
• your symptoms have improved for at least 24 hours.

Upon returning to campus mask in all settings on UIC's campus for the next five days.

It is recommended you limit close contact with others and take additional precautions during this time to lower the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus.

If you begin to feel sick again, you should return to isolation and restart the above guidance.

Examples of these guidelines can be found on the CDC website.

1 High-quality masks and respirators, such as KN95s or N95s, offer the most protection. Masks should be adequately thick, well-fitted, and cover your nose, mouth, and chin. To maximize protection, consider wearing a disposable mask under a cloth mask (double masking).

2 Because you may still be able to spread the virus after returning to campus, steps such as making sure you are washing your hands and covering your coughs and sneezes, physical distancing, improving ventilation, and testing will help lower the risk of spreading the COVID-19 virus.

General campus guidance for individuals exposed to COVID-19

I had close contact with someone who has COVID-19 or who is suspected to have COVID-19
Consider wearing a mask in all settings on UIC's campus through day seven from your last exposure.
• Consider avoiding crowded areas and places where you are unable to mask.

Consider testing two to five days after exposure, particularly if you have had a high-risk exposure.*
• If you test positive refer to, “I have tested positive for COVID-19” guidance.

Monitor yourself for symptoms of COVID-19 for 10 days from your last exposure.
• If you develop symptoms, seek COVID-19 testing as soon as possible. If you are utilizing a COVID-19 self-test and test negative, consider repeat testing 48 hours later.
• UIC Contact Tracing will provide you with tailored guidance and support you.

If you are re-exposed or are unable to avoid contact with a COVID-19 positive person, please report to UIC Contact Tracing for guidance.

*Take extra precautions if you were exposed by someone in your household or another high-risk setting as you are more likley to develop COVID-19.
**Take extra precautions if you will be around someone at high-risk for severe illness, hospitalization or death from COVID-19.