Elon University / Today at Elon / Community Health Update for January 4

An update from Vice President for Student Life Jon Dooley with community health information, important resources and announcements of any changes to protocols.

Dear Students, Faculty and Staff,

As a reminder, the November 30 Community Health Update email provided important information about changes to COVID-19 practices on campus as we move into the new calendar year, including the discontinuation of the university COVID-19 dashboard and weekly email updates, changes to asymptomatic testing coming at the end of January, and continued encouragement for COVID-19 vaccination and boosters for all students, faculty, and staff.

This message includes some important COVID-19 information for Winter Term:

  • Viruses affecting the campus and local community
  • Asymptomatic and diagnostic COVID-19 testing
  • Who to contact if you test positive for COVID-19
  • Resources for students who test positive or are roommates/close contacts
  • Resources for faculty/staff who test positive or are close contacts

The CDC website also has important COVID-19 domestic and international travel guidance. University information and updates continue to be available on Elon’s COVID-19 webpage.

Viruses affecting the campus and local community

In addition to the flu and COVID-19, there are also other illnesses circulating at this time, including RSV (respiratory syncytial virus), seasonal flu, and common colds.

It is important to know the similarities and differences between flu and a cold, flu and COVID, and the symptoms of RSV. If you are experiencing any of these symptoms, wear a mask in public and consult with a healthcare provider, including TimelyCare (available 24/7 to students), Student Health Services, or the Faculty/Staff Health & Wellness Clinic.

Steps to reducing the spread of communicable diseases include:

  • Wear a mask at all times when around others if you are ill
  • Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer often
  • Limit your exposure to others, especially in close social settings
  • Do not share drinks

As a reminder, it is always a good idea to have over-the-counter medications on hand to treat symptoms of cold, flu, and fever. Over-the-counter cold and flu medications (including fever reducers) and at-home COVID-19 tests are available for purchase on campus at Fountain Market in Clohan Hall. Other options for purchase and on-campus delivery of prescription and over-the-counter medications are available on the Student Health Services website.

Asymptomatic and diagnostic COVID-19 testing

The asymptomatic

esting location in McCoy Commons 212 (Oaks Neighborhood) will continue regularly scheduled operations through Tuesday, January 31:

  • Monday – Thursday: 9 am–noon and 1–4 pm
  • Friday: 9am–noon
  • Check your test results at: www.elon.edu/myreadiness.

On campus asymptomatic testing will be discontinued after Tuesday, January 31. Individuals interested in asymptomatic at-home testing after that date are encouraged to obtain individual at-home antigen tests for personal use. Four tests can be obtained free of charge this winter from the CDC COVID-19 test website. They can also be purchased at local pharmacies or at Fountain Market in Clohan Hall (which may be reimbursable by insurance plans) or utilize off-campus testing resources available from the NC Department of Health & Human Services COVID-19 test locator page.

diagnostic testing for those with symptoms will continue to be available at Student Health Services and the Faculty/Staff Health & Wellness Clinic. Students, faculty and staff who are ill and schedule an appointment will be seen and evaluated by a medical provider.

Who to contact if you test positive for COVID-19

Students who test positive with at-home tests or through an off-campus provider should contact quarantine-support@elon.edu for assistance. Students who test positive through the on-campus resources at asymptomatic testing in the Oaks or symptomatic diagnostic testing at Student Health Services will automatically be contacted by Quarantine Support.

Staff and faculty who test positive at on-campus testing will be contacted by Human Resources for follow up. Those who test positive with an at-home test or through an off-campus provider should contact Human Resources at 336-278-5560 or HREmployeeCovid@elon.edu for assistance and next steps.

Resources for students who test positive or are roommates/close contacts

Guidance for students who test positive and their roommates or close contacts will be provided by the Isolation & Quarantine Support staff in the Office of the Dean of Students.

Students who test positive

  • Reporting positive test results: Students who test positive with at-home tests or through off-campus providers should contact quarantine-support@elon.edu for assistance. Students who test positive through the on-campus resources at asymptomatic testing in The Oaks or diagnostic testing at Student Health Services will automatically be contacted by Quarantine Support.
  • Required isolation: Students who test positive will be required by CDC guidance to isolate for at least five days and, once out of isolation, wear a well-fitting mask around others inside their home or in public (including in class or at work) through at least 10 days.
  • Isolation location: Isolation will take place in their residence hall room, apartment, or house while wearing a well-fitting mask until the date indicated by Quarantine Support.
  • Meals: Students with a meal plan will be able to arrange to pick up meals-to-go through Elon Dining. Instructions will be shared by email and by Quarantine Support staff.
  • Notification to faculty: Quarantine Support/Office of the Dean of Students will notify faculty members via email and OnTrack roster of student positive test results and periods of required isolation.
    • Students should work directly with their faculty regarding missed classes and work.
    • All absences are handled on a case-by-case basis between faculty members and students, following guidelines set in course syllabi. University policies related to absences and attendance are described in the Academic Catalog and determined by academic departments.
    • Individual faculty members may work with students to ensure course learning outcomes can be met, but without any expectation of hybrid instruction.
  • Resources and support: Resources for students in isolation can be found on the Dean of Students website and support is conducted by staff from that office.

Roommates and those identified as close contacts

Those who have had a close contact exposure to a positive case should follow CDC guidance and all safety recommendations:

  • Wear a well-fitting mask for 10 full days
  • Test on day five after your last exposure if you do not have any symptoms of COVID-19
  • If you develop symptoms, get tested immediately and begin isolation.

Quarantine Support will help relocate medically high-risk on-campus students who are roommates of students who are diagnosed with COVID-19, if necessary.

Resources for faculty/staff who test positive or are close contacts

Isolation and close contact guidance will be provided to staff and faculty by Human Resources.

Staff and faculty who test positive at on-campus testing, with at-home tests, or through an off-campus provider should contact Human Resources at 336-278-5560 or HREmployeeCovid@elon.edu.

Individuals who test positive will be required by CDC guidance to isolate for at least five days and, once out of isolation, wear a well-fitting mask around others inside their home or in public (including at work or in class) through at least one day. 10.

During the period of isolation, faculty and staff may elect to use accrued sick or vacation time, or utilize the university’s Temporary Continuity of Work Policy, which will remain available for as long as required isolation protocols are in place.

Those who have had a close contact exposure to a positive case should follow CDC guidance and all safety recommendations:

  • Wear a well-fitting mask for 10 full days
  • Test on day five after your last exposure, if you do not have any symptoms of COVID-19
  • If you develop symptoms, get tested immediately and begin isolation.

Elon’s Temporary Continuity of Work Policy for faculty and staff is also available for individuals who are caring for an immediate family member with COVID-19 or affected by the closure of a daycare or school due to COVID-19.

Note that there will be no weekly Community Health Updates during Winter Term, Our next message will be Wednesday, February 1, after the start of the undergraduate Spring Term.

Best wishes for a successful Winter Term!

,

Jon Dooley, Ph.D.

Vice President for Student Life

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