Steps to follow after testing positive for the coronavirus


Amal Younis

File photo.

by Katelynn Robinson, News Editor

As students return to campus, classes and to their social events COVID-19 cases have been on the rise. This news was expected because, although 95.2% of the San Diego State student population is vaccinated, contracting COVID-19 remains a possibility. 

Students who test positive for COVID-19 are required to report their test to the university within three hours of receiving the results. From there, students will be contacted by a personal case manager who will evaluate their level of illness.

For students living in SDSU residence halls, isolation spaces will be available on campus this year. The Office of Housing Administration was unable to disclose specific isolation information due to HIPAA and FERPA privacy laws, however, the university shared that the isolation site does not house any residents who are not actively in isolation. 

“Isolation housing is often one per room, or may have no more than two residential students per room,” a statement from the university said. “For those with two, they are matched based on similar isolation timelines (e.g if they are being moved into isolation on approximately the same day).”

All students who test positive regardless of symptomatic status will need to move into isolation. Even students who are vaccinated and asymptomatic must isolate in accordance with U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention to prevent the spread of COVID-19 to others, according to the university.

While students are in isolation, a university housing staff member will be assigned to each student. The case manager will check in with the isolated student daily to ensure proper support and resources are available to the student. The students may communicate any dietary or allergy-related food restrictions to this staff member. 

“A food delivery program provides lunch, dinner and breakfast (for next day) around noon, Monday through Friday for each day in isolation,” the university statement said. “Meals and snacks for the weekend are included on Friday’s delivery.”

The duration of the isolation period is determined by the symptom onset date or the test date, consistent with CDC guidance.

If a student who has been attending in-person classes tests positive, the faculty and students also attending that class will be notified. Close contacts are directly notified, while the rest of the class is advised to be tested. 

“The university has not seen any transmission connected to instructional or research settings throughout the pandemic,” the university statement said. 

The statement also clarifies that direct exposure to the virus requires that someone was within six feet of a person who tested positive, during their infectious period, for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, according to the CDC. 

“The campus community’s low case rates and low positivity rate, wastewater testing (from which a positive signal prompts testing for all identified residents, regardless of vaccination status), and other outcomes support that the community continues to have low rates of COVID-19,” the university statement said.