Screening, Testing, and Tracing for Returning to Campus
The health and safety of Fordham’s students, faculty, administrators and staff remain the highest priority in developing plans in alignment with NYS guidelines. In restarting Fordham’s university campuses, four factors underly the protocols: Testing; Screening/Monitoring; Contact Tracing; and Isolation/Quarantine. Each of these factors will ensure that we can closely gauge the health of members of the Fordham community as well as create a safe and immediate response in the event of illness.
All information is kept confidential and follows privacy laws.
Prior to returning to campus, all students and employees will be provided with appropriate information and guidance as to what to expect prior to and upon their arrival to campus. This information will include Fordham’s expectations, policies, procedures and requirements for sound public health practices. Specific details will be provided about the screening program, digital app Contact Tracing, social distancing protocols, facial coverings, health and hygiene best practices, dining facilities, residential housing accommodations, classroom structuring, and communal bathroom etiquette.
The University has instituted mandatory universal testing for all faculty, students and staff. All students and employees who will be on campus will be required to get tested prior to arrival or when they arrive, and again at an interval to be determined after they have been on campus.
As a result of an arrangement we have entered into with the Broad Institute (a collaboration between Harvard and MIT), we will provide on-campus testing for students and employees with results within 24 hours, or as quickly as possible thereafter.
Fordham is offering free COVID-19 testing. However, if you prefer to get tested in your area, New York, New Jersey & Connecticut are offering free COVID-19 testing:
We encourage all students to get tested at home no more than 10-14 days before final arrival at campus. Those who test positive at home will be asked to delay move- in/access to campus until they are no longer symptomatic and are cleared to return by their personal physicians. All students coming to campus will be required to provide proof of testing and clearance (i.e. a negative test result within the last 10-14 days). Please see the Students and Families FAQ for more information.
Screening and Daily Monitoring
The University is partnering with VitalCheck, a telehealth screening program, to perform health screening of all Fordham students, faculty, staff and administrators returning to campus.
Each individual will respond to a series of questions on their smart phone, or by email if one does not have access to a smartphone. This self-certification process must be performed prior to each time they arrive on campus. Members of the Fordham community will need to show clearance from the screening program each time they reenter campus. This clearance will be sent to the Fordham community member via text and email after they have responded to that day’ questions on their smartphone or via email.
If a person is not immediately cleared by the VitalCheck team, he/she will receive a communication advising them of the need for a medical clearance from either a VitalCheck physician or their own personal physician.
Visitors or guests to Fordham will need to be screened prior to being given access to campus. Some guests may be pre-screened before arrival on campus. Contract vendors who work on campus daily or on a regular basis, as well as other vendors that frequent campus, will be required to adhere to Vendor COVID-19 Guidelines which includes screening.
When an individual has tested positive for COVID-19, contact tracing tracks down anyone who might have been exposed to the infected individual for long enough to have put them at risk of infection. In coordination with the NYC and NYS contact tracing programs, Fordham will implement a digital contact tracing tool to assist personnel in the identification and notification of “at-risk” individuals who test positive and those Fordham contacts who have been exposed while on campus. Any application chosen by the University will be carefully vetted by the Office of Legal Counsel and the IT department to ensure compliance with federal and state privacy laws, as well as apply labor law and disability law analysis to possible scenarios.
Anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 will be required to self-isolate for an amount of time prescribed by the Department of Health or their physician. Close contacts to the infected individual will be directed to quarantine themselves so as to prevent further spread. Provisions for self-isolation and quarantine are as follows:
- Commuter and resident students who are able to travel to their homes will be directed to isolate or quarantine at their off-campus residences.
- Residents with a positive test for COVID-19 who are unable to travel home will be isolated in designated residence hall rooms. Residents who are symptomatic or have been exposed to a COVID-19 positive individual will quarantine in their rooms pending their test result if possible. We will supplement these spaces as needed with off campus accommodations.
- We have made provisions to provide ongoing support services, medical oversight through health services and food delivery to isolated students.
- Employees who become ill on campus will be provided with guidance by Human Resources and/or Public Safety on how to isolate/return home, as well as quarantine requirements.
International travel is an evolving situation. Fordham will follow the CDC’s recommendation that people quarantine for 14 days upon arrival in the USA from international travel.
As of July 20, New York State requires that students from states appearing on New York State's mandatory quarantine list will not be permitted to come to campus without documentation of 14 day quarantine in a state that does not appear on the list. Please see the Students and Families FAQ for more information.