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Screening, Testing, and Tracing for Returning to Campus

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Contact Tracing

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.

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The University is offering testing from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. on weekdays only, excluding University holidays. You can find information and sign up for testing at the University Health Services page.

All students, faculty, and staff returning to campus for the spring semester will be REQUIRED to be tested with a FDA EUA authorized PCR saliva or nasal swab test. They will not be allowed to enter campus or move into a residence hall without providing the negative test results in advance or bringing a copy of the results with them. They will then be tested again within the first week of arrival. 

As during the fall semester, all students, faculty, and staff accessing campus will be required to obtain a test once a month throughout the spring semester. The deadlines for mandatory testing are February 26, March 26, April 23, May 14. 

Employees: Please see the Employees FAQ for more testing information.

Students: Please see the Students and Families FAQ for more testing information.

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Screening and Daily Monitoring

The University is partnering with VitalCheck, a 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. 

Learn more about the VitalCheck screening program.

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The New York state Department of health advises that if you test positive for COVID-19, you should talk to your health care provider and stay home in isolation. Stay away from others, and  notify your close contacts that they have been exposed.

If your test result is negative, and your health care provider no longer suspects COVID-19, but you have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19, you need to stay in quarantine for 10 days and monitor for symptoms for 14 days. Stay home. Stay away from others.

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.

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Contact Tracing

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 deploy its own contact tracing program. Fordham students, faculty, or staff who have received a positive test for COVID-19 will be contacted by a contact tracer and asked to share details of any close contact (defined as anyone they have been within 6 feet for 10 or more minutes during the four days prior to the positive test result or the four days prior to the first onset of symptoms, whichever period is longer). Contacts will be notified by the contact tracer of their exposure and will be provided guidance regarding quarantine and testing.


Fordham strongly recommends that all members of the University community add the COVID Alert NY contact tracing app to their smartphones. COVID Alert NY is a voluntary, anonymous, exposure-notification smartphone app. You will get an alert if you were in close contact with someone who tests positive for COVID-19. The app keeps personal information confidential and does not track your movements.