To protect the health of the campus community, isolation, contact tracing and quarantine protocols are in place for when students, faculty or staff test positive for COVID-19.

This protocol does not apply to UCLA Health employees, who must follow protocols for health care settings, or to pre-K–12 schools and programs, which must follow the LACDPH’s reopening protocol (PDF)  and exposure management plan (PDF).


Positive tests and close contacts

If you test positive through UCLA’s campus testing program, you’ll be contacted by campus health officials with instructions on isolation. Your “close contacts” — those who have been within 6 feet of you in an indoor setting for a total of 15 minutes over a 24-hour period — will be notified by contact tracers, who will provide instructions on testing and quarantine.

If a student tests positive outside the UCLA campus testing program — or if they are experiencing COVID-19–related symptoms or know they have been in close contact with an infected person — they should contact the Exposure Management Team through the UCLA Ashe Center’s COVID Hotline at 310-206-6217 or exposuremanagementteam@ashe.ucla.edu. Faculty and staff members in the same situation should contact the UCLA COVID Call Center at 310-267-3300 or covidcallcenter@mednet.ucla.edu.

Please note: During periods in which there is a high volume of inquiries, the wait time for calls to the Exposure Management Team and Call Center may be longer than expected.


Isolation

If you test positive or have COVID-19 symptoms and are awaiting test results, you’ll need to isolate, either at home or on campus. When isolating, you should not have visitors and should only leave to receive medical care.

UCLA will provide appropriate accommodations for students living in UCLA-owned housing who need to isolate. You should bring along enough personal belongings — clothing, medications, laptops, phones, chargers and school supplies — to last 10 days. UCLA will monitor your health, and staff will arrange for meal delivery three times a day. Students and employees living in non-UCLA housing should remain in a private room with a private bathroom, if possible, and arrange for meals and other essential needs.

Please note: Isolation requirements may differ for faculty and staff, students living in UCLA-owned housing, and students in non-UCLA housing.


Faculty and staff

Faculty and staff are required to isolate for 10 days but can end their isolation and return to work early if the following criteria are met:

  • Symptomatic cases 
    You can end your isolation after Day 5 (where Day 0 is the first day symptoms appeared) if: (1) Your symptoms have improved and you are fever-free for at least 24 hours without needing fever-reducing medications and (2) you take a PCR or rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later and receive a negative result — see below for details on rapid antigen tests.
  • Asymptomatic cases
    You can end your isolation after Day 5 (where Day 0 is the day your positive test was taken) if: (1) You’ve remained asymptomatic and (2) you take a PCR or rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later and receive a negative result — see below for details on rapid antigen tests.

If you are released from isolation after Day 5, you must wear a highly protective mask while around other people — both indoors and outdoors — until 10 days have passed since your isolation began.

Confirm completion of your isolation through the UCLA Symptom Monitoring Survey to be cleared for campus.


Students living in non-UCLA housing

Students must isolate for 10 days unless they meet the early-release criteria below:

  • Symptomatic cases
    You can end your isolation after Day 5 (where Day 0 is the first day symptoms appeared) if: (1) Your symptoms have improved and you are fever-free for at least 24 hours without needing fever-reducing medications and (2) you take a rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later and receive a negative result — see below for details on rapid antigen tests. (Please do not use a PCR test from a campus vending machine to test out of isolation.)
  • Asymptomatic cases
    You can end your isolation after Day 5 (where Day 0 is the day your positive test was taken) if: (1) You’ve remained asymptomatic and (2) you take a rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later and receive a negative result — see below for details on rapid antigen tests. (Please do not use a PCR test from a campus vending machine to test out of isolation.)

If you are released from isolation after Day 5, you must wear a highly protective mask while around other people — both indoors and outdoors — until 10 days have passed since your isolation began.

Confirm completion of your isolation through the UCLA Symptom Monitoring Survey to be cleared for campus.


Students living in UCLA housing

You must remain in your isolation room for a total of 10 days.

However, you may be able to enter a “modified” isolation after Day 5 if the criteria below apply. Under this plan, you won’t be able to return to your dorm room, but you will be allowed to leave your isolation room to attend in-person classes and to participate in other campus activities, as well as community activities off campus. You won’t be able to dine indoors, but you can pick up grab-and-go food from the dining halls. (Clearance for class attendance and food pick-up will be provided through the Symptom Monitoring Survey.)

  • Symptomatic cases 
    You can enter modified isolation after Day 5 (where Day 0 is the first day symptoms appeared) if: (1) Your symptoms have improved and you are fever-free for at least 24 hours without needing fever-reducing medications and (2) you take a rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later and receive a negative result — see below for details on rapid antigen tests. (Please do not use a PCR test from a campus vending machine to test out of isolation.)
  • Asymptomatic cases 
    You can enter modified isolation after Day 5 (where Day 0 is the day your positive test was taken) if: (1) You’ve remained asymptomatic and (2) you take a rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later and receive a negative result — see below for details on rapid antigen tests. (Please do not use a PCR test from a campus vending machine to test out of isolation.)

If you enter modified isolation after Day 5, you must wear a highly protective mask mask while around other people — both indoors and outdoors — until 10 days have passed since your isolation began.

Confirm completion of your isolation through the UCLA Symptom Monitoring Survey to be cleared for campus.


Rapid antigen testing: Early release and ‘modified’ isolation

Faculty and staff: Employees who take an at-home rapid antigen test on Day 5 or later to be released early from isolation should submit proof of their negative test (a photo of the test is acceptable) through the Symptom Monitoring Survey.

Students: The following students should report to the Ashe Student Health & Wellness Center to take a rapid antigen test on Day 5 (or later) for early release or modified isolation:

  • Students in on-campus UCLA isolation housing
  • Club sports student-athletes
  • Medical, dental and nursing clinical students who are considered health care workers

All others students can submit proof of their negative antigen test on Day 5 or later (a photo of an over-the-counter, self-administered test is acceptable) to the Exposure Management Team through the Symptom Monitoring Survey.


Quarantine exemptions

Certain students, faculty members and staff members who are identified as close contacts of an infected person will be exempt from quarantine if they meet the criteria for their particular group and follow the quarantine exemption requirements listed below.

Exempt faculty and staff: Those have been in close contact with an infected person are not required to quarantine if they are asymptomatic, regardless of their vaccination status. These faculty and staff members can continue to work on site.

Exempt students: Those have been in close contact with an infected person do not need to quarantine if they are asymptomatic, regardless of their vaccination status, and can remain on campus.

Additional exemptions: Students, faculty and staff who have been in close contact with an infected individual but are asymptomatic and have recovered from COVID-19 in the previous 90 days do not need to quarantine.

Quarantine exemption requirements: In order to remain exempt from quarantine, the individuals in the categories above must do the following:

  • Continue to monitor for symptoms.
  • Wear a highly protective mask while around other people — both indoors and outdoors — until 10 days have passed since your exposure to the infected person.
  • Take a PCR or rapid antigen test (at-home tests are acceptable) within 3–5 days of your last exposure and receive a negative result. (If your result is positive, follow the instructions in the “Isolation” section above.)
  • If you develop symptoms, isolate immediately and test as soon as possible — do not wait 3–5 days to test.


Full quarantine

Individuals who are close contacts of an infected person and who are not able to follow UCLA’s quarantine exemption requirements listed above must follow these full quarantine procedures:

  • Students living on campus
    Remain in quarantine for 10 days. UCLA will identify appropriate quarantine accommodations for students who live in university-owned housing. They should bring along enough personal belongings — clothing, medications, laptops, phones, chargers and school supplies — to last the full 10 days. UCLA will monitor your health, and staff will arrange for meal delivery three times a day.

    Quarantining students shouldn’t have visitors and should only leave to receive medical care or to procure a COVID-19 test through a campus vending machine, if necessary. If symptoms develop, follow the instructions in the “Isolation” section above.
  • Students, faculty and staff living off campus
    Remain in quarantine for 10 days in a private room with a private bathroom, if possible, and arrange for meals and other essential needs.

    Quarantining students, faculty and staff shouldn’t have visitors and should only leave to receive medical care. If symptoms develop, follow the instructions in the “Isolation” section above.

Completion of quarantine: Students, faculty and staff should confirm completion of their 10-day quarantine through the UCLA Symptom Monitoring Survey to be cleared for campus.


Further details

For full details on UCLA’s isolation, quarantine and contact tracing procedures, see the following campus protocols:

Recommended COVID-19 resources

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