February 5, 2021 - Update on quarantine-in-place

Sent to all residence hall students on 02/05/21:

 

Dear residential student,

Some groupings of residents in your building may have been asked to quarantine themselves in their rooms on their floors. This is separate from the general self-sequester that ALL residential hall students must take at this time. If you are a resident who’s been asked to quarantine in your room, see more information, further down in this email. We have asked these students to quarantine in their residence hall room for the following reasons:

  • Due to the current surge in confirmed COVID-19 cases, our dedicated quarantine housing at the Foothill complex is experiencing higher than normal occupancy - which we need to prioritize for use by higher-risk contacts in need of quarantine space, as identified by UHS and public health officials. Students who have tested positive, or who have not tested positive but who have symptoms, are housed at Foothill or other locations outside of your building. 
  • As a result, we’re directing lower-risk students in your building to quarantine in their single-occupancy rooms within their groupings, on their floors. These lower-risk groupings are being quarantined because they have shared an assigned bathroom with someone who tested positive for COVID-19. These groupings do not include known positive cases or students who have been identified as a close contact to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19. 
  • These groupings will be directed to remain separate from other building residents for the entirety of their quarantine period. This will allow us to maintain space for the most critical needs while preventing mixing of those at separate levels of risk.
  • Students who test positive for COVID-19 are still being moved to our dedicated isolation housing space, usually the same day.

Specific information for those students whom UHS has asked to quarantine in your rooms:

Please continue to follow directives from UHS and your Residential Hall staff.

  • As noted above, quarantine space in the Foothill Housing complex has become quite limited. Therefore, asymptomatic students who live in the residence halls who are required to quarantine may not be offered quarantine space at Foothill as has previously been the case. These asymptomatic residents will quarantine in their current residence hall rooms. 
  • Quarantine is a public health requirement, but you are not required to quarantine in place at the residence hall if you have another location where you can quarantine. Quarantine-in-place at the residence hall may increase the risk of transmission between the quarantining individuals due to the shared facilities.  However, it is strongly advised that you quarantine in the manner offered by the campus so that we can best support your ongoing needs, physical, mental, and otherwise. We strongly recommend against returning to your family/home, where you could risk spreading infection to others.
  • Students who must quarantine and are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or who fall into certain higher-risk categories will continue to be offered space at dedicated isolation/quarantine spaces. 
  • Again, please continue to follow instructions from UHS and Residential Life staff about using bathrooms one person at a time, obtaining Cal Dining food in your courtyard kiosk, etc. 

Finally, we know this is a very challenging time for all of you. Release from the current sequestration depends on a decrease in our case rate, and requires all of us to abide by all the measures we have come to learn so well, most importantly, maintaining masking and physical distance until we are through this surge. If you develop any symptoms concerning for COVID-19, please be sure to isolate yourself in your room and call the COVID-19 team line immediately (510) 847-9407, so that we can get you the care you need and ensure others do not get exposed.

Thank you for your care, and as always, reach out to your hall staff with any questions. 

Sincerely,

Anna Harte, MD
Medical Director
University Health Services

Guy Nicolette, MD, CAQSM
Assistant Vice Chancellor

Glenn DeGuzman, Ed.D. 
Director, Residential Life
Associate  Dean of Students
Office of the Dean of Students 

PS: Reminders: we wish to remind everyone that it’s critical to remember: do not socialize or hang out in person; remain in your room as you have been directed to do, practice physical distance when you are out of your room, practice frequent handwashing, and ALWAYS wear face coverings. 

Important Reminders:

  • Do not attend any gatherings or events. We cannot stress this enough — right now it is critical that you avoid gatherings — large or small — even with your residential household grouping, whether indoors or outdoors, and even if your most recent COVID test is negative.
  • Participate in mandatory regular, free surveillance testing: All residents in our residential halls, apartments and suites are required to test twice per weekSchedule your test. 
  • Any student experiencing symptoms or who may have been exposed to COVID-19 (or any students with concerns), please stay in your room and follow the instructions outlined on the University Health Services page.
  • Keep following best practices and protocols: Bears Protect Bears