All guidelines and protocols are based on the latest guidance from our Emory Healthcare professionals, the Georgia Department of Public Health, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other local, state, and federal public health officials. Emory University will follow these protocols for its students who either have been exposed to COVID-19 or test positive for the virus.

Letter to Parents (Jan. 13) - Modifying Emory’s isolation and quarantine (I/Q) processes


Oxford Isolation/Quarantine Guide,
please visit Oxford Forward

Similar institutions experienced extreme levels of cases, which the systems we had in place would not have been able to support in the current model. COVID-19 is evolving, as does our approach in supporting students, based on the available data and experience. In a community that is more than 98 percent vaccinated, students are rarely getting severely ill.  

Our responsibility is to identify and support the most vulnerable and ill in our community. Those with mild or no symptoms must be isolated to minimize further spread and supported in residence in a way that is proportional to their level of illness. Students have always remained in their residence halls when they had the flu or mono and were able to effectively navigate those situations although stressful. Students have the strength, knowledge, and the agency to navigate COVID with added support and processes in place to do so. 

I am an Atlanta campus student who:


  • Access care through the Student Health Patient Portal and message the “COVID-19 Assessment Provider” on your status.

  • If you have urgent symptoms or questions after hours or over the weekend, call Student Health Services at 404.727.7551 and press “0” for the medical call center.

I am an Oxford campus student who:


  • Call the Oxford Student Health office at 770.784.8376 Monday through Friday from 8:30 a.m. to 5:00 p.m. Oxford Student Health will arrange a telehealth or in-person office visit.

  • For after-hours and weekends, call 404.727.7551 and press 0 for the medical advice nurse.

Emory has adopted the definitions for these terms and processes as determined by the CDC:

Isolation refers to the separation of people with a positive COVID-19 test or a diagnosis of presumed positive. Persons under investigation (PUI), who have pending test results, are also isolated.

  • Calculation: Day 0, isolation begins the first day of symptoms or, if asymptomatic, the day of the positive test.
  • Exit day: Count out 5 days and exit on day 6 if the student meets the criteria for release on day 5. Isolation exit day will vary based on an individual’s specific situation and can last up to 10 days. Most students will be eligible to end isolation on day 5 (and exit on day 6) if their symptoms are significantly improved.

Quarantine refers to the separation and restriction of the movement of people who have been exposed to a person who received a positive COVID-19 test or has been diagnosed as a presumed positive case. Quarantine only applies to individuals who are not up to date on vaccinations.

  • Calculation: Day 0 is the last day of exposure.
  • Test: Upon entry (recommended) and repeat testing on day 5 (required).
  • Exit day: Provided the test result from day 5 is negative, the student will be discharged but they must continue wearing a form-fitting mask for an additional 5 days.
  • Students must continue to self-monitor through day 10 to be released from the Contact Tracing Team's records.

Individuals who are up to date with vaccines are vaccinated with the primary series and the booster. 

Individuals who not up to date on vaccinations are unvaccinated, either with the primary series or vaccinated with the primary series but have not received a booster even though they are eligible. (You are eligible for a booster if 5 months has passed since your second dose of Pfizer or Moderna, or 2 months since a J & J vaccine.) 

Isolation and Quarantine Procedures

Click to enlarge

Emory University Student Health Services Isolation and Quarantine Procedures


A person is presumed to be COVID-19 positive when they have specific symptoms consistent with COVID-19, and they have been diagnosed as presumed positive by a clinician.

A person is presumed to be positive if they experience loss of taste and smell (not due to nasal congestion), which are symptoms highly specific to COVID-19.

A person is presumed positive if they experience COVID-19 symptoms of worsening cough and/or fever AND have been exposed to a known COVID-19 positive person within 14 days.

The definition of presumed positive is a clinical determination and will evolve as we experience the impact of the Omicron variant and may vary depending on the level of exposure and symptoms experienced.

SHS utilizes a point-of-care PCR test which is highly sensitive and specific. If a student is symptomatic, no further testing is required regardless of the result.

It depends upon the situation. For those who are symptomatic and have a positive antigen test outside of Emory or from a home test, the CDC algorithm does NOT recommend repeat testing. The current saliva testing strategy built through Emory University for asymptomatic screening utilizes a highly sensitive antigen test which, if positive, is automatically followed by a PCR test to ensure accuracy. In other words, a follow-up PCR is inherent in the current process for any positive saliva test.

Criteria for isolation in place for a COVID positive individual:

  • Asymptomatic

  • Mild symptoms such as:

    • Low grade fever <101

    • Nasal congestion/runny nose

    • Sore throat

    • Mild cough that does not interrupt sleep or discussion

  • No high-risk health conditions

  • Must be able to wear a KN95 mask or a form-fitting surgical type mask at all times in the residence hall

  • Must be able to access food at a central location             

  • As decided by a Student Health Services provider based on their clinical assessment

Criteria for ECCH isolation:

  • All unvaccinated individuals must go to ECCH if they test positive. Unvaccinated individuals have a longer infectious period, tend to get sicker, and shed virus longer.

  • All vaccinated individuals with moderate to severe symptoms, which may include:

    • Fever > 101 (chills, rigors, sweats as a possible proxy)

    • Significant cough which interrupts sleep and discussion

    • High-risk medical conditions such as diabetes, immunomodulating medications, etc.

  • As decided by a Student Health Services provider based on their clinical assessment

We recommend you bring the following "Go Bag" items with you if you are instructed to move into isolation/quarantine at ECCH:

  • Chronic medications for two weeks

  • Computer, cell phone, headphones and tech items (especially chargers)

  • Academic items and books

  • Clothes/underwear (enough for a week as laundry is available)

  • Personal items/Toiletries: toothpaste, toothbrush, hair products, feminine products, deodorant, glasses/contacts, retainer, skin medications

  • Pillow and other comfort items

If a student has had COVID-19, they will not need to be quarantined within 90 days of their symptom onset or positive test results.

For those students who have had a positive COVID-19 test less than 3 months ago, please access the Student Health Portal and send a message to the COVID Assessment Provider and upload the documentation of your positive test (antigen or PCR) on the immunization tab within the portal. Repeat testing is not needed at this time.

If your positive test was over 3 months since the onset of symptoms or a new exposure, you will need repeat testing. Antibody testing will not be accepted at this time per CDC guidelines.

If you are at high risk for infection or complications of COVID, speak to a COVID Assessment Provider via your Student Health Portal. Based on specific criteria, you may be eligible to isolate or quarantine at the Emory Conference Center Hotel (ECCH).
Yes and no. If you meet criteria for isolating in the ECCH, we highly recommend that you do so and use the resources for the support you may need. This will be your choice. If you do not meet criteria for isolating in the hotel, you will isolate in place in your residence hall.
Student privacy is of the utmost importance. The teams involved in coordinating care will utilize applications to ensure privacy and confidentiality. Medical records will remain confidential treatment documents under FERPA and separate from other logistic or support records.


The Isolation Team will retain a confidential roster of students who are in isolation and quarantine. Students in isolation will receive a daily symptom survey via text message. Students should fill out the survey every day especially if they want a provider to call them on that day.

If their symptoms worsen while in I/Q, students should send a message through the Student Health Portal to the COVID Assessment Provider or call Student Health Services at 404-727-7551. Students experiencing emergent symptoms (severe shortness of breath, passing out, severe chest pain, etc.) should call 911 immediately.

Students should send a message through the Student Health Portal to the COVID Assessment Provider if their symptoms are worsening or they have any non-urgent medical questions. If they have an urgent concern, they should call Student Health Services at 404-727-7551 and press “0” to speak to the front office personnel, who will transfer them to the triage nurse. After hours and on weekends, this number will connect them to the medical call center.

If at any time you experience emergent symptoms such as severe shortness of breath, passing out, severe chest pain, etc., immediately call Emory Police at 404-727-6111.

Student Health Services will provide medical support and monitoring for all COVID-19-positive or presumed positive patients in isolation regardless of whether they live on or off-campus. Students will receive a daily symptom survey via text message. Students should fill out the survey every day especially if they want the provider to call them on that day.


If you are required to isolate or quarantine ECCH, a contact tracer and an Isolation and Quarantine (I/Q) coordinator is assigned to your case.


For students who are isolating in place, reach an I/Q coordinator by emailing


Students living off-campus will have access to an I/Q coordinator who will offer support and guidance. They will send information upon your entry into isolation or quarantine.

With your permission, your I/Q coordinator will fill out a form to notify the appropriate academic liaison of your situation. You will review the form with an academic liaison to clarify and accurately communicate the support needed and information to be shared with professors.

Counseling and Psychological Services (CAPS):

  • Crisis Consultations with a CAPS clinician: Monday - Friday 8:30 a.m. - 3:30 p.m. To access, call 404-727-7450 and ask to speak with an on-call provider.
  • Drop-In Workshops and Skills Groups: Login at
  • Let's Talk Drop-In Consultation Services (for graduate and professional students): Sign up for a telehealth consultation time here.

To learn more about other virtual workshops and I/Q resources provided by CAPS please visit the CAPS website.

TimelyCare: Emory University has partnered with TimelyCare to offer free, 24/7 virtual telehealth counseling and TalkNow visits for all our students. You have a choice to speak with a psychologist or therapist about any concerns or issues you may be experiencing. As always, Student Health Services is available to manage your medical concerns. To set up an account or access care, login at

Campus Life and student organizations host many online programs throughout the semester to allow students an opportunity to engage with the community. If you are interested in participating in any such program please visit The Hub.

Wellness Coaching is a program hosted by Campus Life that offers wellness coaching and support for navigating concerns, challenges, and life transitions as well as staying motivated, productive, and on a schedule. To register for Wellness Coaching please click here.

The Office of Spiritual and Religious Life is available to offer support, guidance, and tools to students in order to make meaning out of this difficult experience.

Because many courses are currently online or taped to view asynchronously, you should still be able to engage with your classes and professors as you would otherwise if you feel well enough to do so. Whenever you are not attending class, we recommend you follow your daily routine as much as possible.

Make or schedule time for completing out-of-class work, exercising, engaging in hobbies, connecting with friends and family, or anything else you would do outside of quarantine/isolation.

Additionally, CAPS often hosts workshops focused on skills that can help with motivation. Emory College of Arts and Sciences also provides academic support services that you may access. Of course, you may also talk to your academic advisor for support and guidance.


If you are on a meal plan, upon entry into I/Q you will receive a link to a meal form where you can state your preferences i.e. vegetarian, kosher, etc. You must complete this form immediately in order for staff to be able to accommodate any dietary needs or restrictions.

Meals will be available for grab-and-go in designated locations across campus, which include: Eagle Parking Deck (between Raoul and Eagle Halls), Woodruff Residential Center (Room 348), and Clairmont Campus Clocktower Commons (in Building B).

If you are not on a meal plan, consider a food-delivery service (such as Instacart or Uber Eats), getting take-out delivered, or calling a friend to drop off food at your residence hall. For students who are unable to access food based on your situation, please speak to your isolation coordinator to connect you with the appropriate resources.


Upon entry into I/Q, students will receive an email that includes a meal form link. You must complete this form immediately in order for staff to be able to accommodate any dietary needs or restrictions.

Meals will be dropped off outside your door during the following times:

Breakfast: 8-9 a.m. | Lunch: 11-Noon | Dinner: 6-7 p.m.

Reference the Isolating in ECCH Guide for more information.


If a student lives alone off campus, they should look for contactless delivery options for groceries or meals. They should not meet delivery drivers to receive the deliveries and should instead instruct them to leave the delivery outside the home to be picked up after the delivery driver has left or is greater than 6 feet away. Many grocery stores and restaurants are offering this service.

Students who are unable to access the necessary food should speak to their Isolation Coordinator to connect them with the appropriate resources.

You should NOT go out to pick up food or groceries. A family member or friend can drop off items but should not come inside the home nor should the student go out to meet them.

For students who share housing, ask your housemates to help deliver meals or food to outside your room. Avoid being in the same living spaces as your housemates as much as possible.

Many pharmacies will deliver your prescriptions and other supplies to your home. Here are links to several pharmacies that offer this service:

This is a challenging situation and one we know will occur. Unfortunately, since most people are contagious two days prior to becoming symptomatic, it is likely you have been significantly exposed already. That is why it is critical that you receive the booster, which improves your changes of not becoming infected. We will provide cleaning supplies and well-fitted masks for you to support your health. If possible, the person who is negative may stay with a friend.

You MUST wear a well-fitted mask at all times except when you are in the shower, brushing your teeth, or eating. This includes when you are sleeping, as tolerated. Use hand sanitizer regularly entering and exiting your room. Wipe down high-touch areas in your room as often as possible.

Wear a well-fitted mask at all times except when you are in the shower, brushing your teeth, or eating. Use hand sanitizer often and wipe down high-touch areas in your room as often as possible.


Students in isolation are only allowed to go outside to pick up meals or deliveries at the entrance of their residence halls. You should wear a well-fitted mask at all times.


A scheduled recreation time may be available for students in quarantine and possibly in isolation depending on their level of symptoms at different time blocks per day depending on weather, and staff availability. Students with conflicts during this time should contact the Isolation/Quarantine (I/Q) Coordinator to make other arrangements. Otherwise, students in quarantine or isolation must remain in their hotel room for the duration of their stay at ECCH, except for scheduled appointments at SHS or other arrangements made with the I/Q Coordinator.

Students must wear a face mask, observe physical distancing, and remain in the recreation area during this time. At the end of the recreation period, students will be escorted back to their respective rooms. Students who violate recreation guidelines may forfeit the opportunity to take part in daily recreation.


Students in isolation should not risk others’ exposure by leaving their residence. Limit contact with others as much as possible, wear a form-fitting face mask, and disinfect high touch surfaces as often as possible.

If you are transferred to the Emory Conference Center Hotel for quarantine or isolation, please get to know the hotel staff who are available to support you by doing errands such as providing transportation or bringing your delivery service and packages to your door.

Please reference the I/Q at ECCH Guide for more details.

We've checked with our public health experts to ensure an optimal approach to the academic, emotional, and overall health care of our students in isolation and quarantine (I/Q).

We’ve learned much since the start of this pandemic. For example, although placing two students together in each I/Q unit may present new challenges, the university believes it will also help mitigate the loneliness and isolation that some students may otherwise experience. Of course, COVID positive students are placed with other COVID positive students.

Furthermore, it is imperative that we have all our students on one site, and the Emory Conference Center and Hotel (ECCH) is an optimal location as it sits next to Emory Student Health Services. It is also close to the center of campus.

Please complete a Student of Concern referral form and our Case Management team will reach out.


Per current CDC isolation guidelines, a student may be released from isolation after at least 5 days (day 0 being the first day of symptoms or positive test) if they are asymptomatic, or their symptoms have significantly improved and are fever free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medication. Students are released the day after they are cleared from isolation by a clinical provider. No testing is required to be released from isolation.

Different criteria apply for Emory Healthcare employees, health sciences students, and may vary based on the level of illness or vaccination status. Some students may be required to isolate for 10 days depending on their individual circumstance.

Students who are up to date on their vaccinations (have received both primary series and booster) do not need to quarantine but must take a saliva screening test on day 5 after initial contact. They must also wear a well-fitted mask at all times.

Students who are not up to date on their vaccinations (unvaccinated or have not completed the primary series and booster) must quarantine and get a saliva screening test on day 5. If the test is negative and you show no active symptoms, you may return to on-campus activities after day 5 or 6 when the test is resulted (subject to change based on CDC guidance) and officially exit on day 10.

Regardless of vaccination status, it is recommended that people test on day 0 (upon entry into quarantine.)

The most recent CDC guidelines recommend an isolation period of at least 10 days and possibly up to 20 days for those who are immunocompromised and/or severely ill as they may not clear the virus as quickly.

According to Emory Healthcare guidelines, health sciences students may test on day 5 with an antigen test (at-home test is acceptable). If the test result is negative and the student has no symptoms, they may return to clinical work on day 6 following the required masking protocols.

If the antigen test is positive, the student must continue isolation through day 7 and will be released on day 8. Students are released from isolation if they are fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medications and their symptoms have significantly improved. Clinical students must always put the health and safety of their patients first and notify their program directors.

Isolation protocols may vary based on and individuals vaccination status with the primary series or the booster.

Student Health Services

Emory University Student Health Services (EUSHS) provides outpatient care for enrolled Emory students with a valid Emory ID card. International student's spouses, Domestic Partners and unmarried children over 18 years of age are also eligible for primary medical care if they are currently enrolled in the Emory/Aetna Student Health Insurance Plan.

Phone Number


Contact Us


1525 Clifton Road
Atlanta, Georgia 30322

Hours and Location/Directions

Patient Portal

Schedule appointments, request prescription refills, send secure emails and more.