If the chatbot told you…

 

A. Shelter in place for at least 10 days on campus and four days at your destination…

You’re in good company. This is what most people will be doing. The most effective way to reduce spread of the virus to family and friends is to shelter in place for 14 days. We’ve tried to make this easier on students by splitting it up into 10 days on campus, followed by safe travel, and completing the remaining four days at your destination.  

The Pittsburgh campus began sheltering in place on Nov. 9, due to a surge in cases. Regional campuses are still on track to begin sheltering in place on Nov. 12, which is 14 days before the Thanksgiving holiday.

If you will be around vulnerable individuals, we strongly advise you to wear a face covering and physically distance from everyone, including those you live with, during the full 14-day shelter-in-place period. Avoid close interactions with anyone, including your own pod or household members while still at the University (i.e. wear a face covering and physically distance from them at all times). When you reach your destination, continue to avoid close interactions with family members and loved ones until your final days of sheltering in place are complete. 

Learn more about why sheltering in place is important.

If you plan to leave campus early (i.e., before the weekend of Nov. 21-22), you should still begin sheltering in place with other students on your campus, but increase the number of days that you shelter in place once you’ve traveled safely to your destination, so that you complete the recommended 14 day shelter-in-place protocol. 

If you plan to leave late (i.e., after Nov. 21-22), you should still begin sheltering in place with other students on your campus and complete a minimum of four days of sheltering in place at your final destination.

These measures may seem strict, but they are important. Colleges and universities depopulating during this time are a generally riskier public health proposition than when students arrived on campuses at the beginning of the term.

It’s important to shelter in place for four days post-travel to mitigate the risk of shedding the virus should you become infected during travel.

If you live alone and plan to leave campus either before or after Nov. 21-22, please complete the shelter-in-place period as usual.

If you are a commuter student and you come to campus on or after its shelter-in-place period goes into effect, you must avoid all close contacts. While on campus, only interact with individuals who are wearing a face covering or maintaining at safe physical distance of at least six feet.


B. Contact SHS immediately…

Your responses suggest you have symptoms of COVID-19. Please call your campus student health service immediately to arrange to take a test.

  • Bradford: 814-362-5272
  • Greensburg: 724-836-9947
  • Johnstown: 814-269-7110
  • Pittsburgh: 412-383-1800
  • Titusville: 814-827-4455

When you are cleared to travel—per student health—revisit this tool for advice on staying safe and healthy during this transition.

 


C. You are at lower risk for spreading the virus but still need to shelter in place…

Your responses indicate that you have been infected with COVID-19 in the last three months. This means that you are at lower risk of spreading the virus, per current CDC guidance.

While our knowledge of immunity with regard to COVID-19 is still evolving, we do know that re-infection is possible. We strongly advise you to play it safe and shelter in place with the rest of the Pitt community.

If you will be around vulnerable individuals, we strongly advise you to wear a face covering and physically distance from everyone, including those you live with, during the full 14-day shelter-in-place period. Avoid close interactions with anyone, including your own pod or household members while still at the University (i.e., wear a face covering and physically distance from them at all times). When you reach your destination, continue to avoid close interactions with family members and loved ones until your final days of sheltering in place are complete.

 


D. Consult with SHS…

Because you are currently in isolation or quarantine, you must call your campus student health office for guidance.

  • Bradford: 814-362-5272
  • Greensburg: 724-836-9947
  • Johnstown: 814-269-7110
  • Pittsburgh: 412-383-1800
  • Titusville: 814-827-4455

The end of the semester is near, and we all look forward to reconnecting with our families and loved ones. However, the entire United States is in the midst of the most devastating stage of the pandemic as cases and hospitalizations are outstripping anything seen earlier in the first and second waves. Now, you are personally caught up in the pandemic as either having tested positive and isolating, or having had a close contact and quarantining. The best decision you can make now—for yourself, your family, friends, loved ones and the community in general—is to complete your isolation and quarantine periods at Pitt and ensure you are virus-free when leaving. We know staying in Oakland over the Thanksgiving holidays is a huge sacrifice, but we encourage you to do all you can to keep yourself and the community safe.

If you feel you have a compelling reason for needing to break your isolation and quarantine period to return home, it may be possible under special circumstances to allow for exceptions. Travel is a significant risk factor for infecting others and MUST NOT involve any form of public transportation, whether you are leaving isolation or quarantine. Prolonged periods in a motor vehicle with another person is potentially a risk to them—even if both of you are masked and the windows partly open for ventilation.

At your destination, you will need to create an environment that replicates your current isolation or quarantine situation at Pitt. You need your own private bedroom and bathroom, you should eat meals in your bedroom, and you should have no close contact with any family members, friends or loved ones. Vigilance in masking, distancing, and handwashing are paramount any time you leave your private room. Please make good decisions and consider what is the right choice for the greater community.

 

This guidance is for informational purposes only and should not be relied upon as medical advice nor a recommendation by the university on how to travel. The university is not responsible in any manner for the risks related to your travel. Members of the university community should make informed decisions about travel based on their individual circumstances.