Instructional Guide for Residence Life

For notification and communication of a COVID-19 positive test

How to notify and communicate a positive COVID-19 test

  • IF a student reports a positive COVID-19 test or has COVID-19 symptoms:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fever
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain or body aches
  • Sore throat
  • Loss of taste or smell (without a stuffy nose)
  • Headache
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea


  1. DIRECT: Direct student to stay in their room and contact the Emory Student Health Patient Portal or Oxford Student Health Portal and message the “COVID-19 Assessment Provider.” If urgent symptoms or questions after hours or over the weekend, the student calls Student Health Services at 404.727.7551 and presses “0” for the medical call center. 
  2. CLEAN: Once student is out of the space, Call the Emory Environmental Health and Safety office at 404.727.2888 to request a disinfection of a room and common spaces. 
  3. COMMUNICATE: In coordination with complex director communicates that a person tested positive for COVID-19 on the floor or in the residence hall (while protecting confidentiality) and to remind of the ways to slow the spread of the virus by using this template. If complex director feels it is necessary to communicate with others prior to a test result, they can do so using the illness template letter
  4. CONTACT TRACING: Emory’s Contact Tracing Unit will be in touch with members of the community who are identified as “close contacts”;
  5. I/Q: Initiate Isolation/Quarantine housing protocol, in consultation with Student Health Services and Emory isolation/quarantine coordinators; and
  6. PROMOTE: Healthy behaviors (list below) to reduce disease transmission in our communities.  
  • Health information is protected; do not disclose names or other identifiers.

Stay Safe Reminders

Stay home if you have fever or are not feeling well

Avoid large gatherings

Practice physical distancing

Wear appropriate face coverings

Practice good hand hygiene

Clean and disinfect your space and personal items


Close Contact

Within 6 feet of a COVID-19 positive person for 15 minutes or longer (rules for health care personnel differ if wearing PPE)


Separates those who have been exposed to COVID-19 positive individual and equals date of last close contact, plus 14 days


Separates those who are confirmed COVID-19 positive and equals 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared and at least 24 hours since last fever without fever-reducing medications; and 10 days have passed since date of positive COVID-19 test for asymptomatic individuals.

Important Contacts

Emory Healthcare COVID-19 Information and Nurses Line

  • 404.71.COVID (404.712.6843)

Emory Environmental Health and Safety Office

  • 404.727.2888

Student Health Services

  • Atlanta Campus: 404.727.7551
  • Oxford Campus: 770.784.8376