Isolation and Quarantine

During the COVID-19 pandemic, isolation and quarantine measures are necessary to protect the public by preventing exposure to people who are ill with the virus.

Isolation is the process of separating people who are sick with COVID-19 from people who are not sick.

Quarantine is the process of separating and restricting the movement of people who were exposed to COVID-19 during the incubation period when they may become sick with the virus and infect others.

Quarantine and Isolation Requirements

  • Individuals who are symptomatic and tested for COVID-19 will be required to quarantine pending the results of their test.
  • Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 will be required to isolate for at least 5 days.
  • Individuals who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms but test negative for COVID-19 may be required to remain in quarantine.
  • Individuals who are identified as a “close contact” of a positive COVID-19 case will be required to quarantine, if not fully vaccinated for COVID-19, for 5 days while carefully monitoring symptoms for 14 days.
  • Vaccinated individuals who are identified as a “close contact” will be required to quarantine if they develop COVID-like symptoms after exposure.

‚ÄčCompliance with isolation and quarantine requirements is a condition of participation in on-campus work, residential life, and on-campus classes and activities during the pandemic.‚Äč

Student Care

Health Services will provide COVID-19 testing and medical monitoring for residential students in isolation and quarantine on campus. Arrangements for support during isolation on-campus are coordinated with campus partners such as Residence Life, Dining Services, Physical Plant, and Student Affairs. All students who are directed by Salem or a healthcare provider or public health department to isolate or quarantine must remain in isolation or quarantine until cleared by Health Services to resume regular on-campus activities.

Employee Care

Human Resources will provide information regarding Salem isolation and quarantine requirements and telework and other work-related arrangements or leave as applicable. Human Resources will direct employees to stay home and not return to campus until the applicable isolation or quarantine period has ended. All employees who are directed by Salem or a healthcare provider or public health department to isolate or quarantine must remain in isolation or quarantine until cleared by Human Resources to resume regular on-campus activities.

Fully Vaccinated for COVID-19

Pursuant to CDC guidelines, persons who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 do not have to quarantine after an exposure unless they develop COVID-19 symptoms. It is required that despite vaccination status, persons exposed to COVID-19 continue to monitor themselves for symptoms up to 14 days post exposure.  Proof of vaccination status will be required for exclusion from quarantine.

Quarantine and Isolation Housing

Residential Students

Salem will make available on-campus isolation and quarantine spaces for residential students who are unable to travel home during required isolation and quarantine periods. Residential students who are able to travel home for quarantine or isolation periods may be permitted to do so, but must first receive written permission from Health Services and Residence Life, cannot use public transportation in transit, and must disclose to their household members why they are returning home. Residential students who choose to quarantine/isolate at home must report their off-campus quarantine location and address Health Services and Residence Life prior to leaving campus. Residential students may not quarantine/isolate at the home of another student off-campus.

Commuter Students

Commuter and day students should quarantine or isolate as directed at home or at anoter off-campus location.


Employees should quarantine or isolate as directed at home or at another off-campus location. Residential staff will be permitted to quarantine or isolate on-campus as circumstances require.

Quarantine and Isolation Situational Protocols

In all of the following situations, report the need for isolation or quarantine to Salem as provided in these Guidelines and Protocols and DO NOT COME TO CAMPUS OR REPORT TO CLASS OR WORK until you have been cleared to do so by Salem. For clearance to return to work or class, students should coordinate with Health Services and employees should coordinate with Human Resources.

  1. Isolation Due to Illness

    If you have been diagnosed with COVID-19, you must remain in isolation until:

    • At least 5 days have passed since your symptoms began,
    • At least 24 hours have passed since you had a fever (without the use of fever reducing medication during), and
    • Your other symptoms have significantly improved

    If you tested positive for COVID-19 but never had any symptoms, you must isolate and not report to work until at least 5 days have passed after the date of your positive test.

  2. Quarantine Due to Exposure

    Individuals who are exempt or are not “fully vaccinated,” must quarantine after a direct exposure. If you have had “close contact” with someone who has a suspected or lab confirmed case of COVID-19, and you are not fully vaccinated for COVID-19, you must quarantine and not report to work or class on-campus for a period of up to 5 days. Individuals should obtain a COVID PCR test 5 days after exposure. Even after being tested, you must carefully monitor symptoms for a full 14 days after exposure.

    If you live with or care for someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, your quarantine period may be extended by Salem as your exposure in this situation continues until the isolation period for your housemate or dependent has concluded.

    If you subsequently develop symptoms or test positive for COVID-19 during the quarantine period, you cannot come to campus until the time period for isolation has ended.

  3. Symptomatic

    If you are exhibiting any COVID-19 symptoms listed above, you must stay home and quarantine pending further guidance from Salem Health Services or your healthcare provider. In consultation with you, Salem will determine when it is safe for you to resume regular campus activities.

  4. Other Considerations

    The directions provided in these situational protocols are subject to change at any time without notice as recommended and directed by public health officials, public health agencies, and medical experts.