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COVID-19 Updates from GSBS

Fall Term Guidelines

As we are ready to start the Fall term, please know that GSBS leadership and staff are all aware of the policies and guidelines regarding classes, events, and activities as they relate to COVID-19 procedures and precautions.

With the rise in the Delta Variant and new guidance from the CDC, state, city and University, these guidelines may be modified.  However, as of today, we should assume that the guidelines referenced here will remain in effect and GSBS is planning accordingly.  Those not on the Boston or Medford campuses need to follow their local campus/lab/organization’s guidelines.

Vaccines and Testing

All students, faculty and staff are required to show proof of vaccination or receive a medical or religious accommodation.  Those who are coming to campus on a regular basis are in the testing protocol and must be tested once per week.  Those coming to campus less than once per week must test on the days that they come to campus.  Be sure to get tested through the Tufts Testing Center as required.

Daily Health Screening Survey

Each and every day that you plan to be on campus, you are required to complete the brief Daily Health Status Survey before arriving. You may complete the health survey here  or you may open the Tufts Mobile app and click on the COVID-19 Screening icon to take it. Screening survey instructions are available. Take time to carefully consider your responses to each question and answer truthfully.

Symptoms associated with the Delta variant include the typical fever and shortness of breath associated with other circulating variants, but notably, people infected with the Delta variant frequently experience symptoms similar to and often mistaken for allergies, such as a runny or stuffy nose, headache, and scratchy or sore throat. If you have any of these symptoms, please do not come to campus and speak with your primary care physician about getting tested. If you are feeling sick for any reason, please stay home until you are feeling better and seek medical attention.

Contact Tracing, Quarantine & Isolation

Anyone testing positive for COVID-19 either through Tufts University’s routine surveillance testing or elsewhere is required to participate fully in the contact tracing process and identification of close contacts. If a contact tracer from Marathon Health is in touch with you, please cooperate fully and answer their questions to the best of your ability. Per state guidance, each individual testing positive for COVID-19 must be cleared by a medical professional to return to classes or to work. More information on contact tracing and quarantine and guidelines on isolation is available.

Unvaccinated close contacts of COVID-19 cases are required to quarantine. Vaccinated close contacts of a COVID-19 case are not required to quarantine. Regardless of vaccination status, all close contacts will be tested for COVID-19 as soon as possible after exposure, at day 4 and at day 7 after exposure. Full participation and cooperation by close contacts is expected.

Masks 

Tufts requires that all individuals, whether vaccinated or not, continue to wear masks indoors, except when alone in an office with the door closed or when eating.  Please note that the City of Boston has also reinstated their indoor mask mandate,

Classes

All classes, including Journal Clubs, Seminars, Research Reports, as well as other educational activities such as lab meetings should take place in person with a Zoom option for those who will not be on campus at that time.  While we do not want to make students come to campus, if they will not be working in a lab that day, at the same time, those already on campus should attend class in person rather than via Zoom.

Events and Activities

There will be no size limits for gatherings, and people will no longer be required to remain at least six feet apart, either inside or outdoors. Standard pre-COVID room occupancy limits will apply, including in conference rooms, classrooms, offices, and labs.  However, everyone must remain masked, including speakers.While we encourage any event with food to be outdoors, indoor food events will be permitted.  Pre-wrapped, single serving food items is not a requirement.  Additional information regarding events is available.

Eating

Please do your best to avoid lunches or breaks in large groups indoors.  Move outside if possible.  If eating with others, masks may be removed only when eating or drinking.  Breakroom etiquette signs with information designed to minimize COVID transmission risks will be posted. Please follow this guidance.

COVID-19 Travel Information

The university has updated its travel guidance for fall 2021, and the "Essential Only" Travel Policy for Tufts-related international travel remains in place. At present, personal international travel or personal or Tufts-related domestic travel is not subject to restrictions; however, you are strongly advised to take maximum precautions to protect yourself and others while traveling. Read the updated travel guidance.

More Information

These guidelines are designed to minimize disruption in our work and study while maintaining a safe environment for all.  Additional COVID-19 campus policies, requirements, and recommendations are available.

If you have questions, please email Dan Volchok.