Isolation Planning Guide for Students

When a student tests positive for COVID-19, they will be instructed to isolate for a period of time consistent with the CDC guidelines and their symptoms. However, because there is typically little time to prepare for isolation when instructed to do so, Goucher College developed this planning guide to help students prepare to isolate.

What is Isolation?

Isolation is the separation of someone ill with and/or who has tested positive for COVID-19 from those who are not.

Individuals who test positive for COVID-19 are isolated for a period determined by the Student Health Center and local health officials. Students in on-campus housing must be relocated from their residence hall room during isolation to minimize the risk of spread to peers in their hall.

Do I Need to Plan for Isolation?

Yes! All students living on campus must have an isolation plan. For students who can travel in a private vehicle and are within driving distance of their primary place of residence, your plan can be to conduct your period of isolation from the comfort of your home. For all other students, isolation space (on-campus) is available.

All students living off-campus are strongly encouraged to have an isolation plan. Goucher College does not provide isolation housing for commuter students or those who have remained in their permanent residence. Most campus support services are available virtually; for the Student Health Center and the Student Counseling Center, access to services depends on the student's current state due to licensure laws.

How To Prepare for Isolation

Communicate With Your Family/Support System

Discuss the following with your family before coming to campus:

Regarding known health and mental health factors, have you considered the impact of potential on- or off-campus isolation/quarantine on your physical and emotional wellness?

If you live within driving distance, will you return home in a private vehicle? If you are instructed to isolate, you cannot travel on any public transportation (bus, train, plane, Uber, Lyft, taxi, etc.) as you may expose others.

If someone from your family plans to pick you up from campus to take you home to isolate, how much time will they need to arrive—hours or even a day or two?

Are you able to distance yourself from others in your home to keep other family members safe?

If you cannot isolate at home, do you have an alternate location to conduct isolation?

How will you maintain your emotional and physical wellness if you quarantine/isolate on campus?

Do you have a good understanding of your health insurance policy, coverage in Maryland, and how to access care locally while at Goucher?

Supplies to Bring to Isolation

Cleaning Supplies: Pack EPA-approved disinfecting wipes to use in your living spaces before, during, and after any possible period of isolation. You will need to use these in any common areas of your residence while you are in isolation.

Self-Care Medications: Pack fever/pain reducers such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen (Motrin). Do not use multi-symptom medications in combination with these, as it can be easy to take too much. You may want lozenges for sore throats or cough medications.

Prescription Medications: Pack several days’ worth of any prescription medications you need. Speak with your provider about how you would access medications if you are in isolation.

Thermometer: Pack a digital thermometer that works under your tongue, is easy to use, and is not expensive to purchase. Make sure you have one with new batteries.

Masks: Pack multiple masks so you can wear a fresh one each day.

Comfort Food: Pack your favorite comfort snacks and drinks, along with a reusable water bottle. Although the college will ensure meals are accessible to those isolating on campus, your favorite snacks can sometimes provide comfort. Off-campus students should maintain a supply of food at home and be knowledgeable about ordering food delivery from their local grocery store.

Comfortable Clothes: Pack a few days’ worth of comfortable clothes, including two weeks’ worth of undergarments.

Hygiene Supplies: Pack towels, wash cloth, shampoo, soap, toothbrush, toothpaste, feminine products, etc.

Bed Linens: Pack sheets, pillow, and blanket as the temperature in the isolation space on campus may fluctuate.

Electronics: Phone, laptop, tablet, charging cables, etc.

Self-Care Items to Support Your Overall Well-Being: Art supplies, puzzles, crafts, playing cards, portable exercise equipment (like fitness bands, hand weights, or yoga mat), books, etc.

In addition, you should ensure your academic materials (laptop, books, etc.) should be readily accessible to be brought to you.

If you forget anything, the Campus Store will have supplies available for purchase, and the student supply closet will have some supplies for those in need.

See also:

Quarantine and Isolation Policy for Attending Class After COVID-19 (PDF)