Infectious Diseases Policies and Procedures

This website contains important information all residents living on-campus at UAA must understand and abide by for the safety of our community. These measures have been put into place to protect our residents from the dangers presented by infectious diseases in a congregate housing setting. By working together, we can keep each other safe and ensure continued access to education.

These policies are in place as of September 2022

Health Disclosure Policy

In an effort to keep our community safe, residents are required to notify the Student Health and Counseling Center (SHCC) or the Department of Life of the following circumstances:

  • Positive Case: A resident tests positive for any infectious disease for which the federal, state or local government requires isolation or quarantine, regardless of vaccination status. Notifications of positive test results should be done immediately.
  • Expore: A resident has been exposed to an infectious disease for which the government requires isolation or quarantine. Notifications of exposures should be done within 6 hours of the exposure
  • Symptomatic: A resident has developed symptoms consistent with an infectious disease for which the government requires isolation or quarantine. Notifications regarding the development of symptoms should be done within 12 hours of the onset of symptoms.

In these circumstances, residents are required to follow the guidance of SHCC professionals, Residence Life professionals and public health officials regarding isolation, quarantine, testing, etc. 

A resident who is exposed to an individual who is experiencing symptoms consistent with an infectious disease for which the government requires isolation or quarantine is not required to notify SHCC or Residence Life, but they are encouraged to do so. Residents in these circumstances should minimize their interactions with others and monitor their health for the development of symptoms.

Note: The definition of “exposure” varies depending on the infectious disease. Consult with an SHCC professional or public health official to determine if you were exposed to an infectious disease.

During business hours, residents should contact the SHCC if they fall into any of these categories. Residents can contact SHCC at 907-786-4040. SHCC will then notify Residence Life to coordinate the quarantine or isolation of the student, if needed. Outside of business hours, residents should contact the RA-On-Duty for their area. Note: SHCC is likely required to notify public health officials if a positive test result for an infectious disease that requires isolation or quarantine by the government.

Residents are encouraged to contact the SHCC (907-786-4040), Environmental Health & Safety (907-786-1300) or Residence Life (907-751-7202) if they have any questions or want to consult about individual cases. Given the unpredictable nature of infectious diseases, guidance from medical professionals and public health may rapidly change, and we are here to assist you in understanding the policies and procedures that apply to your specific circumstances.

Policies and Procedures for Current Outbreaks

COVID-19 

The following policies and procedures are specific to the COVID-19 pandemic. Requirements may vary depending on your specific circumstances. Consult with Residence Life, SHCC and/or public health officials for more information.

Isolation

Residents who test positive for COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status.

  • What am I allowed to do during isolation?
    • Residents who choose to complete their isolation period on campus will be moved to an isolation suite or apartment and must stay in their assigned space, going out only for emergency medical care, and using contact-free delivery methods to obtain all necessary household goods and supplies. Residents who need to leave their apartment or residence hall room for emergency medical care should notify Residence Life whenever possible prior to exiting and should wear a mask at all times. 
    • Residents who choose to complete their isolation period off campus will have access to their assigned residence removed and are not permitted to enter any University of Alaska facility during this time.
    • Residents completing their isolation in a residence hall may NOT retrieve household goods or supplies in the arctic entryway of their building. 
    • Residents with meal plans may NOT enter the dining hall to retrieve meals. Residents will be provided with information on meal delivery when they enter isolation.
    • Attending in-person classes is NOT permitted.
  • When will I be released from isolation?
    • In general, isolation will last up to ten days with day zero counting as either: 
      • Asymptomatic: the day the student had their test administered that came back with a positive result, or
      • Symptomatic: the date of the onset of symptoms (not to exceed 5 days from the date of the positive test). 
    • On day six, residents in isolation have the option to contact the Student Health and Counseling Center (SHCC) to schedule a COVID-19 antigen test (please note that a molecular test should not be used as they are likely to come back positive weeks or months after an individual is no longer contagious). The resident can either schedule an in-person test or a Zoom meeting where the resident will be monitored by a professional staff member to ensure the test was administered properly.
      • Residents are encouraged to schedule their appointment with the SHCC approximately 24 hours ahead of time if their symptoms are improving and it has been 24 hours since their last fever without the use of a fever reducing medication. 
      • If the resident’s test eligibility date falls on the weekend or a University holiday, the resident can call the RA-On-Duty for their area to connect with a professional staff member to schedule a Zoom meeting.
      • If the test comes back positive, the student may repeat the same process on day eight of isolation. If the second test is still positive, the student must isolate for an additional 2 days for a total of ten days or 24 hours after their last fever without the use of a fever reducing medication (whichever is the longer of the two options).
      • If the test comes back negative, the resident is permitted to end their isolation. The resident is strongly encouraged to continue to wear a mask around others and in any indoor space if they end their isolation earlier than 10 days. Follow the Interaction Minimization guidance below anytime they end Isolation sooner than the full 10 Day period.

Interaction Minimization

  • Symptomatic: Residents who are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 should wear a high-quality mask and avoid all contact with other people. Residents are permitted to stay in their assigned suite or apartment, but should avoid common areas when their roommates or guests are present in the space. Residents should not attend in-person classes. Residents are permitted to retrieve to-go meals from the dining hall to eat in the bedroom of their suite or apartment.
    • Residents should get tested as quickly as possible. Residents can call Residence Life to have a home test kit delivered to them. Residents are permitted to leave campus to seek a molecular-based test. 
  • Exposed (Unvaccinated): Unvaccinated residents who are exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 should minimize their interactions with others and wear a high-quality mask for 10 days following the exposure. On day 6, residents should get a molecular-based test. If at any point the resident develops symptoms, they should follow the guidance above. Exposure is defined by the CDC as being within six feet of an infected person for at least 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, regardless of whether the contact occurred indoors or outside, or if masks were worn.
  • Exposed (Vaccinated): Residents who are fully vaccinated and are exposed to someone who is experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19:
    • Minimize their interactions with others to the best of their ability
    • Wear a mask in indoor areas and around others 
    • Monitor their health for signs of symptoms consistent with COVID-19 

Vaccinations

The University of Alaska Anchorage does not require students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 in order to live in student housing. However, residents are strongly encouraged to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19, in consultation with a medical professional and according to guidance from public health officials. Vaccinations have been identified as the most effective strategy in stopping the spread of the virus. Being vaccinated may also reduce the amount of time required or recommended for Interaction Minimization following an exposure. Students have access to the vaccine on-campus through the Student Health & Counseling Center and can contact their office to schedule an appointment. For more information about immunization requirements for residents, please visit the Residence Life Immunizations website. 

Testing

Residence Life reserves the right to implement testing requirements for residents should conditions related to the pandemic worsen. Decisions regarding required testing will be made in consultation with medical professionals and public health officials. Testing requirements can vary in scope depending on the circumstances leading to the requirement being put in place (e.g. community-wide testing, a single building, a suite or apartment or even required testing for an individual). Residence Life reserves the right to determine when an individual is experiencing symptoms consistent enough with COVID-19 to require that they either receive a molecular-based test or minimize their interactions according to the Residence Life guidelines. If implemented, residents will be given as much notice as possible of any testing requirements, as well as detailed instructions on next steps while waiting for results.

Home Testing Kits

UAA has a number of antigen-based home COVID-19 testing kits that may be available to residents on a first-come, first-served basis. The primary purpose of the home testing kits is to give members of the UAA community easy access to COVID-19 testing if they are experiencing any symptoms related to the virus. While not as accurate as a molecular test, the home testing kits are generally accurate in detecting COVID-19 positive cases if the individual is experiencing symptoms. Having this information as soon as possible can help stop the spread of COVID-19 early in its cycle. 

The Student Health & Counseling Center is available to provide testing resources and guidance, and can be contacted at 907-786-4040, or via email at uaa_studenthealth@alaska.edu.


Monkeypox  

The following policies and procedures are specific to monkeypox. Requirements may vary depending on your specific circumstances. Consult with Residence Life, SHCC and/or public health officials for more information. 

Isolation

Residents who test positive for Monkeypox, regardless of vaccination status.

  • What am I allowed to do during isolation?
    • Residents who choose to complete their isolation period on campus will be moved to an isolation suite or apartment and must stay in their assigned space, going out only for emergency medical care, and using contact-free delivery methods to obtain all necessary household goods and supplies. Residents who need to leave their apartment or residence hall room for emergency medical care should notify Residence Life whenever possible prior to exiting. 
    • Residents who choose to complete their isolation period off campus will have access to their assigned residence removed and are not permitted to enter any University of Alaska facility during this time.
    • Residents completing their isolation in a residence hall may NOT retrieve household goods or supplies in the arctic entryway of their building. 
    • Residents with meal plans may NOT enter the dining hall to retrieve meals. Residents will be provided with information on meal delivery when they enter isolation.
    • Attending in-person classes is NOT permitted.
  • When will I be released from isolation?
    • Isolation lasts 2-4 weeks until the rash has healed, all scabs have fallen off, and a fresh layer of skin has formed.

Interaction Minimization

  • Residents who have symptoms consistent with monkeypox, including development of a rash. 
  • Residents who are exposed to someone who has tested positive for monkeypox or an animal infected with monkeypox.
  • What am I allowed to do during interaction minimization?
    • Minimize their interactions with others to the best of their ability
    • For residents who develop a rash, have their rash examined by a medical provider and get tested as quickly as possible in consultation with a medical provider
    • For exposures, monitor their health for signs of symptoms consistent with monkeypox
  • When will I be released from interaction minimization?
    • Residents who have been exposed should minimize their interactions for approximately 3 weeks
    • Residents who develop a rash can end their interaction minimization period once the rash has been examined by a medical professional and determined not to be monkeypox or test results are negative
    • Residents who develop other signs or symptoms should minimize their interactions for five days