Coronavirus: FAQ

The University of Utah is actively monitoring the worldwide spread of the respiratory illness COVID-19. The University’s COVID-19 webpage is being updated regularly, and we encourage you to check it frequently for important updates. University of Utah Health also has a helpful webpage with FAQs, practical tips about how to protect yourself from COVID-19, and more.

Frequently Asked Questions


HRE and the University of Utah is working closely with local, state, and federal public health agencies to make informed decisions. HRE follows an escalated cleaning routine every flu season which includes focused disinfecting on high touchpoint areas such as flat surfaces and door handles. Our custodial team will continue to engage in this cleaning and disinfecting schedule for the remainder of the summer semester. HRE will arrange isolation spaces for those displaying symptoms of COVID-19.

It is not uncommon to experience general uncertainty and anxiety related to COVID-19. The University Counseling Center has helpful information on coping with this anxiety available online, here.  Your Resident Director also continues to be a resource available to you. Contact information of your Resident Director and other HRE Support staff can be found online, here.

  • Residents in any of these scenarios should complete the HRE Self-Report Form  to provide us with best contact information and to alert us to the situation 
  • HRE staff will follow up with the resident to make arrangements for an isolation space, relocation, meal delivery, and support.
  • You will remain in the room and should not leave the room 
  • HRE custodial staff will arrive to clean the bathroom inside the space, if applicable 
  • Please  complete the HRE Self-Report Form to provide us with best contact information and to request meal delivery 
  • HRE staff will be in contact with you on a daily basis 
  • You should contact class instructors to let them know about their need to quarantine

“Contact” is defined by the medical community as having been within 6 feet of a person who positively tested for COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes OR having been in physical contact with that person 

  • If this is true for your situation, please complete the HRE Self-Report Form to provide us with your best contact information and to alert us of your concern. An HRE staff member will follow-up with you to learn more 
  • If quarantine is necessary, HRE will arrange relocation to a separate isolation room for the quarantine period. HRE will provide meal delivery to you. 
  • You will need to contact your class instructors to let them know about your need to quarantine.
Testing Information
  • Yes. All HRE residents are required to receive a COVID-19 test as part of their arrival process in August. COVID-19 tests will be administered on campus. After receiving the test, residents will receive a wristband. Residents must have a wristband as proof of receiving the COVID-19 test to pick up their key and move into their space. 
  • If a resident begins to experience COVID-19 symptoms or believes to have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 prior to Move-in Day, they should contact their health provider and plan to isolate or quarantine in place at home. Please do not move in if you have had an exposure to COVID-19 positive individual within 14 days prior to move-in or any flu-like symptoms on (fever, cough, sore throat, shortness of breath, loss of taste/smell, headache, etc.) on the day before moving in.
  • If a resident begins to experience COVID-19 symptoms or believes to have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 during fall semester, the resident should complete the HRE Self-Report form and pursue a COVID-19 test on their own. 

The test method being used is similar to ones used throughout the country.  The person taking the test will use one swab to swab inside your nose and then use another swab for your throat. Then the swabs will be combined and the test run.  The test uses a method called nucleic acid amplification, which detects the nucleic acid (RNA) of the virus.

This test is able to detect a very small amount of viral RNA. A positive test means the RNA of the virus was found in your specimen. ARUP Laboratories and University of Utah Healthcare feel this is a very accurate test.

Positive Result: If the test result is positive, residents will receive a phone call on their cell phone.  If there is no cell phone, they will receive an email through their UMail account.

Negative Result: If the test result is negative, students will receive an email through their Umail account.

  • The test results will be shared with HRE administrators for the purpose of isolating positive residents in isolation rooms and quarantining residents the person has been in contact with in their space.
  • All test results will be used only by personnel who are critical to the care of the resident and community.
  • After receiving a COVID-19 test on move-in day, residents must limit their contact with others until test results are back. 
    • If a positive result: You will be moved to an isolation space on campus until released by health professionals. Meal delivery and staff support will be available while isolating 
    • If a roommate tests positive: The student testing positive will likely be moved to an isolation space. The resident remaining in the room will need to quarantine in place.

A negative test means at the time you were tested you had no virus detected at the level the test could detect.  Two hours, two days, or 2 months later you could be exposed and have a positive test.  Thus it is very important that you continue to follow good handwashing,  proper face covering use, and social distancing AND if you start feeling sick, contact a healthcare provider so they can assess you and see if you need to be tested again.  Even if you are ill and have a negative test, it is best to stay away from others until all of your symptoms have gone away.  

Parents/guests are not able to be tested with the students at the pre-check in testing location.

U of U Health does not provide this service.  Please go to the state’s website.  We highly recommend that you call ahead to verify that you can be tested for this reason.

Intermountain Healthcare may provide this service at the Salt Lake Clinic Instacare located nearby the University of Utah Campus (389 South 900 East).

  • Those interested should call the Intermountain Healthcare COVID-19 hotline at 844-442-5224 no later than 4 days before their travel date to return to their home state for instructions and to order a test.
  • Test order turnaround time and results sharing may depend on current local testing demands.
Isolation and quarantine

Yes; if you have a friend or family member you prefer to stay with during your self-isolation period, you are welcome to go there. If you choose to go off-campus, please report this in the HRE Self-Report Form before leaving.

Please fill out the HRE Self-Report Form immediatley. An HRE staff member will follow up with you as soon as possible and will arrange an isolated room for you to stay in. HRE will provide you with specific instructions for moving to your new space. Please restrict your exposure to other students and areas of campus while awaiting information on your temporary room.

HRE will work with health professionals to determine when it is safe for a resident to end their self-isolation period. Generally a student who is positive will be in isolation for 10 days from the start of their symptoms and 24 hours after they no longer have a fever (without taking fever reducing medicine).   A member of the HRE staff will be in daily communication with all residents in isolation to remain updated on the status of symptoms and needs.

In HRE, all residents will be tested when arriving to campus. You will need to limit contact with others until your test results come back. You will still be able to obtain food from dining.

  • If your test result is positive, you will be relocated to an isolation space to isolate for 10-14 days.
  • If your test result is negative, there is no need to quarantine after receiving your negative results.

Yes, all residents who need to self-isolate in their HRE space are eligible for meals to be delivered from University Dining Services. Residents do not need to have a meal plan to receive meals. Residents living in HRE off-campus properties can also receive delivered meals.

HRE is prioritizing the self-isolation spaces for current HRE residents.  We are not able to accommodate off-campus students.

Please fill out the HRE Self-Report Form immediately. An HRE staff member will follow up with you as soon as possible and will talk with you about what your contact looked like and whether you need to go into a quarantine space. If so, HRE will provide you with specific instructions for moving to your new space. Please restrict your exposure to other students and areas of campus while awaiting information on your temporary room change.

If a roommate tests positive for COVID-19, they would be temporarily moved to an isolation room.  The remaining residents in the room/suite/or apartment would need to quarantine in place.  This would include filling out the HRE Self-Report Form.  HRE Staff would be in contact with you to support you while you quarantine.  This quarantine would be for 14 days from the last contact with the person.

PolicY Updates

Residents should wear a face covering anytime they are outside of their room/apartment. This includes but is not limited to:

  • Walking in the hallways of the building
  • Accessing laundry rooms
  • While using common room areas
  • While using any amenities in the PHC, Kahlert Village, Lassonde Studios, or MHC
  • A guest or visitor is defined as any person who is not contractually living in the space. Residents are prohibited from hosting guests/visitors in their space unless the guest is actively helping them move in or out. Guests include residents of other buildings/rooms, non-resident students, and any other individual. 
  • Residents may host residents from other buildings in lounge and common room areas. All guests should always be escorted by a resident of the building when accessing a common room area. We ask residents to be mindful of the risks of bringing others into the residential community by limiting the number of residents in lounges or study rooms, signage will denote the maximum occupancy of the space.
  • No overnight guests are permitted for the 2020-2021 academic year.
  • Campus dining locations will operate on to-go service
  • In-person dining seating will be physically distanced 
  • Dining Services will also offer a new mobile app system that allows students to order meals ahead of time for pick up at a variety of campus dining locations. More information will be shared in August
  • The health and well-being of our community is our top priority. Resident engagement will primarily be delivered virtually, at least for the fall. If in person engagement will take place, residents will need to wear face coverings and maintain 6 ft physical distance. 
  • Resident Advisors and other housing staff members will continue to support residential community building and learning. Virtual and physically distant engagement opportunities will support student learning with 3 learning goals: culture of belonging, collegiate success, and personal development.

Residents can cancel their 2020-2021 housing contract without penalty now until July 28. No additional penalty fees will be charged, but cancellations will forfeit their $200 reservation fee. Visit our Terminating Your Contract page for more information on how to submit a cancellation.

The HRE accounting team will notify University Income Accounting about your contract cancellation. If you previously signed up for a payment plan, University Incoming Accounting will re-balance your payment plan based on no longer living on campus. The new balance will be reflected in your remaining tuition payments. 

Utah Global

We encourage students to reach out directly to their Student Services Advisor, email, or reach out directly via pronto/cell phone (801-477-4281).

The University’s COVID-19 webpage is being updated regularly, and we encourage you to check it frequently for important University-wide updates.

Latest Updates From University of Utah