Health Protocols

The University of Louisville has responded to the pandemic by implementing multiple protocols and procedures to keep students, faculty and staff safe and healthy on campus.





Health and safety protocols

Update:  UofL has established the following health and safety protocols for all university members to follow while on any university campus. Additionally, all university members are expected to stay in compliance with state and federal safety guidelines.

    1. Wear a mask and avoid touching your face.*
    2. Practice physical distancing where appropriate.
    3. Cover your cough or sneeze with your elbow or a tissue then throw that tissue in the trash.
    4. Disinfect used surfaces and frequently touched objects.
    5. Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.
    6. Use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol if soap and water are not readily available.
    7. Stay home if you are feeling sick and avoid close contact with people who are sick.
*Masks are only required in clinical settings. 

If you are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19, you should:
    • Stay at home.
    • Notify Campus Health at 502-852-6479   Campus Health will provide students, faculty and staff guidance on isolation and testing.
    • Contact your medical provider.
    • If you are an employee, notify your supervisor.

Even if you decide to seek care from your own medical provider, or test positive at an at-home test, be sure to inform Campus Health so the university can effectively track COVID-19 cases and ensure proper quarantine or isolation procedures for our campus community.

Additional information for admissions visitors

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Campus procedures

Masks are optional except in clinical spaces on campus.  

Training videos, hosted on our Safe Colleges training module platform, will be emailed to all university members. The training videos will cover university actions and individual responsibilities for a safe spring semester. 

Physical Plant will conduct cleaning, enhanced cleaning and disinfection practices, in accordance with CDC guidelines, of frequently occupied spaces and frequently touched surfaces. 

Events and meetings on campus are encouraged to provide virtual attendance options when possible. Event organizers should review the UofL Department and Student Organization Event Approval Guidelines.

Travel guidelines are located in the Travel Guidelines section of this site's homepage. 

More Information

Operations Support Documents

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Testing program

Symptomatic Testing Program 

If you are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID please contact either Campus Health Center to schedule symptomatic testing and/or evaluation.   

Cardinal Station Health Center (Main Campus)   852-6479

HSC Campus Health Center  852-6446 

What to bring and expect at testing appointments

Bring your current university ID and your medical insurance card to your testing appointment. If you do not have medical insurance, be prepared to provide your social security number to testing officials. Be sure to wear a mask upon arrival to the testing sites and practice physical distancing while waiting. Please exit the testing site immediately following your test. Your results will be emailed or texted to you within three business days. If you test positive for COVID-19, you will receive a call. There is no out-of-pocket cost for students, faculty or staff.*

*Employees who are on a UofL Health plan and utilize the on-campus COVID-19 testing through Bluewater may have received an Explanation of Benefits from Anthem indicating they owe something for their test. If you receive this, please disregard it. Any outstanding balance due will be handled between Anthem and Bluewater. Also, please remember to present your Anthem card at your testing appointment.

Testing types
There are three basic types of COVID-19 testing: molecular, antigen and antibody testing. These tests are not interchangeable.

    • Molecular (also known PCR, RT-PCR, genetic) testing is a diagnostic test that detects genetic material of the virus and can continue detecting it for weeks to months following an initial infection. UofL's testing vendor, Bluewater Lab, conducts molecular testing for all university members who are asymptomatic (not experiencing symptoms of COVID-19).
    • Antigen testing is a diagnostic test that determines if viral coat proteins are present, which is associated with an active coronavirus infection. Antigen testing will only confirm you are positive for COVID-19 if you are currently shedding the virus.  Campus Health Services provides antigen testing to rapidly test symptomatic university members. After an initial infection, antigen testing will only remain positive for about a week.
    • Antibody testing shows if you’ve been infected in the past. Campus Health Services sends antibody testing to their reference lab on a case-by-case basis.

It is important to note you can test positive by one type of testing (such as molecular) and test negative by another type (such as antigen). Discrepancies between test results do not mean your test was performed incorrectly or another test is more accurate. If you have previously had COVID-19, you can continue shedding very low levels of coronavirus genetic material which can be detected through molecular testing for months following your initial infection's active period. This does not mean that you are infectious or capable of transmitting the virus. Per the CDC, these low levels of detectable genetic material have not been associated with the production of functional virus; therefore, those individuals are not considered infectious. An antigen test will only confirm you are positive for COVID-19 if you are currently shedding the virus. After contracting COVID-19, an antigen test will not remain positive for months the way a molecular test will.

Take a look at this FDA testing guide to learn more about the three different forms of basic COVID-19 testingFor more details on UofL's testing program, read the Testing and Tracing FAQs.

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Get Vaccinated

Effective March 1, 2022 Campus Health Services will move COVID vaccination back into the Health Centers due to reduced demand for the vaccine.  Having an appointment greatly expediates the process, so we STRONGLY urge you to do so. See below for quick and easy instructions to make an appointment.   

Remember, the COVID-19 vaccines available in the U.S. are safe and effective. They are one of our greatest tools for fighting the pandemic. COVID-19 vaccination is not required, but it is strongly encouraged in order to keep our campus safe and prevent the spread of COVID-19.  For more details on the vaccine, read UofL Health's Vaccine FAQ document and the university's COVID-19 Vaccine FAQs.  If you have additional questions regarding COVID vaccines, please call Campus Health Services at 852-6479.   

For Instructions on how schedule a COVID vaccine appointment: 

  1. Go to
  2. Click the “Student, Staff and Faculty” button at the top of the page.
  3. Microsoft login screen will open.  Sign using your ULINK and associated password
  4. “Stay Signed In” screen will appear and click No.
  5. Confirm your identity by entering your date of birth and click proceed.
  6. You should now be on the main page of the Campus Health Patient Portal.
  7. To schedule an appointment, click on View, Check-in or Book an Appointment.
  8. Select the Covid Vaccine and THEN select which specific vaccine you need.  Click Continue
  9. Enter a Callback number
  10. Confirm, update or provide Race/Ethnicity information required for epidemiological reporting and click CONTINUE
  11. Enter or update and confirm you address for epidemiological reporting and click CONTINUE
  12. Sign the Consent form (Note: you only need to answer questions regarding the specific vaccine you are going to receive.   Scroll to the bottom of the screen to complete your signature)
  13. Select Appointment date and vaccination location and then click SEARCH APPOINTMENTS. 
  14. Select your desired appointment time and click CONTINUE.  
  15. Click CONFIRM if your appointment date, time and location are correct.     
  16. SAVE A COPY OF YOUR QR CODE to use at check-in by printing the document or taking a screenshot with your phone. 
  17. ALL DONE!!!!


Off-campus vaccination locations
If you prefer to get vaccinated off campus, take advantage of one of these resources to find a vaccine location near you:

Lost vaccination cards

If you've lost your vaccination card, there are resources you can use to request a replacement card.

For those who received one or both vaccines at UofL Health:
Please go to  for instructions on how to request copies of your immunizations.  

For those who received one or both vaccines from another location:
If you did not receive both vaccines from UofL Health, you can call the LouHealth hotline at 502-912-8598. You will be asked to complete a release request form. Once that form is submitted, you can have your vaccine record email to you via an encrypted email, pick it up at the health department or have it mailed to you.

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Contact tracing, isolation and quarantine

Despite the university's best efforts to institute policies and protocols for preventing the spread of the virus, we know that positive cases may inevitably arise on campus. When those cases happen, Campus Health and their team of contact tracers will intervene quickly. 

Contact tracing 

UofL's contract tracing team of dedicated university health professionals will continue to trace, notify and properly advise any individuals who may have been exposed to a positive COVID-19 case.  

All positive results from the Campus Health Centers and Bluewater are forwarded to the Contact Tracing Team for investigation.  The Tracing Team will determine who had significant contact with the case and make recommendations for quarantine.  Additional positive cases may be reported by individuals who tested positive outside of the University’s testing programs or by the Health Department.   The Contact Tracing Team can provide documentation of the quarantine period for academic purposes.  

Contact Campus Health Services if you believe you were exposed to COVID-19 at 852-6479. Campus Health and the Contact Tracing team will help determine if you were exposed and what steps to take.    

Exposure and quarantine

Exposure is now defined by the CDC as being less than 6 feet away from an infected person for a total of 15 minutes or more, regardless of masking or vaccination status. If a university member has been exposed, there are two different protocols based on vaccination status.

As of January 3, 2022, the state of Kentucky has updated guidance with regard to isolation and quarantine. Isolation refers to the actions when you have been infected with the virus, even if you don’t have symptoms. Quarantine refers to the actions taken when you may have been exposed to the virus and may or may not be infected.

If you test positive, please notify Contact Tracing via email at   or call 852-2955 for assistance.   They can help with housing and documentation for academic purposes.   If you test positive you will need to: 

  • Isolation People with COVID-19 should isolate for 10 days.  If they are asymptomatic or their symptoms are resolving (without fever for 24 hours), isolation may be shortened to 5 days followed by 5 days of wearing a mask when around others to minimize the risk of infecting people they encounter.

If you are exposed to COVID you will need to quarantine unless your are fully vaccinated AND boosted.   Specific quarantine guidelines are listed below.   

  • Quarantine People who are unvaccinated or are more than six months out from their second mRNA dose (or more than 2 months after the J&J vaccine) and not yet boosted, should quarantine for 10 days. Quarantine may be shortened to 5 days if you have no symptoms and test negative for COVID-19 on day 5.  Individuals should wear a well-fitting mask around others for an additional 5 days. Individuals who have received their booster shot do not need to quarantine following an exposure but should wear a mask for 10 days after the exposure. For all those exposed, best practice would also include a test for SARS-CoV-2 at day 5 after exposure. If symptoms occur, individuals should immediately quarantine until a negative test confirms symptoms are not attributable to COVID-19.

Campus Health and the contact tracing team consider the following factors when determining exposures and quarantine guidance:

    • Proximity (closer distance likely increases exposure risk)
    • Duration of exposure (longer exposure time likely increases exposure risk)
    • Whether the infected individual has symptoms (the period around onset of symptoms is associated with the highest levels of viral shedding)
    • If the infected person was likely to generate respiratory aerosols (e.g., was coughing, singing, shouting)
    • Other environmental factors (i.e., crowding, adequacy of ventilation, whether exposure was indoors or outdoors)
    • Whether the exposed person lives in congregate housing (e.g. university residence halls) or not
    • If the exposed person has had COVID-19 within the last 90 days

University members are not required to show proof of a negative test in order to return to campus.  Students who are residents at the university should review the Self-Isolation for Residents FAQs.

For more details, review the Quarantine, Symptoms & Sickness FAQs. 

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Health recommendations and resources

Create a support and resiliency plan. Make plans for regular check-ins with your friends, family and your support networks. If you're an employee, touch base with your supervisor and co-workers. Be honest about how you are doing. Take advantage of the following university and community resources:

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Other COVID-19 mitigation strategies

UofL tightly monitors coronavirus infection rates in the community and — if warranted due to increasing infection levels — the university will implement randomized, broad-based testing to identify, isolate and trace the virus. Additionally, wastewater from different parts of campus (e.g. residence halls) will be analyzed as an early detection system for coronavirus, followed by individual testing as indicated.

The Co-Immunity Project, a groundbreaking collaboration to track and curb COVID-19 in Kentucky, tests health care workers and the general public in Metro Louisville and is a national example for developing a COVID-19 early warning system.

UofL has numerous ongoing clinical trials and others just starting in our hospitals and clinics and around the country to block COVID-19 from infecting people, limit its replication if people are infected and help those most sickened by the disease.

Our public health experts have developed the models used to project outbreaks and make sure the university and Metro Louisville are proactive in our management of the virus.

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