Housing > Communicable Diseases Housing Information
We continue to comply with all guidelines from the university, State of Illinois, City of Chicago, and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). This may include, but not limited to wearing face masks in public areas, encouraging frequent hand washing, placing hand sanitizing stations throughout our halls, social distancing, and extra cleaning of all of our buildings on campus. Face masks are recommended, but NOT required on campus. Wearing a mask is a personal choice and the DePaul community supports your decision to continue wearing a mask if you so choose. For more information, including the current face mask policy, visit the DePaul University COVID-19 Updates and Guidance FAQs. Free N95 masks: N95 respirators are available for free at a variety of pharmacies across the country. Visit the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website and enter your zip code for a list of available locations.
DePaul is committed to the health and safety of all of our students and those living in close quarters on campus are potentially at a higher risk of COVID-19 exposure or contraction. As a result, all students living on campus, both in Lincoln Park and University Center downtown, are expected to be vaccinated or have an approved exemption from the university. This vaccination requirement includes the first booster shot as well.
As with all immunizations, DePaul will consider requests for medical and religious exemptions on a case-by-case basis, but students living on campus should understand the importance of being vaccinated for COVID-19.
You must get tested via a testing center or an at-home rapid test. Testing is the only way to confirm your symptoms are related to COVID-19.
On-campus PCR testing is not available during the 2022-23 academic year, but you are welcome to pick up a rapid test from the Office of Health Promotion & Wellness (Lincoln Park Campus) or Student Affairs Office (Loop Campus). For more information, visit the COVID-19 Testing webpage.
Reporting a COVID-19 positive case is no longer a requirement at DePaul due to updated guidance from the CDC. We recommend that on-campus residents who test positive for COVID-19 follow an isolation in place process as described in our Lincoln Park Communicable Diseases Guide and University Center (Loop) Communicable Diseases Guide. This guide will walk you through the suggested guidelines that should be followed for students who test positive. Residents may stop isolating in place on the 5th day after testing positive, unless the resident is still symptomatic or has a fever. To determine "day 0" of their minimum 5-day isolation, residents may refer to the CDC's Isolation and Precautions for People with COVID-19 webpage.
There is no scenario where reporting your COVID status is required.
Residents who test positive for COVID-19 should follow the isolation in place process, which means: • Residents must isolate in their permanent unit for 5 days and should not leave their unit unless they need to visit a healthcare provider, use the bathroom, pick up meals from the front desk or Lincoln Park Student Center, retrieve urgent mail and packages from the Student Mail Center, dispose of trash and recycling, or exit in the event of a fire alarm or emergency evacuation. When a resident is outside of their unit, they must wear an N95, KN95, or other medical-grade mask. • Masks are not required while sleeping, but residents sharing a bedroom should attempt to socially distance as much as possible. • Meals from on-campus dining locations will not be delivered when a resident isolates in place. However, residents may use the Transact mobile app to order food from Blue Demon Dining Hall and other on-campus restaurants for pick up. Residents may also opt for food delivery from online services, such as DoorDash, GrubHub, Amazon Fresh, etc. Again, residents who are COVID-19 positive must be fully masked when picking up their food from the Lincoln Park Student Center or front desk of their residential building. • When isolating in place, residents should NOT accept visitors, except those who are briefly visiting to drop off food, mail, or homework assignments.• A resident may stop isolating in place after 5 days, IF they have improved symptoms and are fever free for 24 hours or are fever-free over the 5-day isolation period. Presenting proof of a negative COVID test to contact tracers is no longer required. Residents must also wear a mask immediately after isolation for an additional 5 days. • A resident must continue isolating in place after 5 days, IF they still have a weakened immune system or were extremely sick during their 5-day isolation period. They should wait to end their isolation until they are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication and their other symptoms have improved. As soon as their isolation has ended, they must wear a mask for an additional 5 days. Residents who are not comfortable with isolating in their unit may choose to isolate in place somewhere off campus or in a designated apartment building adjacent to campus. This building is referred to as short-term housing; it can be used for COVID-positive students if they have symptoms that are serious but not serious enough to be hospitalized.The above instructions may vary for University Center (Loop) residents. If you are a resident living in University Center, please refer to the University Center (Loop) Communicable Diseases Guide.
Roommates who share a unit with a resident who tested positive for COVID-19 are already considered a “close contact.” However, quarantine is not a requirement for those who are up to date with their COVID vaccinations. It is also important for close contacts to wear a mask outside of their unit for at least 10 days (starting on the date they were last exposed to the COVID-positive resident).
If a roommate (close contact) is asymptomatic or has a negative COVID test result, they should:
• Self-monitor for symptoms.
• Continue wearing a medical-grade mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19 for 10 days.
• Wash hands frequently for at least 20 seconds each time.
• Disinfect any shared spaces, including bathroom (if in a suite-style unit or on-campus apartment).
If a roommate (close contact) is experiencing symptoms, they must:
• Take a COVID-19 test immediately. Getting tested for COVID-19 will help determine if isolation in place is needed.
Our staff understands that some roommates may be immunocompromised and want to be relocated (for up to 5 days). In this case, roommates may contact their Residence Director (RD). All residents must note that short-term housing is NOT offered to suitemates in residence halls or roommates in an on-campus apartment who do not share a bedroom with the COVID-positive resident.
Currently, we are following our regular visitor policies. You can check the Visitor Policies webpage for the latest update.
Per the Centers of Disease Control & Prevention (CDC): “Monkeypox is a rare disease caused by infection with the monkeypox virus. Monkeypox virus is part of the same family of viruses as variola virus, the virus that causes smallpox. Monkeypox symptoms are similar to smallpox symptoms, but milder, and monkeypox is rarely fatal. Monkeypox is not related to chickenpox.”
Monkeypox symptoms can include:
• Rash (typically located near genitals and could be found on other areas like hands, feet, face, etc.) • Pimples or blisters and are painful or itchy • Fever • Chills • Swollen lymph nodes • Exhaustion • Muscle aches and back pain • Headache • Flu-like symptoms such as sore throat, nasal congestion, or cough
The above symptoms can last anywhere from two (2) to four (4) weeks.
• Those exposed to someone with monkeypox (MPV) or who have a rash they think might be MPV, should contact their healthcare provider and get tested as soon as possible. • Those with a suspicious rash should stay away from others, cover all of the lesions, and wear a mask until they can see their health care provider. • Wash hands with soap and water or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer, especially before eating or touching one’s face and after using the bathroom. • Avoid direct, skin-to-skin contact with people who have MPV lesions or rashes that look like they may be MPV. • Talk to the people with whom you have come in direct contact, including intimate and sexual contact, about their general health and any other recent rashes or sores. • Avoid contact with any objects, fabrics or materials, such as bedding, clothing and towels, that have been in contact with an infected person.
At this time, Housing will look to move students to short-term housing if they test positive for monkeypox. Since the duration of monkeypox is a bit longer, short-term housing is the best option and students in this situation will receive food delivery. For more information, review the Lincoln Park Communicable Diseases Guide or University Center (Loop) Communicable Diseases Guide, depending on your resident status.
The Department of Housing, Dining & Student Centers and Department of Residential Education have set aside units for students in need of short-term housing. These are the only cases when a short-term housing unit will be occupied:
• Residents who test positive for COVID-19 and have serious symptoms • Roommates of a COVID-positive resident with an approved request • Residents who test positive for monkeypox (MPV) or other infectious disease classified as a public health emergency • Residents living in a unit that requires major repairs
The process to request short-term housing requires a resident to:
Step 1: Contact either...
• Your building Residence Director (RD), or• The Residence Director On Duty via Public Safety
Step 2: Await approval for short-term housing from the Residence Director On Duty
Spaces in short-term housing are limited, not guaranteed. If a resident has been approved for short-term housing, they need to prepare and pack the essentials before they are transferred to a temporary unit. For the short-term housing packing list and other resources, please review the Lincoln Park Communicable Diseases Guide or University Center (Loop) Communicable Diseases Guide for on-campus residents.