Your Questions Answered
Question: If I stop by the UC San Diego campus—to visit my office, pick up a textbook, etc.—do I still need to test on a weekly basis?
: We strongly recommend those who can work and study at home to do so remotely, and refrain from coming to campus so that we may keep the population density low. For remote employees who have an essential need to visit the campus, it is recommended that they participate in a self-administered test while they are on campus. For students who are studying remotely and visit the campus on occasion for essential activities, it is also advised that they complete a self-administered test when they arrive. Both students and employees may pick up a COVID test at one of numerous vending machines on campus
Question: If my building is associated with a positive wastewater signal, does it mean that there is definitely someone infected inside?
If your building is associated with a positive wastewater signal, it may mean that there are one or more infected individuals in the building. However, because multiple buildings can feed wastewater into a single sampler, a positive signal in a building does not necessarily mean there is someone infected inside your building. Further, in some cases individuals who have recovered from their SARS-CoV-2 infection can continue to shed virus into the wastewater for several weeks after they have recovered. These individuals who are no longer infectious can, in some circumstances, contribute to a positive wastewater signal.
If you used the restroom in a building associated with a positive wastewater signal on that day, out of an abundance of caution, you should get tested promptly. For more information on testing, visit the Testing and Screening page
. Additionally, we encourage you to remain vigilant about masking and social distancing. You do not need to quarantine or isolate until you receive your results.
Question: Why do the campus COVID-19 test vending machines have dedicated hours of operation?
: The Return to Learn Program currently has 10 vending machines in operation across the UC San Diego community, the majority open Monday-Sunday from 9 a.m. to 4 p.m. (see all vending machine locations and hours
). The machines are restocked between 8-9 a.m. by the UC San Diego Logistics Team as well as during pick-ups. Samples are picked up in the morning, early afternoon and 2 p.m.
Triton Health Ambassadors arrive for their first shift at 8:30 a.m. and they check the site, ensure hand sanitizers are functioning and sanitize tables and keypads in preparation for the 9 a.m. opening. Triton Health Ambassadors are on site to answer questions and provide support throughout the day as students, faculty and staff visit the vending machines.