COVID Resources

USI employees, students and guests/visitors to campus are asked to self-monitor and check daily for symptoms of COVID-19. Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19, or who has been exposed to someone with COVID-19, should fill out the self-reporting form, remain off campus and contact their primary care physician for evaluation. Exposure and contact tracing plans have been developed and will be implemented when needed.





Guidance for Students and Employees


action steps

Close contact steps

Jump to:

How to Self Screen / Signs and symptoms of COVID-19

If you answered YES to the Self Screen

What to do if you have COVID-19 or confirmed symptoms

What happens after submitting a Self Report form

When to return to class/work

How COVID-19 spreads

How to prevent spread

People at a higher risk

Coping with stress

How to Self Screen / Signs and Symptoms of COVID-19

People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported – ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness.

Symptoms may appear 2 to 14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fever
  • Congestion
  • Chills
  • Muscle pain
  • Sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Runny nose

This list is not all possible symptoms. Other less common symptoms have been reported, including gastrointestinal symptoms like nausea, vomiting, or diarrhea

Some people can have the infection and NEVER show ANY symptoms.

Every day all employees and students should take their temperature and ask yourself:

  • Do I have a temperature over 100 degrees today?
  • Have I had a temperature of over 100 degrees in the past 2 weeks?
  • Have I travelled anywhere in the past 14 days?
  • Have I been in contact with someone with known or suspected COVID-19 infections?
  • Do I currently have, or in the past 14 days have I had any of the following?
    • Cough
    • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Or any of these symptoms:
    • Fever
    • Chills
    • Repeated shaking with chills
    • Muscle pain
    • Headache
    • Sore throat
    • New loss of taste or smell

If you answered YES to the screening questions

REPORT that you are possibly sick with COVID:

  • Complete the Self-Report Form linked at the top of this page.
  • Employees notify Human Resources at 812-464-1990 or email
  • Students notify the Dean of Students office at 812-464-1862

Get Care

get help if sickIf you are on campus for class or work-GO HOME.

Call your health care provider for advice. Call BEFORE going in for care. You may be able to receive care by Telehealth.

Employees: COVID-19 Treatment - member cost share waived until September 13, 2020

If you do not have a health care provider, you may contact the University Health Center at 812-465-1250 to schedule an appointment.

COVID-19 Testing on Campus

On-campus COVID-19 testing is available for USI students and employees at the former Children’s Learning Center (not the University Health Center). Testing is available for USI students and employees by appointment only on Tuesday afternoons and Thursday mornings. 

Call the University Health Center (UHC) at 812-465-1250 to schedule an appointment to be tested for COVID-19.

More information

When to Seek EMERGENCY Medical Care

Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19.

If someone is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion
  • Inability to wake or stay awake
  • Bluish lips or face

*This list is not all possible symptoms. Please call your medical provider for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.

Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility: Notify the operator that you are seeking care for someone who has or may have COVID-19.

What to do if you have COVID-19 or confirmed symptoms

If you are sick with COVID-19, or think you may be sick, follow the steps below and to protect other people in your home and community.

Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas.

Get rest and stay hydrated. Take over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen, to help you feel better.

Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency.

Use ride-sharing, or taxis.

As much as possible, stay in a specific room and away from other people and pets in your home. If possible, you should use a separate bathroom. If you need to be around other people or animals in or outside of the home, wear a cloth face covering.

Symptoms of COVID-19 include fever, cough, and shortness of breath but other symptoms may be present as well. 

Trouble breathing is a more serious symptom that means you should get IMMEDIATE medical attention.

Your local health authorities may give instructions on checking your symptoms and reporting information.

What happens after you submit a Self-Report form

Persons who are ill with COVID-19 symptoms/confirmed infection will be contacted by someone from the University for additional information.

Expect to provide the following information:

  • Information about where you have been 
  • Who you have been in recent contact with 
  • Whether or not social distancing and cloth face coverings were being worn

This information is needed to determine if others may have been at risk of exposure to the ill person.

Persons who are ill, and those who may have been exposed, will be contacted by someone from USI, possibly someone from the local Health Department and/or a Contact Tracer affiliated with the Indiana State Department of Health.

Your personal information will not be shared with others. Your confidentiality will be protected.

When to return to class/work?

People with COVID-19 who have stayed home (home isolated) can be with others under the following conditions**:

I think or I know I had COVID-19 and symptoms.  

If you have not had a test to determine if you are still contagious, you can be with others after these three things have happened:

  1. You have had no fever for at least 24 hours (that is one full day of no fever without the use of medicine that reduces fevers)
  2. Other symptoms have improved (for example, when your cough or shortness of breath have improved)
  3. At least 10 days have passed since your symptoms first appeared

I tested Positive for COVID-19 but had NO Symptoms

People who DID NOT have COVID-19 symptoms, but tested positive and have stayed home (home isolated) can leave home under the following conditions**:

  1. At least 10 days have passed since the date of your first positive test
  2. you continue to have no symptoms (no cough or shortness of breath) since the test.

NOTE: if you develop symptoms, follow guidance above for people with COVID-19 symptoms.

**In all cases, follow the guidance of your doctor and local health department. The decision to stop home isolation should be made in consultation with your healthcare provider and state and local health departments. Some people, for example those with conditions that weaken their immune system might continue to shed virus even after they recover.

How COVID-19 spreads

  • Covid-19COVID-19 is thought to spread from person to person, mainly through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person talks, sings, coughs or sneezes.
  • These droplets can land in the mouths or noses of people who are nearby or possibly be inhaled into the lungs.
  • Spread is more likely when people are in close contact with one another (within about 6 feet).
  • It is important to know that persons can spread the infection up to 2 days BEFORE they have symptoms.
  • Some persons who are infected, and can spread the infection to others, never have any symptoms.

Since COVID-19 is a new disease, we are still learning about how it spreads. 

It may be possible for COVID-19 to spread in other ways, but these are not thought to be the main ways the virus spreads:

FROM TOUCHING SURFACES OR OBJECTS. It may be possible to get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it and then touching one's mouth, nose, or possibly eyes. This is not thought to be the main way the virus spreads. CDC Video: Can COVID-19 last on surfaces and in the air?

FROM ANIMALS TO PEOPLE. At this time, the risk of COVID-19 spreading from animals to people is considered to be low. Learn about COVID-19 and pets and other animals.

FROM PEOPLE TO ANIMALS. It appears that the COVID-19 virus can spread from people to animals in some situations. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is aware of a small number of pets worldwide, including cats and dogs, reported to be infected with the virus, mostly after close contact with people with COVID-19. Learn what you should do if you have pets.

Face Covering RequiredHow to prevent spread

  • Wash your hands (or apply sanitizer) often. 
  • Keep frequently touched surfaces clean.
  • Practice cough and sneeze etiquette.
  • Wear a face covering.
  • Maintain physical (social) distancing of at least 6 feet apart.
  • Self-screen for infection EVERY day.
  • Report if you are sick.
  • Stay home until you get well.

Routine Cleaning

Routinely clean: tables, doorknobs, light switches, handles, desks, toilets, faucets, sinks, and electronics, etc. with EPA approved disinfectants that are appropriate for the surface, following label instructions. Labels contain instructions for safe and effective use of the cleaning product including precautions you should take when applying the product, such as wearing gloves and making sure you have good ventilation during use of the product.

For electronics follow the manufacturer’s instructions for all cleaning and disinfection products:

  • Consider use of wipeable covers for electronics.
  • If no manufacturer guidance is available, consider the use of alcohol-based
      wipes or spray containing at least 70% alcohol to disinfect touch screens.
  • Dry surfaces thoroughly to avoid pooling of liquids.

Cough and Sneeze Etiquette

SneezeTo help stop the spread of germs:

  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • If you don’t have a tissue, cough or sneeze into your elbow, not your hands.
  • Remember to immediately wash your hands after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.

Cloth and Face Coverings

  • Wearing cloth face coverings is an additional public health measure people should take to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
  • Even when wearing the face covering, CDC still recommends that you stay at least 6 feet away from other people (social distancing), frequent hand cleaning and other everyday preventive actions.
  • A cloth face covering is not intended to protect the wearer, but it may prevent the spread of virus from the wearer to others. This would be especially important if someone is infected but does not have symptoms.

face maskCloth face coverings should:

  • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
  • Be secured with ties or ear loops
  • Include multiple layers of fabric
  • Allow for breathing without restriction
  • Be able to be laundered and machine dried without damage or change to shape

Care of cloth face coverings:

  • Cloth face coverings should be routinely washed depending on the frequency of use. 
  • Wash in a washing machine. 
  • Individuals should be careful not to touch their eyes, nose and mouth when removing their cloth face covering and wash hands immediately after removing.

When to wear cloth face coverings:

CDC recommends wearing cloth face coverings in public settings when social distancing is difficult to maintain, especially in areas of significant community-based transmission. Cloth face coverings slow the spread of the virus and help people who may have the virus, and not know it, from transmitting it to others. Do not place on children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the cloth face covering without assistance. 

The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders, as recommended by current CDC guidance.

Social or Physical Distancing

physical distancingSocial distancing, also called "physical distancing," means keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home. To practice social or physical distancing:

  • Stay at least 6 feet (about 2 arms' length) from other people.
  • Do not gather in groups.
  • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.
  • In addition to everyday steps to prevent COVID-19, keeping space between you and others is one of the best tools we have to avoid being exposed to this virus and slowing its spread locally, across the country and the world.

Limit close contact with others outside your household in indoor and outdoor spaces. Since people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, it is important to stay away from others when possible, even if you—or they—have no symptoms.

Social distancing is especially important for people who are at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

People who are at a higher risk

COVID-19 is a new disease and there is limited information regarding risk factors for severe disease.

Older adults and people of any age who have serious underlying medical conditions might be at higher risk for severe illness from COVID-19.

Those at high risk for severe illness from COVID-19 are persons:

  • Age 65 and older
  • Who live in a nursing home or long-term care facility
  • Of any age with underlying medical conditions, especially if not well controlled, including:
    • Chronic lung disease or moderate to severe asthma
    • Serious heart conditions
    • Immunocompromised

Conditions that can cause a person to be immunocompromised include:

  • cancer treatment
  • smoking
  • bone marrow or organ transplantation
  • immune deficiencies
  • poorly controlled HIV or AIDS
  • prolonged use of corticosteroids and other immune weakening medications

Other high-risk persons are those with:

  • severe obesity (body mass index [BMI] of 40 or higher)
  • diabetes
  • chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
  • liver disease

Coping with stress

The outbreak of coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) may be stressful for people. Fear and anxiety about a disease can be overwhelming and cause strong emotions.  

Stress during an infectious disease outbreak can include:

  • Fear and worry about your own health and the health of your loved ones.
  • Changes in sleep or eating patterns.
  • Difficulty sleeping or concentrating.
  • Worsening of chronic health problems.
  • Worsening of mental health conditions.
  • Increased use of alcohol, tobacco or other drugs.

Ways to Cope with Stress

  • Take breaks from watching, reading, or listening to news stories, including social media. Hearing about the pandemic repeatedly can be upsetting.
  • Take care of your body.
    • Take deep breaths, stretch, or meditate.
    • Try to eat healthy meals and snacks.
    • Exercise regularly.
    • Get plenty of sleep.
    • Avoid alcohol and drugs.
  • Make time to unwind. Try to do some other activities you enjoy.
  • Connect with others. Talk with people you trust about your concerns and how you are feeling.
  • Seek professional help. 

Professional Help

  • Call your healthcare provider if stress gets in the way of your daily activities for several days in a row.
  • People with preexisting mental health conditions should continue with their treatment and be aware of new or worsening symptoms.

Contact the USI Counseling Center for help. 
Phone: 812-464-1867 or Email:

The Counseling Center office is located in the Orr Center, Room 1051 and is open Monday-Friday from 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

The University provides a confidential employee assistance program through Deaconess CONCERN which provides assessment, short-term counseling, referral and follow-up services for eligible employees and members of their household. Employees and members of their household are eligible for up to eight free visits; additional visits are covered by most health plans. The cost of the EAP is paid by the University.

Contact Deaconess CONCERN: Toll-free: 800-874-7104 or Local: 812-471-4611

Text version of Action Steps graphics from the top of the page.

COVID-19 Symptoms – Action Steps

START: I think/know I have COVID-19 symptoms, I am awaiting COVID-19 test results and/or have tested positive for COVID-19.

SELF ISOLATE until you talk with a USI Contact Tracer. 

NEXT: Complete USI Self-Report Form

A contact tracer from Human Resources (employee), or Dean of Students Office (student) will contact you after you have completed the self-report.

Contact your healthcare provider or the USI University Health Center regarding testing and clinical care.

Regardless of having a negative test result, UNLESS your healthcare provider determines you have an alternate diagnosis, you will be assumed to have COVID-19 and will be required to stay at home and not return to work or school until the date your contact tracer determines your isolation ends. 

NEXT: Now what?

Stay home except to get medical care

  • Monitor your symptoms. If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), seek emergency medical care immediately.
  • Stay in a separate room from other household members, if possible.
  • Use a separate bathroom if possible.
  • Avoid contact with other members of the household and pets.
  • Don’t share personal household items, like cups, towels and utensils.
  • Wear a mask when around other people.

Approved by the USI Presidential Task Force Steering Committee, November 4, 2020. This plan is subject to change as more information becomes available.

COVID-19 Close Contact – Action Steps

START: I have been in "close contact" with a person with test-confirmed COVID-19 or who has symptoms of COVID-19.

Close contact is defined as being closer than 6 feet for a cumulative 15 minutes over a 24-hour period.

SELF QUARANTINE until you talk with a USI Contact Tracer.

NEXT: Complete USI Self-Report Form

A Contact Tracer from Human Resources (employee), or Dean of Students Office (student) will contact you after you have completed the self-report. 

Contact your healthcare provider or the USI University Health Center regarding testing and clinical care. 

Your return to work or school date will be determined by the Contact Tracer who also will work with you to secure approval to return to campus.


Stay home except to get medical care

  • Monitor yourself for symptoms.
  • If you have an emergency warning sign (including trouble breathing), seek emergency medical care immediately.
  • Maintain at least a 6-foot distance from others in the household.
  • Stay in a separate room from other household members, if possible.
  • Use a separate bathroom, if possible.
  • Avoid contact with other members of the household and pets.
  • Don’t share personal household items, like cups, towels and utensils.
  • Wear a mask when around other people.

You can end quarantine and be with others ONLY:

  • After day 10 without testing and if you are symptom free*
  • After day 7 after receiving a negative test result (test must occur on day 5 or later and must be a PCR test—rapid (antigen) tests are not acceptable) and if you are symptom free*
    *Day zero is the date of exposure. Day 1 begins the following day. Return to campus/class begins the day after day 7 or 10 of quarantine.

Exceptions to Quarantine:

Close contacts diagnosed with COVID-19 by (1) positive COVID-19 test in the last 90 days or (2) a healthcare provider based on their symptoms, and 90 days or less have passed since their symptoms began; and who have no current symptoms of COVID-19, do not have to quarantine and retesting is not recommended.

Approved by the USI Presidential Task Force Steering Committee, December 14, 2020. This plan is subject to change as more information becomes available.

CDC continues to endorse quarantine for 14 days and recognizes that any quarantine shorter than 14 days balances reduced burden against a small possibility of spreading the virus. CDC will continue to evaluate new information and update recommendations as needed.