Section 3: Testing, Reporting and Quarantine

Testing

Testing is available in the area and by appointment at Pat Walker Health Center for all university students and employees.

To schedule COVID-19 testing on campus, contact Pat Walker Health Center at 575-4451, option 1, or schedule an appointment online at myhealth.uark.edu.

Additional information about testing, results and quarantine/isolation requirements can be found on the Pat Walker Health Center Website.

Who Should be Tested for COVID-19?

Anyone who wants to be tested for COVID-19, can be, but it’s critical to be tested for COVID-19 if you:

  • Are experiencing any COVID-19-like symptoms.
  • Are identified as being a close contact/have had direct contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 – regardless of vaccination status. Individuals who have been identified as having a close contact should be tested 3-5 days after exposure. However, fully vaccinated individuals with a booster shot do not need to quarantine unless they develop symptoms.
  • Believe you have been recently exposed.
  • Plan on traveling or being around high-risk individuals susceptible to life-threatening complications due to COVID-19.

If you test positive for COVID-19 with a home-test, start isolation as there is no need to re-test. A positive home test = a positive test.

If you are unsure if you need to be tested, call to speak with a medical provider.

At-Home Testing/Self-Testing Costs Covered By University Insurance for Plan Participants

University of Arkansas health plans provide full reimbursement for costs of at-home COVID-19 tests for plan participants. This benefit became effective Jan. 15, 2022.

At-home tests provide for the sample collection, analysis, and testing results at home.  The program does NOT cover testing in which the sample is collected at home and mailed/delivered to a testing facility.

Free At-Home Tests

The U.S. federal government allows individual households to request and order rapid COVID-19 tests, free-of-charge. They will be shipped directly free-of-charge in approximately 7-12 days.

Self-Reporting No Longer Required

The university is no longer taking self-reports of positive cases of COVID-19 from the campus community due in part to the Arkansas Department of Health ending reporting and contact tracing for colleges and universities. 

Those who receive a positive test result should follow isolation guidelines and notify supervisors, and/or instructors as they would for other illness related absences. The university also encourages the notification of others who may be considered close contacts (see below). 

Notifying Others of Positive COVID-19 Cases

If you have tested positive — or been identified as a close contact — we encourage you to reach out to those you have recently been in close contact with to inform them of your status.

Quarantine and Isolation Procedures

Quarantine and isolation procedures continue to be a necessary step in mitigating the spread of COVID-19, especially within our campus community.

Students, faculty and staff should be aware that the university’s quarantine and isolation guidance has been adjusted to align with guidance for the general public from the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) including at least five days at home for those with positive COVID-19 tests or those who have been exposed or identified as a close contact.

When to Stay Home

Use the CDC’s Isolation Calculator and Guidance page as a guide for when to stay home based on your individual vaccination status, close contacts and symptoms.

Where Should You Quarantine/Isolate?

If required to quarantine or isolate, you will need to separate yourself from others and avoid using shared living spaces if possible. Make sure there is someone at the residence (or you can call) who can help you with basic needs and support like groceries and prescription medicines.

On-Campus Residents

  • Students living on campus should return home temporarily or use an off-campus alternative to complete their quarantine or isolation period.
  • Students who cannot find a place to complete their isolation or quarantine period off-campus can discuss all viable options with their hall or apartment staff.
  • Students can return to their on-campus assignment after the quarantine or isolation time recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and local public health authorities.

Off-Campus Students

  • Students living off campus should complete their quarantine or isolation period at their home residence or somewhere with access to a separate room and bathroom.
  • Students should not leave their home except to get medical care.
  • Students needing help can also contact U of A Cares for additional support.

Release from Quarantine/Isolation

Individuals are released from isolation or quarantine based on current best practices, such as length of time, improving symptoms, and the guidance of health care providers and the guidance of health care providers. Once you have completed your quarantine/isolation period, you are free to resume regular activities.