Updated Dec. 21, 2020

The following outlines the process for contact tracing at Lafayette. Our contact tracing team is composed of staff members certified by Johns Hopkins University or ASTHO.

Step 1: Community member tests positive for COVID-19

Lafayette is testing on a weekly basis all community members accessing campus. Accessing campus for faculty and staff is defined as those who spend more than one day per week on campus or faculty who are teaching in person for any length of time per week.

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Step 2: The community member is placed in isolation

Any Lafayette community member who tests positive for COVID-19 must isolate for at least 10 days. Guidance, support, and resources for isolation will be provided by Bailey Health Center or your personal provider. 

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Step 3: Contact tracers identify close contacts

A member of the contact tracing team will speak with the person with COVID-19 to identify any close contacts. They will then reach out to close contacts who are Lafayette community members. The team collaborates with the Pennsylvania Department of Health to notify close contacts outside the Lafayette community. Our contact tracing team is composed of staff members certified by Johns Hopkins University or ASTHO.

Lafayette contact tracers will contact you if you are identified as a close contact. According to CDC guidelines, close contact is defined as being within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from two days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, two days prior to test specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.

Honesty with contact tracers is critically important. The ability to quickly identify and quarantine close contacts is one of the most important aspects of preventing the spread of COVID-19. To that end, students are expected to provide full and timely responses to information requested by Bailey Health Center and contact tracers. In exchange, students will not be disciplined for any information they share with contact tracers related to violations of the College alcohol and drug policy.

Health and Safety: A Personal and Shared Responsibility
By following the College’s comprehensive health and safety rules, we will ensure that spring 2021 is defined by our community’s successful return to campus. Our protocols and procedures follow guidance provided by the city of Easton, Northampton County, the state of Pennsylvania, and the federal government.

Students, faculty and staff are expected to sign a pledge committing to community health (will be shared in Jan.) that they will adhere to required health and safety guidelines established by the College. Each of us has a personal and shared responsibility to protect ourselves and the community around us.

Step 4: Close contacts are alerted and enter seven-day quarantine

A contact tracer will alert close contacts and instruct them to quarantine for a period of 7-10 days. Individuals who are in quarantine will be instructed to test within a window of 5-7 days and released on day seven if they test negative. Contact tracers will monitor close contacts and check for symptoms with daily check-in calls.

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The purpose of quarantine is to separate a healthy person exposed to COVID-19 from the larger community in case they get sick. Quarantine lasts seven days because it can take up to seven days for someone exposed to COVID-19 to experience symptoms. The purpose of isolation is to separate sick people from the community to prevent the spread of illness. A clinician will determine the length of isolation on a case-by-case basis in accordance with state and federal public health guidance; the length of isolation depends on how quickly a sick person recovers from their illness. Asymptomatic people are typically cleared after 10 days of isolation, when they are no longer contagious.

Step 5: Re-testing and resuming campus activities

A person in isolation may be released at least 10 days after onset of symptoms or a positive test date, and after their symptoms, if any, have been resolving for several days.

A close contact can be released from quarantine after seven days with a negative test result. Close contacts will resume weekly testing after completing quarantine.

You can see Lafayette’s COVID-19 dashboard with testing numbers and results as well as quarantine and isolation numbers.