Next steps on Covid-19 testing
August 13, 2020
Dear Covid Access/Covid Pass users:
As you learned in yesterday’s letter from Chancellor Barnhart, Provost Schmidt, and Vice President for Research Zuber, MIT is entering Phase 2 of resuming campus operations.
What this means
In short, for everyone who accesses campus, Covid-19 testing will now be required to maintain that access. This is a critical part of keeping you and others in our community safe, especially as we prepare for the fall semester. We ask for your patience and flexibility as we implement and improve our testing protocols.
Today, we started our testing ramp-up by inviting all campus residents (i.e., those in MIT residential housing) to get a test. Then, starting on Friday, and proceeding through next week, we will be inviting all others to get tested in four randomly selected groups.
Everyone will have three testing days to comply with the requirement (we currently test Monday – Friday, 8 a.m. – 4 p.m.).
Going forward, those who access campus more frequently will be tested more frequently, and those who access campus less frequently will be tested less frequently, as described in yesterday’s letter:
- Our goal is that every individual who is now using Covid Pass for regular campus access should have a new baseline test by Thursday, August 20.
- Going forward, people living in MIT residence halls will need to test at least twice weekly; tests should be no more frequent than every 3-4 days.
- Non-resident students, faculty, and staff who are on campus 4 days or more per week will also need to test at least twice weekly.
- Non-resident students, faculty, and staff who are on campus 1-3 days per week will need to test at least once per week.
- Anyone accessing campus less frequently will need a test on file within the past 7 days to gain access to campus. If it has been more than 7 days since the last test, the person must be tested before access is granted and should plan in advance for this.
- Note: One-time access is intended for individuals who have to come in for a short period of time on one day. They will not require a test. However, one-time access should not be granted to an individual in your DLC who has to be on campus multiple days in a row, or more often than once a month.
As a reminder, we will monitor Covid Pass regularly to ensure the community is accessing the campus appropriately.
In the weeks ahead, as we learn more about who is accessing campus, and at what frequency, we will evaluate ways to schedule the testing that best balance MIT Medical resources and community access.
If you or any of your fellow students and colleagues have any questions about the testing or access to campus, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you again,
Medical Director, MIT Medical
Ian A. Waitz