Coronavirus/COVID-19 Information

Campus Response to COVID-19 Cases, Exposures Involving Students

With everyone following COVID-19 best practices—wearing face coverings, keeping a safe physical distance from others, and self-isolating at home if symptoms develop—the risk of COVID-19 infection among the Chico State community can be minimized.

The Butte County Public Health Department—the lead agency overseeing Butte County’s COVID-19 response—is primarily concerned with interactions involving “close contact.” Close contact occurs when individuals are closer than six feet of each other for more than 15 minutes with or without face coverings, one individual has COVID-19 symptoms or is asymptomatic, and that person later tests positive.

In the event a positive COVID-19 case occurs on campus or a “close contact” exposure with someone suspected of having COVID-19 is reported, the following protocols will be initiated:

Positive COVID-19 Case

Flowchart (PDF)

Step 1—Student Notifies Instructor & Self-Isolates

  • The infected student immediately notifies their instructor of a positive test result and self-isolates at home.
  • Student must self-isolate at home for 10 days from symptom onset or test date if asymptotic. Any person that tests positive should be separated from others if at all possible or wear a face covering and maintain a distance of at least 6 feet.

Step 2—Instructor Directs Student to Contact COVID-19 Hotline

  • Instructor directs student to contact COVID-19 Hotline at 530-898-2222 to provide details about the locations the student had spent time on campus.
  • If the student is unable or unwilling to call COVID-19 Hotline, instructor should notify the Hotline and provide contact information for the positive student.
  • Instructor develops plan with student to ensure the successful continuity of instruction while student is in self-isolation.
  • Instructor continues to reiterate to the class the importance of face coverings, social distancing, and good hand hygiene.
  • Note—Due to privacy laws, instructors should not share information about the positive COVID-19 case or infected student with other students, faculty, administrators, or others not directly involved in the case. If the infected student was tested directly through BCPHD, BCPHD will contact Chico State’s Pandemic Response Team about the situation and how to respond—with the Pandemic Response Team potentially contacting the instructor with guidance.

Step 3—University Contacts Student & Health Department

  • A member of Chico State’s Pandemic Response Team will contact the infected student to collect pertinent health and event information, including the last date the individual was on campus, location(s) the individual visited while on campus, and close contact (see definition above) with others the student may have had.
  • Details will be passed along to BCPHD, which will then reach out to the student to initiate contact tracing and health monitoring.
  • BCPHD will monitor the student’s symptoms during the full, 14-day self-isolation period.

Step 4—Cleaning & Sanitization

  • If the student lives in University Housing (UH), a member of Chico State’s Pandemic Response Team will notify the UH Executive Director, who will notify the EHS Director, who will in turn notify the FMS Associate Vice President or their designee. If the student does not live in UH, the UH Executive Director will not be notified, and contact will be made between the Pandemic Response Team and the EHS Director.
  • FMS closes the classroom and other areas the student inhabited while infectious and initiates enhanced cleaning and sanitization process that follows all local and state directives.
  • Upon direction from BCPHD, FMS will sanitize all campus spaces the student had visited two days prior to testing positive. Following Centers for Disease Control guidelines, FMS will allow the area(s) to age out seven days or greater before cleaning if the area is not immediately needed.
  • Thorough cleaning includes sanitizing doorknobs and handles, light switches, desks, chairs, tables, and other frequently touched surfaces and objects.

Step 5—Contact Tracing

  • BCPHD will determine whether the infected student had close contact with other students or employees during the two days before the student’s symptoms started or since the student tested positive.
  • While not required in all situations, BCPHD may contact the instructor for additional information about the infected student and classroom interactions.
  • BCPHD will investigate all incidents of close contact with individuals—both on and off the Chico State campus—that occurred two days before the infected student developed symptoms or tested positive, and during the first 10 days from symptom onset or testing date that produced positive test result.
  • Individuals whom BCPHD identifies as having had close contact with the infected student will be required to self-quarantine for 14 days after their last exposure to the infected student as long the potentially exposed individual does not develop symptoms.
  • Note: In the unlikely event that BCPHD determines the class cannot be continued in-person due to safety concerns, BCPHD will notify Chico State’s Pandemic Response Team, which will then contact the instructor and college dean.

Step 6—Student Returns to Class

  • For students who are asymptomatic:
    • Return to class after 10 days from testing date that produced positive test result if no symptoms develop and upon approval from BCPHD.
  •  For studentswho are symptomatic:
    • Return to class after 10 days since symptom(s) first appeared and 24 hours with no fever without the use of fever-reducing medication.

Suspected COVID-19 Case

Step 1—Student Notifies Instructor

  • The infected student immediately notifies the COVID-19 hotline of thier infection or exposure.
  • Students exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms self-isolate at home immediately, but may return to classes/work after 10 days since symptoms onset, no fever for 24 hours, and symptoms have improved.

Step 2—Student Contacts COVID-19 Hotline

The student immediately contacts Chico State’s COVID-19 Hotline at 530-898-2222 and provides details about their symptoms and information about their last visit to campus.

Step 3—Student Follows Hotline Directives

Health care staff from the COVID-19 Hotline will provide students with the latest guidance from local and state health officials—which changes periodically—for caring for themselves and protecting those around them.

Widespread COVID-19 Cases on Campus

If multiple members of the campus community—those who have been approved to be on campus during the semester—test positive for COVID-19 simultaneously, the University will consult with BCPHD officials for guidance.

In consultation with BCPHD officials, the University President will assess if the current method of delivering student instruction and services warrants modification and for what length of time based on the COVID-19 risk level. While unlikely, if a critical mass of COVID-19 cases is impacting campus, the University will expand the utilization of online instruction, services, and operations accordingly to ensure the wellbeing of the campus community.