MBL Mandatory Asymptomatic Testing Program
To help limit the spread of COVID-19, the MBL is taking measures to test, trace, quarantine, and isolate cases that may emerge. Per MBL policy, any program participant residing in MBL housing or participating in a course or research in MBL facilities, who is arriving from outside the U.S. or from a state outside of Massachusetts, including returning residents, who do not meet an exemption (e.g. proof of full vaccination), are required to quarantine for 10 days, or produce a negative COVID-19 test result that has been administered up to 72-hours prior to arrival in Massachusetts.
This testing program is mandatory for anyone residing in MBL residences who have not been fully vaccinated upon arrival to our campus and includes spouses residing in the Swope dormitory housing. For those individuals living in MBL-owed housing, this program is a requirement independent of length of stay or type of housing for individuals who have not been fully vaccinated. The program is voluntary for participants in this summer’s education and visiting research program who are living off campus. Fully vaccinated individuals participating in education and visiting research programs who would like to be a part of the testing program may also sign-up.
In order to be exempt from the mandatory testing program, individuals living in MBL-owned housing can provide their proof of full vaccination with either a hard copy of their vaccination card or a photograph from their phone of their vaccination card at registration upon arrival to campus.
Prior to your visit you will receive information on how to register an account with our testing partner, the company Color. The MBL testing program will be held in a reserved tent on the Quad near the Loeb Laboratory on Monday and Thursday mornings. The testing kit activation, sample collection, and kit drop-off process should not take you more than 5-10 minutes to complete. You will be informed of the specific timeframe for your testing window via your respective education or research administrator. Staff will be present at the testing site to provide you with assistance throughout the testing process.
Testing participants will be notified by email and text when test results are processed. Once alerted, they must log into the Color secure portal to view their results. Most test results are received within 24 hours. Off-schedule testing is available for program participants who require a negative PCR test upon arrival to their returning destination. Please contact your respective education or research administrator to request an off-schedule test.
As vaccination programs continue to move forward, the MBL will assess its Testing Program requirements.
MBL Contact Tracing Program
The MBL will conduct contact tracing in the event that a program participant (student, faculty, researcher) residing in campus housing or a staff member is symptomatic for or tests positive for COVID-19. The MBL’s Contact Tracing Program has been active since September 16, 2020.
The goal of MBL’s Contact Tracing Program is to rapidly identify any close contacts on campus who may exist among our work force or among program participants residing on the campus so that we can minimize the possibility of on-campus spread through implementation of appropriate public health measures (e.g., quarantine).
The Massachusetts Department of Public Health via Barnstable County or the Town of Falmouth Health Officer uses the Visiting Nurse Association (VNA) to conduct contact tracing that looks more broadly at an infected individual’s close contacts, in particular those that may have occurred off-campus.