Update: Flowflex tests extend date

The FDA has extended the shelf-life the Flowflex COVID-19 antigen kits distributed by USC Student Health. The current lot in circulation, LOT: COV201007, with a printed expiration date of January 2023, has been extended to October 2023. See the full list from the FDA uscsthealth.info/covidtest-shelflife.

Pre-Travel COVID-19 Testing

For USC students who need testing to board international flights, please know that testing hours through the Pop Testing (PCR) program currently runs from Monday-Friday; testing is not available on weekends.

Results typically return within 48 hours, but this is not a guaranteed timeframe. Testing offered at USC’s PCR program is designed for screening and diagnosis but not travel services.

Students who have rush needs to meet pre-boarding testing requirements for international flights may need to engage external, commercial testing services (ex: Curative, Testing DX, Hummingbird, 911 COVID Testing); rush charges may not be covered by insurance.

Preparing for Seasonal Holiday Travel & Gatherings (11/18)

Pick up antigen testing kits for COVID-19: these can be obtained at no cost at the Jefferson Lot testing site, and the Pappas Quad testing site, all students and all employees are eligible to pick up kits. Students may also obtain kits from the CSC desks in USC Housing.

Test pre-and post-exposure: Travel increases risk of exposure, so use a test before traveling, and after arriving. Use a second test 24-48 hours later to confirm your negative status.

Get a flu shot and updated COVID-19 booster: If you have not yet received your immunizations, it is strongly recommended to get updated vaccinations for these illnesses before traveling and meeting with groups of friends and relatives.

It is strongly recommended that you wear a high-quality mask when you are in indoor public settings, including all public transit hubs. Indicators that are monitored by the Los Angeles County Dept. of Public Health have tracked recent increased transmission in Los Angeles, prompting this upgraded recommendation for masking protection. Remembers the “three C’s”: closed indoor spaces with poor air flow, crowded settings, and settings where people are breathing talking or breathing heavily closely together.

Masking Update

9/23/22—As the COVID-19 case rate in Los Angeles County has dropped in community-level transmission, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health has revised guidelines on mask requirements and recommendations.

Masks are required in health care settings (including the Engemann and Eric Cohen student health centers, COVID-19 testing sites, the USC Herman Ostrow School of Dentistry, USC Pharmacies, and other patient care settings on campus). They are also required for individuals who have COVID-19 (through day 10), or have had close contact with someone who has COVID-19 (for 10 days following exposure).

Masks are strongly recommended on all forms of public transit, including trains, buses, shuttle buses, and ride-shares. Masks are an individual preference in all other indoor public settings.

8/2 COVID-19 Safety & Other Key Reminders

We are looking forward to a vibrant fall semester, and the arrival of our students for the beginning of the academic year. As we prepare to greet one another in person once again, we want to share important reminders with the community to continue to take precautions regarding COVID-19 in our campus communities. Currently, Los Angeles County is experiencing a slight decline from a high level of community transmission (7,009 new cases reported as of the week ending 7/28) that has trended throughout the summer months, driven by the BA.5 subvariant of Omicron. Some of the cases include reinfection in individuals who previously had COVID-19. We strongly recommend wearing medical-grade masks or respirator masks (including surgical, N95, KN95, KF94) when indoors around others to reduce transmission and risk of infection. Masking is most effective when there is both a good fit (no gaps, covering the nose, mouth, chin) and good filtration. Testing before arrival (1-2 days) to campus and testing upon arrival (3-5 days after) will help keep our campuses safer from transmission.

7/13 Health Advisory

We strongly recommend wearing medical-grade masks or respirator masks (including surgical, N95, KN95, KF94) when indoors around others to reduce transmission and risk of infection. Masking is most effective when there is both a good fit (no gaps, covering the nose, mouth, chin) and good filtration. If and when the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health issues changes to the Public Health Officer order regarding indoor masking protocols, the university will align with required measures.

Update on COVID-19 Procedures

In keeping with the state and county’s revised definition of “close contact” (someone sharing the same indoor space for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period) the university is revising its COVID-19 notification practices. This change is needed to ensure compliance with the new definition. 

Beginning on Wednesday, May 4, all currently enrolled students and all university employees will receive a daily email message with an update on reported cases. A sample message is attached. The message contains a link to the daily report of cases, and instructions for individuals who believe that they have been in close contact with a positive individual. 

Update to Health Officer Order for the control of COVID-19

4/15/22—Updated guidance from the LA County Dept. of Public Health removes the quarantine requirement for individuals who are asymptomatic after having had a close contact exposure to a positive case of COVID-19. Individuals who have had an exposure are required to wear a highly protective mask around others, especially indoors, for a total of 10 days after…

Spring Break Antigen Kits for Students

All USC students are encouraged to pick up a free COVID-19 antigen testing kit for use after spring break travel. You will receive an email from the USC Bookstores with a unique QR code for pickup, and when you return to campus from travel, use this kit within the first 24 hours of arriving back to your residence. If you test NEGATIVE, you may proceed to classes and activities. No uploads are necessary. Schedule a PCR test through Pop Testing between days 3-5 after your return from travel to confirm your results. Learn more about safety over spring break and kit pickup locations.

Updated COVID-19 Policies (3/4)

Beginning March 7, masking will no longer be required indoors in most locations on USC campuses. This includes classes, labs, offices, libraries, recreational facilities, dining facilities, and athletic facilities.

Local, state, and federal guidance requires continued masking in health care facilities (including patient care buildings and testing sites) and on public transportation (including USC shuttles). Masking may also be required in certain circumstances, like in the event of an outbreak on campus.