Instructions: Exposure to a positive case

Close contact exposure is defined by the California Department of Public Health as “someone sharing the same indoor airspace, e.g., home, clinic waiting room, airplane, etc., for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period (for example, three individual 5-minute exposures for a total of 15 minute) during an infected person’s (laboratory-confirmed or clinical diagnosis) infectious period.” This definition of shared indoor airspace should be applied to classrooms, offices, and other similar-sized spaces.

For large indoor airspaces (e.g., dining halls, lecture halls, auditoriums), those considered exposed may be limited to 1) those in a pre-defined or identifiable group (e.g., teammates, club members, cohort, etc.) or 2) those within 6 feet of the infected person for 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.

NOTE: persons with an outdoor exposure at are not considered close contacts.


You are advised to get tested for COVID-19. The date of exposure to a positive person is Day 0 (zero). Day 1 is the first full day after exposure. Test on days 3-5 after exposure. 

Useful links:

Testing is available at no cost during paid working time. Tests are available for pickup at Engemann and Eric Cohen student health centers, CSC desks in USC Housing, and the USC Bookstores.

  1. You may continue to work and attend classes.
  2. Test: Take an antigen test between days 3-5 after exposure.
  3. Wear a well-fitting, medical-grade or higher quality mask while indoors around others, for 10 days after exposure.
  4. Monitor for symptoms until day 10.
  5. If you develop any symptoms, take an antigen test.

“90 Days” Note: If you have previously tested positive for COVID-19 within the past 90 days and you do not have symptoms, you should not participate in tests that are PCR-based, as results may not correctly reflect your level of current infection. Monitor for symptoms, and if you develop any symptoms, do not go to class/work/activities. Discuss your symptoms with your medical care provider (if you are a student, contact Student Health).


These instructions are also made to reinforce awareness of the nature of community spread of COVID-19 and the importance of the following health and safety practices:

Information For Employees: If you are a current employee/subcontractor experiencing COVID-19 symptoms you will not be disciplined for not coming into work. Your health is our top priority and we remain committed to providing a safe environment for all of our employees. As an employee of the University, you may be entitled to several different types of leave or benefits including the following:

  • Family Medical Leave
  • California Family Rights Act Leave
  • Workers’ Compensation
  • California Paid Sick Leave
  • Disability Insurance
  • Long Term Disability
  • Other state provided paid benefits, such as State Disability Insurance (SDI), unemployment benefits, and/or California Paid Family Leave

Please be aware that we have a COVID-19 disinfection protocol and safety plan that is consistent with CDC recommendations as well as state and local directives. In accordance with our disinfection protocol and safety plan, we will have frequent enhanced cleaning throughout campus and routine disinfection of areas identified during contact tracing. If you would like more information on the cleaning of buildings at USC, please visit the Office of Environmental Health & Safety’s website where you can view a guide sheet on enhanced cleaning during COVID-19.

We take the health and safety of our employees very seriously. If you have any questions about this notice or any health and safety concerns, please contact USC Student Health at 213-740-9355 or

We strictly prohibit unlawful retaliation, harassment, and discrimination. This includes retaliation, harassment, and discrimination against individuals for COVID-19-related reasons, including but not limited to an individual’s exposure or possible exposure to COVID-19, showing or reporting symptoms of COVID-19, testing positive for COVID-19, and/or taking a leave of absence for COVID-19-related reasons.

daily digest of locations and dates of positive cases on campus may be accessed online (log-in required). To view this information, you must be logged out of a personal Gmail account, and logged in to your USC account, in order to access this site. Use your primary USC NetID; school/unit-based subdomain accounts (“med,” “law,” “marshall,” etc.,) will cause you to see a 404 error. For instructions on how to log in to USC Google G-Suite apps using your USC NetID, visit the ITS instruction page.