The College is not currently conducting regular surveillance testing for COVID-19, but is closely monitoring evolving options for affordable, rapid tests and vaccines in preparation for our return to in-person instruction. Baseline testing has been periodically conducted for residential students and essential workers.
In adherence with Los Angeles County guidelines, diagnostic testing is being implemented as follows:
Whittier College will adhere to LA County infection control guidance regarding quarantine and isolation.
If a positive or suspected case of COVID-19 occurs on campus, the area will be closed off for at least 24 hours or the longest time practicable. Trained facilities staff using personal protective equipment and proper ventilation will decontaminate infected areas.
The Los Angeles County Department of Public Health (LADPH) requires institutions of higher education to conduct contact tracing to assist the County in protecting our campus community and containing the spread of COVID-19. The College is required to report positive cases and close contacts to the LADPH within one business day. Therefore, the timely cooperation of all affected individuals is extremely important.
The College’s COVID-19 Compliance Team will conduct personal interviews with individuals who test positive to obtain information required by LADPH and to ascertain with whom the positive case has been in close contact. The CDC defines close contact as “someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.” Staff members on the COVID-19 Compliance Team have completed contact tracing certification. Consistent with federal and state laws governing patient confidentiality, the College will not share any patients’ private medical information other than to confirm that they are an employee of the College. Individuals may also be contacted by LADPH contact tracers. The College has invested in the Everbridge and Everbridge Contact Tracer apps to enhance our contact tracing efforts. For details on the apps and how proximity tracing works, please see Everbridge.
Individuals who have been exposed to the confirmed case will be notified to begin quarantine as appropriate. The entire campus community will be notified of COVID-19 outbreaks (occurrence of three or more epidemiologically linked cases within a 14-day period) and of the measures that will be implemented to control the spread.