COVID Testing and Tracing

Campus Health offers COVID testing and supports the Orange County Health Department with contact tracing for UNC students, post-docs and eligible partners and spouses. Those who are experiencing symptoms or have been in close contact with someone with the virus should receive diagnostic testing at Campus Health. 

Spring 2021 Prior to Return Undergraduate Testing information and Spring 2021 testing details available thru Carolina Together.

Decision tree on where to get tested


If you have tested positive for COVID in the past 90 days, retesting is not recommended.

Carolina Together Testing Program

Mandatory and voluntary prospective testing on campus is available to students and staff. This testing is not for symptomatic students or those who have been identified as close contacts and is not performed at Campus Health.

Details for CTTP testing are available on the Carolina Together website.

Diagnostic Testing at Campus Health

Diagnostic testing is for close contacts and symptomatic students, post-doctoral fellows and their eligible partners and spouses in the Student Testing Center at Campus Health. It is recommended to test when symptoms develop or after 5 - 7 days have passed since being exposed to COVID. 

  • Who: UNC students, post-docs and eligible partners  who are close contacts of a known positive, who have symptoms, or who believe they have been exposed to COVID-19.
  • Where: UNC Student Testing Center. Enter at the Physical Therapy clinic door located on the side of the Campus Health building facing the Bell Tower Parking Deck. This means you’ll enter on the lowest level of Campus Health. Click for a Google Map to the testing center.
  • When: Monday - Friday 9 am - 12 pm and 1 pm - 4 pm by appointment. Schedule an appointment by requesting an appointment through the Patient Portal or call 919-966-2281.
  • Cost: The costs of diagnostic testing is covered by most health insurance plans. Costs may be lower at Campus Health than other testing locations because the visit portion of charges has already been paid through your health fees.
  • How: Diagnostic testing is offered by nasal swab testing.
  • Parking: Campus Health offers several parking spaces next to our building. Request a parking pass be emailed to you when you make your appointment.
  • Results: Time to receive lab results can vary based on reference lab testing capacity and any shortage of testing supplies. Currently, test results are available in 1-3 business days. 

If your test result is positive

Students who test positive must isolate until they meet criteria for ending isolation (i.e., 10 days from onset of symptoms or day of positive test, as well as no fever or symptoms for 24 hours). Campus Health will contact any positive student with isolation instructions. Those who reside on-campus will be instructed on relocation to dedicated isolation space on campus. 

Students and post-docs who test positive off-campus should contact Campus Health as soon as possible after receiving their result.

If your test result is negative

A negative test result indicates your status at the moment of the test, and does not indicate that you will remain negative after the test. 

Even if you have a negative test result, continue to:

  • wear a mask
  • stay physically distanced
  • avoid crowds and indoor crowded places
  • wash your hands frequently
  • monitor for symptoms and
  • minimize contact with people at high risk of COVID-19 complications.

If you test negative but have been in an area with clusters of cases or have been otherwise exposed to the virus, you may still need to quarantine. It can take 2-14 days for someone who is exposed to SARS-CoV-2 to develop symptoms of COVID-19. In other words, a negative test is not a free pass out of quarantine. You could still unknowingly pass COVID to others during those 14 days.

Close Contact Tracing by Campus Health

Campus Health, with guidance from the local Health Department, conducts close contact tracing when students and post-doctoral fellows test positive for COVID-19. Your name and information will not be shared and remains confidential.

Campus Health utilizes the following definition of a close contact:

Any individual within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative time of 15 minutes starting from 2 days before symptom onset for symptomatic individuals and 2 days prior to positive specimen collection for asymptomatic individuals.

This means that individuals who maintain at least 6 feet physical separation in a classroom or congregate setting will typically not be considered a close contact.

Close contacts of a positive case are contacted by Campus Health or Orange County Health Department, and they are provided instructions on the need to quarantine for up to 14 days, provided self-monitoring instructions and they receive daily communications from Campus Health. Arrangements for support if needed during the quarantine period are coordinated with campus partners such as Housing, Dining and Dean of Students Office.