COVID Protocols and Policies

Dear USF Community,

We hope that your summer is going well. We write with updates to our COVID-19 protocols and policies. 

Cases continue to be low on campus and in San Francisco. It is estimated that 95 percent of the population in the United States now has some form of immunity or protection against COVID-19 due to vaccination, infection with a previous variant, or both. This immunity, combined with the wide availability of tests and treatments, has greatly reduced the risk of severe illness, hospitalization, and death from COVID-19 for many people. As a result, the Federal Public Health Emergency (PHE) for COVID-19 has ended, as has the statewide emergency in California. We are in a much better place now than we have ever been.

Face Coverings on Campus

Face coverings are optional at USF both indoors and outdoors due to COVID-19 community levels being categorized as low. This policy is in line with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and San Francisco Department of Public Health (SFDPH) guidance. The deans of each school and college have discretion to require masks in programs within their areas due to exposure risk related to training and work in professional settings. Please refer to any communications from the deans’ offices for details. 

We will continue to monitor COVID-19 levels in our community and share any significant changes with you. When levels are in the low range, as they are now, masking will be optional. In the moderate range, masking will be recommended, particularly if you are at high risk. If levels are in the high range, indoor masking will be required.

Please remember that, regardless of our community COVID levels, people may choose to wear a mask, and masking may be required in other places by local or state authorities. It is best to carry a mask with you at all times. All community members should stay up to date with vaccinations based on their risk factors and get tested if symptoms present.

Symptom Monitoring

As a member of the USF community, you should self-monitor for symptoms and not come to campus if you are symptomatic, even if you have a negative test. Residential students should report positive cases to to receive guidance. If you are not a residential student, you no longer need to report positive COVID test results. We trust you will not come to campus if you are not feeling well or if you test positive for COVID. 

Isolation Period if Positive

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) has updated their Isolation period and those who are feeling better (no high fever) can be released after five days whether or not they have a negative COVID test.


USF is no longer offering on-campus testing. If you need a COVID test, please contact your healthcare provider.

Vaccines and Boosters

Students need to submit their COVID-19 vaccine and/or booster records through Med+Proctor. Faculty and staff may update their information in Workday by following the upload instructions. Find a COVID-19 vaccine or booster clinic near you

COVID-19 vaccines and boosters will be available for all USF community members on Friday, Aug. 18 from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. in UC 402/403. Please sign up for an appointment

Please note, nursing students are required to submit other health requirements documentation to the School of Nursing and Health Professions via a Castle Branch account. Please go to the Nursing Health Requirements web page for full details on specific health requirements for nursing majors, and for instructions on how to create a Castle Branch account.

The CDC and the FDA have recently announced changes to the COVID-19 vaccination regimen. The original monovalent mRNA vaccines have been discontinued. This is not because they are unsafe or don’t work, but rather due to the development of newer mRNA vaccines directed against newer variants. Recent data suggests that these mRNA vaccines are as effective against previous variants as they are against the ones currently circulating, making the original vaccines clinically irrelevant. In addition, since the vast majority of adults have some form of immunity — from previous infection, vaccination or both — the original two-dose primary series is no longer relevant. Currently, it is recommended that everyone 6 years and older receive a single bivalent dose, no matter their previous history of vaccination, to be considered up to date. At-risk populations such as the elderly and immunocompromised may require more frequent vaccination and they should check with their providers to discuss. 

The CDC and FDA continue to assess COVID-19 severity and vaccine development. It is possible that, like influenza, yearly doses directed against the more current circulating variants may be recommended. USF will continue to monitor these changes with our medical consultants to determine if changes in our policy are needed.


All visitors to USF are expected to follow our community guidelines. Visitors must self-monitor for symptoms and avoid coming to campus if they do not feel well. To ensure clear communication of these guidelines, the group that is sponsoring a visitor or event is responsible for ensuring that their visitors understand our community guidelines. Business units were asked to build these visitor expectations into their existing workflows. Vaccinated guests no longer need to show that they are up to date with vaccinations prior to coming to campus. 

Additional Information

Please continue to protect yourself and your community by practicing the following safe and healthy habits:

  • Wash your hands often for at least 20 seconds.
  • Consider wearing an optional face covering to help protect our community from the flu, cold, and other respiratory viruses.
  • Take extra precautions in large indoor group settings.
  • Stay home when not feeling well.
  • Utilize hand sanitizer stands around campus.
  • Get your influenza vaccine. 

USF Together 

With these new guidelines and resources in place, we have removed the content previously posted on the USF Together section of myUSF. We will continue to keep you updated about changes in university protocols by email, myUSF announcements, and on the Health Promotion Services section of myUSF.  

Thank you for your continued cooperation and for all you are doing to keep our community safe and healthy. Please be assured that we continue to monitor public health guidance carefully and are regularly engaging with our medical consultants. 

Thank you,
COVID Management Team