Regional Campus Testing

Weekly Testing

Currently, unvaccinated students — including students on the regional campuses who live in university housing — will be required to test weekly as the academic year begins. Students who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 and reported their status to the university will not have to test. We will continue to monitor the impacts of variants of concern and may need to adjust the testing requirements for vaccinated students as new information is available. Once House Bill 244 goes into effect on October 14, we will test vaccinated and unvaccinated students with the same protocols.

Quarantine and Isolation Housing

Given that broad access is available to vaccines, on-campus quarantine and isolation housing will be limited this year and cannot be guaranteed at any time. All students should have individual plans for isolation and quarantine housing in the event they are exposed or have a positive COVID-19 test.

Testing Hours and Location Information

  • Newark: Please bring your physical BuckID to pick up a take-home saliva test kit at the front desk of Jane C. and William T. McConnell Hall on Mondays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • CFAES Wooster: Please bring your physical BuckID to pick up a take-home saliva test kit at the lobby of the Applewood Village Apartments on Mondays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.
  • Mansfield: Please bring your physical BuckID to pick up a take-home saliva test kit at the front desk of the Molyet Village Apartments Community Center on Mondays from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Weekly Collection Bin Locations

Students may drop off completed tests by Wednesdays at 4 p.m. to be included in a UPS pick up option. Tests completed after this deadline will need to be dropped off at an authorized UPS shipping location.

  • Mansfield: Molyet Village Apartments Community Center front desk by 4 p.m.
  • Newark: Jane C. and William T. McConnell Hall front desk by 4 p.m.
  • CFAES Wooster: Applewood Village Apartments housing lobby by 4 p.m.

Testing Process

Because this is a take-home test kit, there is no physical location to visit to take this test with Vault, all appointments for testing will be through remote testing. When you are ready to collect your sample, log into your Vault account to be connected to a Zoom video call with a Vault test supervisor who will guide you through producing your saliva sample and collecting it in the tube provided in your kit. The whole process takes just a few minutes.

You should not eat, drink, chew gum or use toothpaste or mouthwash 30 minutes before providing the sample.

You should take your test within 48 hours after pickup. After completing the process and sealing your test in the biohazard bag, as well as the cardboard box or padded envelope, seal everything in the provided UPS shipping bag. Then, you will drop off your packaged sample in a collection bin at your regional campus or at an authorized UPS shipping location no later than 48 hours after you receive the kit. Please see the instructional guide and follow the step-by-step instructions. 

COVID-19 remote testing with a Vault Health test supervisor hours of operation are Sunday through Thursday: 8 a.m. – 8 p.m. Friday and Saturday: 8 a.m. – 6 p.m. We recommend testing in the morning as UPS pick-up times vary.

Frequently Asked Questions

Requirements

Is testing required? 

Currently, unvaccinated students — including regional campus students who live in university housing — will be required to test weekly as the academic year begins.

Can I opt out of testing as a residential student?

There are a few reasons why you may be able to opt out of testing:   

  • You have a disability that would physically preclude them from having the test done. 
  • You are currently sick and unable to get to the testing facility. 
  • You have a sincerely held religious belief.
  • You have an order by public health official/provider to maintain quarantine/isolation.
  • You are taking all virtual courses and verify you will not be physically on campus during the semester and do not have a university housing contract
  • You have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days. 

To complete an exemption form, please visit go.osu.edu/SHSexemption. Information about student exemptions can be found by checking their Ohio State email address. For questions, email shs-covidtesting@osu.edu.  

What are the consequences if I do not have a qualified reason for opting out and does not participate in the testing program?

If you do not show up for or reschedule their weekly testing appointment, you will be contacted via email by Student Conduct to reschedule for the following week. If you fail to either show up for your second scheduled testing appointment and/or respond to a request to reschedule your initial appointment within two business days, you will receive a directive to quarantine until testing can be completed. BuckID access to non-residential spaces may be shut off and a report will be made to Student Conduct for non-compliance.

Where can I find updates about my exemption status?

Information about your exemption can be found by checking your Ohio State email address. For questions, email shs-covidtesting@osu.edu.  

How long does it take to process my exemption?

Exemptions take 3-7 business days to process. Information about your exemption can be found by checking your Ohio State email address. For questions, email shs-covidtesting@osu.edu. Please note the approval or denial of your exemption could be delayed if proper documentation is not uploaded.

What happens when my exemption expires?

You will start testing the week your exemption expires, unless it expires after testing has taken place on your campus for the week, then you will resume testing the following week. You should schedule your appointment using MyChart.

Information for those who have been vaccinated 

If I am fully vaccinated, how often should I test?

Students who have been vaccinated against COVID-19 and reported their status to the university will not have to test. 

What will happen if I test positive even though I have been vaccinated?

If you’ve been vaccinated and you have a positive test, you will need to go into isolation, just like anyone else with a positive test. Even though you are less likely to become ill, you may still transmit the virus to other people.

Will I need to go into quarantine if I am a close contact after I’ve been vaccinated?

If you are fully vaccinated and identified as a close contact, the Case Investigation and Contact Tracing Team will determine if your vaccination status currently qualifies you for a quarantine exemption.

Why should I get vaccinated if I still have to follow all the safety procedures, including testing requirements?

Vaccination protects you from a severe illness from COVID-19. That’s a critical benefit, which will help you and reduce the burden on our hospitals and society. We may also eventually find out that the vaccine has an impact on infection and transmission, too. But it’s just too early to know. We encourage everyone to get vaccinated when they are able to do so.

 

At-home test kits

At-home test kits are available for the campus community. This supplemental testing is optional and designed to help keep you and those around you as safe and healthy as possible. Test kits will be available at select locations on the Columbus and regional campuses. Additional kits are available throughout the state in various locations including local libraries.

These tests do not replace the campus testing program. If you are required to test on campus as part of the regular surveillance program, these tests cannot be used in place of required testing on the regional campuses.

There is a limit of two boxes per visit. Each box contains Abbott’s BinaxNOW™ COVID-19 Ag At-Home Test Kit (6 Pack). These rapid antigen test kits are self-administered and can be used at your discretion throughout the fall.

The university will not directly receive your test results from these kits but local public health authorities will be notified. Ohio State students and employees using these tests should report their positive test result to the university as part of the regular process for reporting outside test results via BuckMD or by contacting the Contact Tracing and Case Investigation Team (CICTT) at 614-688-2273.

You must use the eMed Telehealth provider with these test kits (instructions are included in the test kit). Visit ohio.emed.com to begin your virtual visit using the associated app.

Locations

Mansfield:

  • Bromfield Library Information Commons
  • Eisenhower Student Union 2nd Floor
  • Ovalwood Food Pantry
  • Buckeye Village 
  • Molyet Village
  • Campus Recreation Center
  • Riedl 104

CFAES Wooster

  • Student Activity Center front desk
  • ATI Library front desk
  • Wooster Campus Research Library front desk

Marion

  • Student Center front desk

Lima

  • Perry Webb Student Life Building – Just Inside the main doors
  • Library – Cook Hall – inside main door foyer

Newark

  • OSU Admissions and Advising Office, Founders Hall, first floor, room 1075, front desk
  • John L. and Christine Warner Library, Warner Center, first floor, room 169, front desk
  • Student Financial Services, Hopewell Hall, In the Gateway area, front desk

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I use the at-home test kit?

Visit ohio.emed.com to begin your virtual visit. Detailed instructions available: https://coronavirus.ohio.gov/static/vaccine/ohio-binaxnow-home-user-guide.pdf

How long does it take?

The process takes about 15-20 minutes, including the app registration, taking the test, waiting for the results and interpretation of results.

Why are there six in the box?

Self-administered test kits can be used at your discretion. Additional kits are available throughout the state in various locations including local libraries.

Why are you offering at-home testing kits and am I required to use them?

This supplemental testing is optional and designed to help keep you and those around you as safe and healthy as possible when you are not able to participate in routine on-campus testing.

What happens if I test positive?

The eMed Telehealth provider will share with you the need to isolate to protect others. Your results will be conveyed to the appropriate public health authorities, who will follow up. Your results will not immediately be communicated to the university. You can choose to share a positive result via BuckMD and/or by contacting the university’s Case Investigation and Contact Tracing Team.

What happens if I test negative?

No further action is required in most cases. If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 you should still follow up with your medical provider.

Why is my test kit expired?

The expiration dates for BinaxNOW at home tests were set to expire after nine months, but the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has authorized an extension of the expiration dates to 12 months. For each home test, add three additional months to the expiration date identified on the outside of the box. For mor information, see Abbott’s letter extending “longer than labeled product expiry date.”