COVID-19 testing, upgraded mask distribution and N95 training
COVID-19 Response and Recovery Task Force
Dear Bruin Community:
Masking and testing are two important strategies to help keep our community safer and mitigate the spread of COVID-19 and its variants. Following the announcement on Jan. 21 regarding updates to masking and testing protocols and as we resume in-person instruction and work at UCLA, we want to ensure that all students, faculty and staff are best prepared to reduce COVID-19 risks and follow UCLA protocols. Below is more information on (1.) COVID-19 testing requirements including instructions for departments regarding antigen tests, (2.) upgraded mask distribution, (3.) information about a required online training for voluntary use of N95 masks, and (4.) guidance on mask use and reuse.
1. COVID-19 Testing (excluding Health System)
Testing 72 hours prior to return to UCLA
Faculty, staff and students who have not yet returned to Westwood to work, learn or live, and are not participating in regular UCLA weekly COVID-19 testing, should take a COVID-19 test from their provider of choice (a rapid home antigen test is acceptable) no more than 72 hours prior to their return to Westwood.
Initial return to campus
Students, faculty and staff who are returning to UCLA for the first time this quarter and have not yet been on campus or surrounding campus facilities to participate in the weekly surveillance testing program (PDF) must obtain a negative rapid test result on the day they return to campus before they engage in work, classes or any other activity. Individuals can use their own home COVID-19 rapid antigen test kit or a test kit obtained from one of the following locations:
- Pauley Pavilion
A temporary test distribution site will be set up outside the east entrance of Pauley Pavilion for faculty, staff and students on Monday, Jan. 31 and Tuesday, Feb. 1 from 7 a.m. – 4 p.m. (Pauley East Plaza, entrance: Door 111A/B).
- John Wooden Center
A temporary distribution site will be set up outside the John Wooden Center on the loggia starting Wednesday, Feb. 2 through Friday, Feb. 4 from 7:30 a.m. – 4 p.m.
- UCLA housing facilities
Returning students who live in UCLA housing facilities will test upon arrival and be given further instructions from Housing about check-in and testing protocols. Housing students should not go to the Pauley Pavilion or John Wooden Center test sites to obtain their rapid antigen tests.
- Wilshire Center and Wilshire Glendon office buildings
Rapid test kits are available from the security desks at the main entrances.
- Campus departments
Faculty and staff may also check with their departments to see if they have rapid test kits. Department representatives can order rapid test kits for initial return from the Emergency PPE Supply Store at no cost. Those with questions may contact Bryan Ruiz at firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Instructions for rapid COVID-19 tests for students, faculty and staff:
- Pick up your rapid test per the options above, at the beginning of your shift. Complete your self-administered test alone in a room or outdoors, if possible, as it will require you to remove your mask. Put your mask back on as soon as the test is administered.
- If your test is negative, employees are to notify your supervisor of the negative test result and proceed to work for the day; students may proceed to class, housing or other facilities.
- If your test is positive, take a confirmatory COVID-19 PCR test from a campus vending machine or distribution center and deposit the sample in the collection bin. Employees are to notify your supervisor of the positive test result, leave campus, report your positive test to the UCLA COVID-19 Call Center at 310-267-3300 or email@example.com and immediately enter isolation per the UCLA Isolation and Quarantine Protocol (PDF); students should leave campus, report your positive test to the Ashe Exposure Management Team at firstname.lastname@example.org or 310-206-6217 and immediately enter isolation per the UCLA Isolation and Quarantine Protocol (PDF). Students who live in campus housing will be provided isolation housing.
Requirement to test three to five days after initial return
Students, faculty and staff returning to campus and surrounding facilities for the first time this quarter must take a COVID-19 PCR test from a campus vending machine or distribution center three to five days after their initial return. (See information below for those with hybrid schedules.)
Weekly surveillance testing
All students, faculty and staff working, learning or living on campus or surrounding properties must continue to test at least 1x per week from the campus vending machines or distribution centers (i.e., no more than seven days apart) for the duration of winter quarter regardless of vaccination status per the UCLA Community Screening Protocol (PDF). Testing 2x per week is strongly recommended.
Considerations for hybrid schedules and limited class schedules
Those with hybrid schedules or limited class schedules who will not be on site within three to five days after initial return should take a COVID-19 PCR test from a campus vending machine or distribution center on their initial return to on-site work or learning, in addition to the rapid test. This means on the initial return date, these employees or students will first take a rapid test and then take a test from the campus vending machine on the same day. For clearance through the symptom monitoring survey, the employee or student should then attest in the survey that they have a pending test that may not have yet been found in the symptom survey system and provide details within the symptom survey of a test that was not found by the system (type, date, result).
After the initial return, per the UCLA Community Screening Protocol (PDF), those who are on campus less than one day per week are required to test via a campus vending machine or distribution center each day they are on site. They do not need to make an additional trip to campus just to test.
The symptom survey is tied to the surveillance tests obtained through our campus vending machines, and has been updated to allow clearance in these instances where someone is on campus less than the required testing cadence. For these individuals, there are two ways they can meet the testing requirement through the symptom survey:
- Test within the past seven days from the COVID-19 vending machines or testing centers as these results are automatically found in the symptom survey system.
- Attest in the survey that they have a pending test that may not have yet been found in the symptom survey system and provide details within the symptom survey of a test that was not found by the system (type, date, result).
2. Upgraded Masks Distribution
As mentioned in the Jan. 21 BruinPost, UCLA will provide upgraded masks — at no cost — to students, faculty and staff. Upgraded masks include medical grade surgical masks, KN95 masks, and N95 respirators for voluntary use.
Temporary upgraded mask distribution centers for students, faculty and staff
Beginning Monday, Jan. 31, temporary upgraded mask distribution centers will be set up at the following locations for students, faculty and staff:
- John Wooden Center front desk during operational hours
- Bruin Plaza (near Bruin Bear), Monday – Friday from 7:30 a.m. – 5:30 p.m.
- Tom Bradley International Hall Room 300, Monday – Friday from 8:30 a.m. – 3:30 p.m.
Ongoing upgraded mask distribution for students
Students may also obtain upgraded masks free of charge at various campus locations including (but not limited to) the John Wooden Center; Student Activities Center; Tom Bradley International Hall; and ASUCLA locations including UCLA Store locations, the Ackerman Union Information Window and Ackerman indoor dining locations. Students may pick up individual masks for daily use, or request up to five at a time for the week
Upgraded mask distribution for students in UCLA housing facilities
To reduce congestion and wait times at the sites listed above, students living in UCLA housing facilities are asked to pick up their upgraded masks (medical grade surgical masks provided) at the front desk of their residence at any time.
Department upgraded masks distribution for faculty and staff
Upgraded masks may also be available to faculty and staff through their respective departments. Departments can request upgraded masks for their employees via the Emergency PPE Supply Store at no cost. Departments are asked to place orders only for those supplies needed to meet the needs of their employees who may request them. Those with questions may contact Bryan Ruiz at email@example.com.
Students, faculty and staff will need to show their Bruin ID card at the time of pick up at any of these sites.
3. Required Training for Voluntary Use of N95 Respirators
To educate employees who make voluntary use of N95 respirators about proper use and maintenance, all faculty and staff receiving N95s from UCLA are required to complete a 15-minute training course, per Cal/OSHA. Departments should provide notification of this requirement to employees at the time they distribute an N95 to an employee. View informational flier (PDF) on N95s for more information.
Students are also highly encouraged to complete this training to better educate themselves on proper use and fit.
4. Instructions for Mask Use, Removal and Reuse
Those using medical-grade masks (see informational PDF), KN95 masks and N95 respirators should follow these tips from the CDC regarding proper fit and use:
- Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, or use a hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol.
- Place mask over nose and mouth and secure under chin.
- Hook loops of mask around ears.
- Pinch top around the nose.
Removal and reuse of mask
- Unhook loops from ears and pull mask away from face without touching front of mask.
- Don’t touch ears, nose or mouth when removing mask.
- Wash hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds immediately after removing mask, or use a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
- If the mask is NOT visibly soiled, torn or saturated, carefully fold so that the outer surface is held inward and against itself. The mask can be stored between uses in a clean sealable paper bag or breathable container.
We are excited to soon see the return of our broader Bruin community, and we are so grateful for the care, cooperation and sacrifice you have shown over the past two years as we’ve come together to keep our communities healthier. Each of you has played an important role in our ability to return to face-to-face teaching, learning and work.
Michael J. Beck
Administrative Vice Chancellor
Co-chair, COVID-19 Response and Recovery Task Force
Professor, Institute for Society and Genetics,
Department of Microbiology, Immunology and Molecular Genetics
Co-chair, COVID-19 Response and Recovery Task Force