Test and Trace guide for students

BCU’s test and trace processes are designed to ensure the safety of you and your fellow students and staff during the Covid-19 pandemic. 

Covid-19 test

Working together, we’ll ensure you have the support you need if you, or members of your class, have symptoms.

Step One: What to do if you have symptoms

  1. Take action – If you are at home when you experience symptoms, stay there and do not come onto campus. If you are on campus, make sure you maintain two metre social distancing, wear your face covering, apply hand gel and immediately go home.
  2. Tell your course leader – let them know you are experiencing symptoms by phone or email.
  3. Request a test – don’t delay, as soon as you have symptoms request a free test from the NHS here: www.gov.uk/get-coronavirus-test
  4. Report your symptoms – you must report any symptoms immediately on the Notify system here: bcu.notifytechnology.com/
  5. We’ll support you - a member of the Mental Health & Wellbeing Team will contact you to ensure you have all the support you need and to make sure we are able to contact those you have been in close contact with. This may include fellow students in your teaching bubble.
  6. Establishing your close contacts – we’ll need to know if you’ve been in close contact with anyone on campus in the last 72 hours. ‘Close contact’ includes being less than 1 metre away from someone for 1 minute or more, being within 2 metres of someone for more than 15 minutes, travelling in a car together, sexual contact or sharing accommodation. We’ll contact your ‘close contacts’ and advise them what steps they need to take.
  7. Isolation – to ensure the safety of others, you need to immediately self-isolate. You must not come to campus if you are waiting for the results of a Covid-19 test. If your test result is positive you’ll need to remain in isolation for 10 days, and members of your household (including flatmates if you are living away from your family home) will need to isolate for 10 days. If your test result is negative there is no need to continue isolating. More information on how to self-isolate from the NHS can be found here.
  8. Getting your test result – you’ll receive this from the NHS within 48 hours and you’ll need to let your contact tracer (a member of the Mental Health and Wellbeing Team) know the result immediately. 

Step two: What to do once you’ve received your test results

If your test results are negative, as long as you feel well and have not been told to isolate by NHS test and trace, you no longer have to isolate.

If your test results are positive:

  • The NHS test and trace system will send you an email or text and you’ll need to give details of your close contacts.
  • Our Mental Health & Wellbeing will be in touch with you, anyone you’ve been in close contact with and members of your bubble to offer support. If you’re isolating within University accommodation, we will organise food and other essential deliveries so you don’t have to leave your flat.

Step three: Completing a period of self-isolation/recovery

Keep isolating for at least 10 days from when your symptoms started. Anyone you live with, and other close contacts identified, must also self-isolate for 10 days from when you start self-isolating.

The Mental Health and Wellbeing Team will offer support. Support is also available through the NHS – read more here.

Download a guide to self-isolating

When can I come back to campus if I have had a positive test?

You can come back to campus after isolating for 10 days as long as:

  • you do not have any symptoms
  • you just have a cough or changes to your sense of smell or taste – these can last for weeks after the infection has gone

You must continue to self-isolate if you have these symptoms after 10 days:

  • a high temperature or feeling hot and shivery
  • a runny nose or sneezing
  • feeling or being sick
  • diarrhoea

If you have diarrhoea or you’re being sick, stay at home until 48 hours after they've stopped.

You can find more information on how long to self-isolate for on the NHS website here.

Support for students who are self-isolating

What to do if someone in your household has symptoms or is isolating

If someone in your household is well but has been told to self-isolate because they have been in contact with someone with Covid-19 outside the house, you can still attend campus.

Only if that person starts to develop symptoms should you stay at home and follow the advice from our Test and Trace team.

The government rules on self-isolation for those who have been in close contact with a Covid-positive person outline that if you are:

  • under 18 years old, or
  • fully vaccinated and not experiencing symptoms

you are not required to self-isolate, but you must take a PCR test as soon as possible. You are not required to self-isolate while waiting for your test result, but if your result is positive, you must immediately self-isolate. 

To be considered fully vaccinated you must have:

  • completed a full course of vaccination at least 14 days ago (two doses of Moderna, AstraZeneca or Pfizer, or one dose of Janssen), and
  • completed your course of vaccination in the UK.

Guidance for staff

Test and trace guidance for any staff member showing symptoms can be found on iCity