What if I was in a dorm/building/restaurant where there was a confirmed case of COVID-19?

If you have been in the same enclosed environment but greater than 6 feet from a person displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, your risk for contracting COVID-19 is considered low. Specifically, incidental contact by visiting any of these locations would typically be designated as low risk.

For confirmed cases of COVID-19 on UB’s campuses, UB will work closely with Erie County Department of Health (ECDOH) officials to reach out to any students, faculty or staff who may have come into close contact with this individual. As the ECDOH conducts contact tracing investigations for positive COVID-19 cases, they will share information about locations visited by positive COVID-19 cases.

Even though your risk of contracting the virus is low, you should self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 illness. 

Members of the UB community should self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 by doing the following:

  • If you are sick with COVID-19 or think you might have it, stay in your apartment or residence hall room unless you need URGENT medical care. The most common symptoms reported include:
    • Fever of 100.4 F or higher
    • Cough
    • Fatigue
    • Other symptoms like body aches, sore throat, headache, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, chills, and shortness of breath can also occur.

Most people have only mild to moderate symptoms and are able to manage their symptoms at home.

If you develop symptoms of COVID-19, call your health care provider. Do not go to the office before calling — that will further spread the infection.

Students who are not feeling well are encouraged to consult with their family physician or UB Student Health Services, where the staff is prepared to answer questions and provide support.

Individuals with questions related to local health department guidelines should call the Erie County Department of Health helpline at 716-859-2929.

Follow guidance from your local health department. The local health department will conduct contact tracing. If you are identified as a close contact of an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19, a health department official will provide guidance on the precautions you should follow.

Visit the Resources section of this website for information from the New York State Department of Health on guidance for close and proximate contacts.


Everyone should practice social distancing and good hygiene. UB is asking members of the campus community to follow these public health recommendations to avoid the spread of respiratory illnesses:

  • Avoid close contact with sick individuals
  • Wash hands frequently
  • Cover your cough
  • Sneeze into a tissue
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands
  • Stay in your apartment or residence hall room when you are sick

For your day-to-day life in the coming weeks or months, this guidance translates to the following points:

  • Do not get together with groups of friends for parties, study sessions or hang outs. Even something simple like sitting on a couch with others to watch a movie goes against CDC recommendations.
  • Strictly minimize the network of people you maintain in-person contact with.
  • Limit shopping trips to those needed for essential supplies.
  • Avoid any unnecessary travel.
  • Continue to follow tips for frequent and thorough handwashing and sanitation of regularly touched surfaces.
  • Stay home if you are sick. Learn the CDC recommendations for what to do if you are sick.

Updated March 20, 2020