Weekly Surveillance Testing

To keep our campus community safe, UB is committed to mandatory weekly testing for all unvaccinated campus community members who have regular on-campus contact.

Mandatory weekly testing will continue for those who

  • Are on campus AND have not been fully vaccinated 
  • Fail to verify that they have completed their vaccination series

On this page:

Are you vaccinated?

Fully vaccinated students and employees who have submitted verification do not have to participate in weekly testing. Find out how to submit your verification

What You Need To Know

STUDENTS: Consequences for Non-Compliance

Regular COVID-19 testing is an effective way to keep our campus safe, and disregarding this mandate will have consequences.

How To Get Tested

Mandatory weekly testing will continue throughout the summer.

Students: No appointment necessary. You must still register for testing with SUNY (Step 2). There is no charge associated with this test.

Faculty and staff: Do not need to make an appointment and should proceed to Step 2.

On the Day of Your Test:

FAQ: Understanding Weekly Surveillance Testing

FAQ: What To Expect

FAQ: Do I Need To Participate?

  • How does weekly surveillance testing work?

    This test, developed by SUNY Upstate Medical University and approved by the New York State Department of Health for use by all SUNY institutions, evaluates saliva samples collected from individuals that have been pooled (combined) with others. This pooled sampling enables researchers to test greater swaths of the community more rapidly while preserving the scientific integrity of the data.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • Why is UB testing students weekly?

    SUNY’s updated policy on surveillance testing requires UB to administer weekly testing of all students, faculty and staff who are on campus and have not been fully vaccinated or fail to verify that they have completed their vaccination series.

    Exemption from COVID-19 testing for fully vaccinated

    Students and employees who are regularly on campus will no longer need to participate in mandatory weekly testing upon verifying that they have been fully vaccinated.

    However, required weekly testing will continue for those who are on campus and have not been fully vaccinated or fail to verify that they have completed their vaccination series.

    Human Resources has provided guidance to employees on how to provide proof of vaccination. Students can submit vaccination documentation through the Student Health Services portal.  

    Updated July 13, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • Who needs to be tested?

    SUNY’s updated policy on surveillance testing requires UB to administer weekly testing of all students, faculty and staff who are on campus and have not been fully vaccinated or fail to verify that they have completed their vaccination series.

    Fully Vaccinated
    Students and employees who are regularly on campus will no longer need to participate in mandatory weekly testing upon verifying that they have been fully vaccinated. Human Resources has provided guidance to employees on how to provide proof of vaccination. Students can submit vaccination documentation through the Student Health Services portal.  

    Individuals Not Fully Vaccinated
    Required weekly testing will continue for those who are on campus and have not been fully vaccinated or fail to verify that they have completed their vaccination series.

    FOR STUDENTS, THIS INCLUDES:
    • Resident students.
    • Students who are taking one or more classes with an in-person component.
    • Students who use on-campus services such as dining, libraries or fitness facilities.
    • Student employees who work on campus.

    FOR FACULTY AND STAFF:

    Invitations to register for the weekly testing will be generated by the Daily Health Check data submitted. It is expected that all who come to campus complete a Daily Health Check before they come to campus. Individuals who work remotely do not have to come in for surveillance testing.

    The following employees should expect to receive an invitation to register with SUNY for weekly testing:

    • Employees who have attested several times through the Daily Health Check over the past two weeks that they are coming to campus.
    • Instructors teaching a scheduled, on-campus class with room, day(s) and time(s). Roswell Park and other off-campus classes excluded.
    • Employees identified by FSA as working on campus.
    • Employees with a paid, primary appointment in the following units/departments:
      • UPD.
      • Campus Living (VPSL Campus Living, Campus Living Director's Office, Campus Living Facilities, Campus Living Custodial, Campus Living Maintenance, Campus Living Housing Services, Campus Living Central Services, Campus Living Res Life).
      • Facilities (Campus Operations, Design & Construction, Environment, Health and Safety).

    Employees with a positive case in the past 90 days have been removed from the list for surveillance testing.

    If your schedule has changed and you are working remotely, you are not expected to come in for testing

    Updated June 4, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • What can I expect when participating in UB’s surveillance testing program?

    Before your test:

    • Be sure you have completed “Step 2: Register Your Test With SUNY.”
    • Three hours prior to your test: Refrain from brushing your teeth or using mouthwash.
    • Thirty minutes prior to your test:
      • Abstain from smoking, vaping or using smokeless tobacco products.
      • Do not eat or drink anything, including chewing gum, mints or lozenges.
    • Do not report to the test site if you are ill. Students, please submit an excuse form.

    Bring with you to the testing site:

    • Your UB Card.
    • Your personal electronic device (e.g., smartphone, tablet or laptop).
    • Your proof of Daily Health Check.

    What to expect:

    • Upon arrival, you will bring up the SUNY COVID test website where you will be screened for COVID-19 symptoms and exposure.
    • Once screened, you will check in at a registration table.
    • After you have been registered, staff will provide you with your test kit, which will include a saliva collection tube and a replacement cap.
    • Tests are self-administered, relying on a simple saliva collection vial to gather the sample to be tested. Sample collection should take no longer than 1–3 minutes. These are not nasopharyngeal tests, in which swabs are inserted through the nasal cavity.

    After you have completed the test, your sample will be combined with 11 other samples. That pool will be tested for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • Where will surveillance testing take place?

    There will be testing sites located on UB’s North and South campuses. More information about surveillance testing is available here.

    Updated September 1, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen location
  • What happens if I don’t participate in weekly surveillance testing?

    Regular COVID-19 testing is an effective way to keep our campus safe, and students disregarding this mandate will face consequences.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • To meet the weekly surveillance testing requirement (if I’m unvaccinated, or have not provided proof of full vaccination), do I have to get the test at UB, or can I get my own test?

    Students must be tested at one of the UB weekly surveillance testing locations. Students who have tested positive are excused from testing for three months. 

    Faculty and staff, please see the Human Resources memo.

    Updated September 17, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • What happens if I miss my reserved student appointment time for weekly surveillance testing?

    If you missed a scheduled appointment or are having issues making an appointment, please utilize the option for walk-up testing after following all outlined instructions. Please note: You will omit only Step 1 as a walk-up. You will still need to preregister, prepare for the test (i.e., no teeth brushing, etc.), and have your SUNY test registration information readily available on your phone or other device before entering the testing location.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen Missed Appointment reservation
  • If I begin to feel sick, what should I do?

    Use the Coronavirus Self-Checker to assess your symptoms.  If you experience any of these symptoms or feel unwell, quarantine as a precaution and contact your health care provider.

    If students need to miss class due to illness, isolation or quarantine, they must notify their instructor by email as soon as possible and no later than 24 hours after missing class. Residential students may request assistance from Campus Living to provide faculty notifications.

    Do not report to the surveillance test site if you are ill. Students, please submit a surveillance testing excuse form.

    Additional Guidance For

    Updated August 16, 2021

    sick illness Test screening
  • When will I get my test results?

    UB continues to utilize the pooled collection/testing protocol for the weekly surveillance testing program. Your pool results will typically take 24-48 hours to process. If your pool tests positive, the constituent samples will be tested individually, and it may take an additional 24 hours to receive your individual results. All result times may be subject to weather delays. The lab will send an automated message alerting you when your results are available. If you are identified as a member of a positive pool, you will also receive communication from the university.

    To view test results status

    To view surveillance testing results, UB students and employees may log into https://app.clarifi-covid-19.com/ (the same site used to register for the on-campus testing each week) and click from the main screen to view their test results:

    main screen of registration website for covid tests.
    • Pending” indicates that results are not yet available;
    • Presumed Negative” means that all 12 individuals in the pool were negative;
    • Pooled Positive” indicates that a specific level of virus was detected in the pool and subsequently, each of the 12 samples included in the pool will now be individually tested to determine the positive individual(s) in the pool;
    • Reflex Negative” means your individually-run test was negative;
    • Reflex Positive” means you have tested positive for COVID-19 and must isolate per Erie County Department of Health requirements.

    Updated July 11, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen results
  • My results are still pending after 48 hours. Why is this?

    While some delayed results are due to factors beyond anyone’s control, many of them are due to registration errors. To make sure you get your weekly surveillance test results promptly, do the following.

    Your registration profile

    Log in and update your registration profile at https://app.clarifi-covid-19.com/ and verify:

    • Did you chose SUNY BUFFALO as the organization
    • How you registered your name

    At the testing site

    Your registration profile MUST match your specimen label in order for testing to be complete. On the specimen label, be sure to:

    1. write your name exactly as it appears in your registration profile; and 
    2. write your date of birth as mm/dd/yyyy.

    Updated April 19, 2021

    pending Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen results
  • I received an email from “Support at Quadrant Biosciences”, what should I do?

    While some delayed surveillance test results are due to factors beyond anyone’s control, many of them are due to registration errors. An email was sent to all surveillance testing participants asking them to update their registration profile to make sure they receive their weekly surveillance test results promptly. Please do the following.

    Your registration profile

    Log in and update your registration profile at https://app.clarifi-covid-19.com/ and verify:

    • Did you chose SUNY BUFFALO as the organization
    • How you registered your name

    At the testing site

    Your registration profile MUST match your specimen label in order for testing to be complete. On the specimen label, be sure to:

    1. write your name exactly as it appears in your registration profile; and 
    2. write your date of birth as mm/dd/yyyy.

    Updated April 29, 2021

    Quadrant Biosciences pending Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen results
  • My pool tested negative. Does that mean I am not infected?

    Individuals in a pool that tests negative are presumed to be coronavirus-free; however, a negative test result only demonstrates that you and the others in your pool had undetectable levels of virus at the time that samples were taken.

    Research shows that the virus may take two to five days after initial exposure to reach detectable levels. You may have been tested inside this window, which means you (or anyone else in your pool) could have been infected but with undetectable levels of virus, or you may have been exposed to the virus after getting tested but before getting the results.

    Even if your results come back negative, you must continue to follow UB’s Health and Safety Guidelines. Wear a face covering, practice physical distancing, wash hands frequently and stay home if you feel sick.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • Will I have to quarantine while I’m waiting for my surveillance testing results?

    Participants in the pooled surveillance testing are not required to quarantine after specimen collection. However, if your pool’s test results are positive, your original sample will then be tested separately. This can be done using a portion of your saliva from the original sample. Results from the testing of the individual samples from a positive pool may take one to two days to be processed. During that time, you will be instructed to quarantine. If you are confirmed to be positive by the testing of your individual sample, you will be required to isolate. Individuals who test negative in the individual test will be released from quarantine.

    Students living on campus who are directed to isolate will be housed in designated housing. See Quarantine Information for Students.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen quarantine isolation
  • What happens if I test positive?

    If your individual sample tests positive, you will be required to isolate. Residential students have the option of doing so in designated on-campus housing. See Quarantine Information for Residence Hall Students for more information.

    If students need to miss class due to illness, isolation or quarantine, they must notify their instructor by email as soon as possible and no later than 24 hours after missing class. Residential students may request assistance from Campus Living to provide faculty notifications.

    Positive case notification

    • The spread of infection is expected to be low on campus due to vaccine requirements and indoor masking policies. However, positive COVID-19 cases on campus are anticipated.
    • Notifications will not necessarily be sent out for each reported case.
    • The university will continue to report the number of on-campus positive cases to the COVID-19 dashboard.

    If a student or instructor tests positive:

    • Vaccinated individuals identified by Erie County Department of Health as close contacts in a classroom or other indoor learning environment are advised to monitor their health and get tested.  Close contacts who are not fully vaccinated will be asked to quarantine.  As per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, fully vaccinated individuals who are identified as close contacts are not subject to quarantine.

    Monitoring health

    • All students and employees, regardless of vaccination status, should closely monitor their health, stay home if they develop symptoms of COVID-19 and get tested immediately.
    • Any student who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it via UB’s confidential reporting form.
    • Any employee who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it to their supervisor and to UB’s Office of Human Resources. 

    Updated August 23, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • What is the testing protocol for students, faculty and staff who have had a positive SARS-CoV-2 test?

    As part of the amended SUNY mandate, those who have had a positive PCR test should not participate in surveillance testing for 90 days from the date of their positive test. After that 90-day period, they will again be required to participate in regular surveillance testing.

    Students who have tested positive are excused from testing for three months. To be excused due to a previous positive, the student must provide documentation of their positive case using this confidential online reporting form.

    Faculty and staff, please see the the employee guide.

    Updated July 29, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • If I test positive, do I have to isolate on campus, or can I go home?

    Anyone who tests positive for COVID-19 must immediately isolate. UB is able to house and support residential students who require on-campus isolation.

    Anyone can complete their isolation at home provided that they:

    • Inform those whom they will be living with of their COVID-19 status.
    • Return home using private transportation (i.e., no planes, trains, buses or ride-hailing/ride-sharing services).
    • Follow their local health department guidelines related to isolation and quarantine.

    Additionally, anyone who has tested positive for COVID-19 and is isolating at home should use a separate bedroom and bathroom, if possible, to reduce the risk of exposing any other individuals in the home.

    Positive case notification

    • The spread of infection is expected to be low on campus due to vaccine requirements and indoor masking policies. However, positive COVID-19 cases on campus are anticipated.
    • Notifications will not necessarily be sent out for each reported case.
    • The university will continue to report the number of on-campus positive cases to the COVID-19 dashboard.

    If a student or instructor tests positive:

    • Vaccinated individuals identified by Erie County Department of Health as close contacts in a classroom or other indoor learning environment are advised to monitor their health and get tested.  Close contacts who are not fully vaccinated will be asked to quarantine.  As per Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines, fully vaccinated individuals who are identified as close contacts are not subject to quarantine.

    Monitoring health

    • All students and employees, regardless of vaccination status, should closely monitor their health, stay home if they develop symptoms of COVID-19 and get tested immediately.
    • Any student who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it via UB’s confidential reporting form.
    • Any employee who receives a positive COVID-19 test result should report it to their supervisor and to UB’s Office of Human Resources. 

    Updated August 23, 2021

    test positive report notify notification monitor health ill sick
  • I am an athlete, and am getting tested by Athletics; do I still need to participate in the weekly testing?

    No, the tests that you participate in are already included in the campus testing process.

    Updated February 5, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen
  • I had a COVID-19 test off campus. Do I still need to participate in weekly surveillance testing?

    Yes, students who tested off campus prior to their return to campus for the summer semester as well as those who participate in periodic off-campus testing must participate in weekly surveillance testing.

    Updated June 4, 2021

    Pooled Surveillance Test Testing Mass Screening Screen