Isolation for Employees

Isolation requirements are for those who have tested positive for COVID-19. Employees who are mildly ill with COVID-19 can isolate at home during their illness. The purpose of isolation is to lower the risk of spreading the illness to others.

According to the New Jersey Department of Health and Princeton University policy, you are now required to self-isolate to protect others from potential infection.

Isolation Procedures

  • Please inform your supervisor or department chair of your work absence and if you have any work-related questions.
  • The requirements for isolation are imposed by the local health department. The actions you must take are listed below.
  • For assistance with all medical issues, please call your primary care provider, local urgent care center or call 911 if it is a medical emergency. Seek prompt medical attention if your illness is worsening (e.g., difficulty breathing). In non-emergent situations, you may also consult Teladoc (24/7). Learn more by calling 1-855-835-2362 or visiting

Isolation Procedures, through Day 5

Note: Start counting from the test date as Day 0

  • From when you are notified of your positive test result to at least Day 5:
    • Stay in your residence and avoid contact with others.
    • Do not go in public spaces or use public transportation, taxis, or ride-shares.
    • Do not go to work or participate in any in-person campus or community activities for the assigned period.
    • Monitor your temperature with a thermometer daily.
  • To protect your household members follow enhanced hygiene practices, which can be reviewed at If You Are Sick or Caring for Someone | CDC.

Isolation Procedures, day 6 through 10

  • The earliest date you will be able to return to campus is Day 6: {test date +6}.
  • You may return to campus on Day 6 as long as you meet the following criteria:
    • You have been fever-free (your temperature has been less than 100.4 F °/38°C without the use of fever reducing medications) for 24 hours.
    • Other symptoms you have been experiencing are improved.
  • If you determine, based on the above criteria, your isolation can be discontinued after 5 days, you must follow enhanced public health guidance for 5 additional days. During this time, you are required to adhere to the following:
    • Always wear a KN95 mask when you are around others.
    • Eat only in spaces where you can appropriately distance yourself away from others while your mask is removed.
    • Where possible, be mindful of keeping some physical distance between you and others. Open windows when you can, whether in a room or in a vehicle. Keep a seat or two between you and others in indoor spaces if you can do so.
    • If you develop symptoms during this time (between day 6 and 10 of isolation), speak to your health care provider for medical advice.

Contact Tracing

We ask that you reach out to your close contacts to inform them of their exposure. Close contacts are individuals whom you were within 6 feet of for 15 minutes or more cumulatively over 24 hours, within 2 days of your onset of symptoms, or positive test, (whichever is sooner) until you entered isolation.


We thank you in advance for your compliance with these isolation and contact tracing requirements, which are required by the Princeton Department of Health and are in place for your safety as well as the safety of others.

You can learn more about COVID-19 by visiting the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) website.

For information about taking time off due to COVID-19, visit Human Resources' COVID-19 Days webpage.