Return to Learn

Health Monitoring and Reporting

Social responsibility

Consistently wearing a mask, practicing social distancing, and washing your hands reduces risk. If everyone on campus adheres to this practice, then risk is lowered. Risk is everywhere during a global pandemic. Everyone needs to adhere to socially responsible choices regardless of location and follow guidelines for their protection and the protection of others.

Daily health monitoring

  • All residential students and commuter students attending in-person classes are strongly encouraged to utilize the Covid Symptom Tracker in the Medicat Patient Portal COVID-19 tab every day before leaving their residence. A positive response on the daily tracker will display instructions and automatically prompts contact from Health Services. This is a public health crisis so it is very important to answer. 

  • Students who feel unwell may also use the Medicat Patient Portal appointment tab to initiate telephone triage with a nurse. Health Services will operate by appointment only, no walk-ins.

  • For acute illness that results in absence from in-person classes, Health Services will notify the Dean of Students Office that provides official absence notifications to Academic Affairs. Health Services will only share dates of absence regardless of the health related issue. No health details will be shared. The Dean of Students Office will issue an absence notification (dates only, not condition) to students’ faculty. Should a student’s condition related to COVID-19 change, the student must communicate that information to Health Services who will notify the Dean of Students Office of a change in dates for the quarantine or isolation period. Students should immediately communicate this information to Health Services by emailing

  • After receiving an absence notification from the Dean of Students Office, faculty will reach out to students to clarify remote access information for the course, should the student be well enough to participate virtually.

  • Students who obtain COVID-19 testing in the community must immediately notify Health Services of the test date by emailing and report their results.

COVID-19 symptoms

According to CDC, symptoms of COVID-19 include:

  • Fever greater than 100.4 °F
  • Chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

If you are experiencing symptoms or are sick, do not go to work or class.  If you become ill while at work or in class, go home or to your room immediately and contact your healthcare provider.

For employees, notify your supervisor you are unable to work and contact Human Resources, Employee Diversity, and Wellness at indicating a phone number that an HR representative can reach you or call 803/323-2273 and indicate your need to discuss a COVID-related situation. An HR representative will contact you with additional information and instructions. For students please initiate nurse consultation through the Patient Portal. Regardless of where testing occurs, students must notify Health Services when they seek testing and of a positive test by emailing

It is important to act as if everyone may be infected and consistently practice these preventative behaviors:

  • Wear a mask every time you are outside of your home or individual office. Winthrop and the City of Rock Hill require masks.
  • Maintain at least 6 feet distance from others at all times
  • Wash your hands with soap and water (hand sanitizer is a substitute only when soap and water are not immediately available)
  • Monitor your health for any changes daily, including a fever of 100.4°F degrees or higher
  • Stay home if you feel unwell and seek medical consultation


If a person is experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or has had close contact with someone who has been diagnosed, they should call their healthcare provider. If they do not have a provider in the area that can administer a test, they can visit the DHEC website to check for mobile test sites in the area or permanent testing locations. Students experiencing symptoms can initiate a nurse consultation through the Patient Portal or email Health Services will offer appointment-based diagnostic tests to students who meet criteria at no charge.

Winthrop hosts surveillance testing twice a month during the semester and once per month during summer. This saliva test is free and open to all students, faculty, staff, and campus affiliates. The schedule and instructions can be found here along with instructions for how to register and prepare. While voluntary, it is important to test once a month if you are out and about in the community, including on campus. Surveillance testing is for individuals who are not experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19.

Contact tracing

Winthrop is working closely with the regional SCDHEC team about quarantine and isolation protocols. A positive COVID-19 test is a reportable condition. Community providers who administer the COVID-19 test are required to report positive results to SCDHEC. Health Services will report positive cases to SCDHEC. Due to the prevalence of COVID infections in the community, it is unlikely for SCDHEC to call everyone for contact tracing. When Health Services is notified of a positive student, a nurse will contact the student to provide instructions and gather close contact information for campus contacts while infectious. “Close contact” is defined by the CDC as someone who was within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period starting from 2 days before illness onset (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to test specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated. This is a public health crisis, so it is very important to respond.

Quarantine/Isolation requirements

Quarantine keeps someone who might have been exposed to the virus away from others.

Isolation separates people who are infected with the virus from people who are not infected.

Residential students will be required to immediately return home to complete quarantine or isolation. Exceptions include residential students from outside the country or residential students from outside of South Carolina who cannot safely return home. Residential students must submit a Return To Campus Plan to Residence Life as a proactive measure in the event they are impacted by COVID-19 and must leave campus immediately. Responses will remain confidential and will only be accessible by Residence Life and Health Services staff on a need to know basis. Students who return home for quarantine or isolation are expected to follow up with their personal provider for any COVID-related care and notify Health Services at of any changes in their condition impacting their return to in-person instruction.

Return to In-Person Instruction

Health Services will communicate with affected students in quarantine or isolation on campus daily; therefore, staff will not issue a letter of clearance to return to class. Should a student’s condition change, Health Services will notify the Dean of Students Office of a change in dates for the quarantine or isolation period. Students who return home for quarantine or isolation are expected to follow up with their personal provider for any COVID-related care and notify Health Services of any changes in their condition impacting their return to in-person instruction.

Flu shot recommendation

Winthrop is recommending that members of the university community receive a flu shot when it becomes available. Influenza (Flu) and COVID-19 are both contagious respiratory illnesses, but they are caused by different viruses. COVID-19 is caused by infection with a new coronavirus (called SARS-CoV-2), and flu is caused by infection with influenza viruses. Because symptoms of flu and COVID-19 are very similar, it may be hard to tell the difference between them based on symptoms alone, and testing may be needed to help confirm a diagnosis. Getting a flu vaccine is important to reduce the potential for or severity of flu symptoms. CDC recommends that all people 6 months and older get a yearly flu vaccine. Please contact your pharmacy for flu vaccine availability. For a $25 charge to student accounts, Health Services offers a quadrivalent flu vaccine. Students can schedule at flu shot at Health Services through the Patient Portal.