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An arial view of "New South" : Tanaka, Sowle, Luchs and Carr residence halls.

OU announces plans for Housing Advisory System

Ohio University announced Monday a Housing Advisory system in response to increasing positive COVID-19 test results within residence halls.

Students living in residence halls will be tested once a week, but if infection rates increase, students may be tested more frequently, according to an OU news release.

The university will also be using a color-coded system to identify the risk of COVID-19 outbreaks in specific residence halls, similar to the Ohio Public Health Advisory System. Students will receive emails about their hall’s status.

Level one, or “yellow,” means there have been no known positive cases in a residence hall for the last seven days.

Level two, or “orange,” means 4.9% or less of residents in the hall have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last seven days, according to a university news release.

Level three, or “red,” means between 5% and 9.9% of residents in the hall have tested positive in the last seven days, but there is not evidence of a cluster.

Lastly, level four, or “purple,” means there is an outbreak in the residence hall, and those living there are at a very high risk of becoming infected. An outbreak is defined by 10% or more residents testing positive.

Students who are living in a residence hall that reaches level four will be on a “Remain-in-Room” plan until it is determined that the spread has been contained. 

When a student is placed in the Remain-in-Room plan, they are only allowed to leave the hall for medical appointments, COVID-19 testing, emergencies, contactless food delivery, breaks alone to spend time outside and the bathroom.

Visitors also won’t be allowed to see students, and residents should not leave the building to attend in-person classes or other activities.

If the Remain-in-Room plan doesn’t effectively control COVID-19 transmission, the Athens City-County Health Department may order a mandatory quarantine for all residents.


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