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Health & Wellbeing

Make Healthy Habits Your Routine

There are a few simple measures we can take to greatly reduce the risk and spread of COVID-19. Review the resources below for socializing, masks, vaccination, testing, contact tracing, symptom reporting, and hygiene. Together, these measures provide proven protection for our community members and enable us to monitor the public health situation and adjust our guidance as needed.

The University is closely monitoring developments from the Omicron variant and will communicate additional guidance if needed. In the interim, please follow the post-travel testing and quarantine policy, stay home if you feel sick, and report your symptoms or exposure in Crimson Clear. As always, testing, masking, and vaccination (along with boosters, for those eligible) remain our strongest defense.

Socialize thoughtfully

Vaccination, regular testing, and masking are the foundations of Harvard’s health and safety measures. As you engage across the community and socialize with friends and colleagues, please do so thoughtfully, with health and safety always top of mind.

Two students talking with masks on
  • Minimize contact

    Keep your close contacts to a minimum. The number of people who are less than 6 feet from you should be as low as possible. Engineer your activities with that in mind. If you need to interact with many people in a single day, keep your mask on, limit each interaction to under 15 minutes, and don’t stand closer than necessary.

  • Mask up

    Mask indoors and wear your mask properly, fitting securely over your nose, mouth, and chin. Ensure a secure fit around all mask edges. Remove your mask only around your household/suite if possible. Use common sense when outdoors. Wear a mask if you’re in a crowd or close to another’s face. If unvaccinated, you’re required to mask outdoors whenever you’re within 6 feet of other people; you must also maintain distance from others when dining indoors.

  • Eat & drink safely

    Dine in small parties of 2-4 people. Avoid table-hopping. Consider dining consistently with the same people rather than a different group at every meal. Practice “Consume & Cover” — Consume your meal and immediately mask up when done. Use the “Quick Sip Rule” — When drinking, lower your mask, take a sip, and then promptly cover your mouth and nose. If you’re taking your time between bites and sips, put your mask back on. Conversation, checking email, and other activities should be masked, even when you are in a designated indoor dining area.

  • Plan smart events

    Be creative! Plan events outdoors when possible; events where people split into small groups, rather than uncontrolled mingling; and events that don’t involve eating, drinking, or removal of masks (regardless of vaccine status). Learn more about event guidance.

  • Travel safely

    If you must provide group transportation for an activity, do so at reduced capacity to allow more distancing in the vehicle, and make sure everyone wears a mask.

Wear a mask, and wear it correctly

Indoors, everyone is required to wear a mask, regardless of vaccination status. All community members should carry a mask when coming to campus in case it becomes necessary to wear it. Requiring masks indoors makes our classrooms, labs, offices, and other campus spaces safer for all of us.

Outdoors, fully vaccinated individuals are not required to wear a mask, but use common sense if you’re in a crowd or close to another person’s face. Unvaccinated individuals are required to wear a mask outdoors if you cannot maintain distance from others.

You may also choose to wear a mask in settings where it’s not required.

Detailed mask guidance from EH&SOpens new window

An illustration of a COVID-19 vaccine vial

Get vaccinated

Campus-wide vaccination is the best defense against the coronavirus. Harvard is requiring COVID vaccination for all community members. This includes students, faculty, staff, and researchers. And consistent with federal guidance, all Harvard employees, including those who are on 100% remote work status, must be fully vaccinated.

Harvard strongly encourages boosters for everyone who is eligible.

If you received the vaccine outside of Harvard University Health Services (HUHS), submit your verification to HUHS.

If you need to schedule an appointment for a vaccine, you can do so through the HUHS patient portal.

COVID-19 vaccine information

An illustration of a hand holding a test tube with a test in it

Test regularly

COVID-19 testing is a key part of the University’s efforts to reduce the spread of coronavirus, limit further mutation of the virus, and ensure our safety measures are working. All affiliates with an on-campus presence, even if infrequent, are required to maintain their assigned testing cadence.

Testing information

Crimson Clear logo

Pay attention to how you feel

Stay home if you feel sick. Use Crimson Clear to inform us if you have symptoms, have been exposed to someone with COVID-19, or have tested positive outside of the University’s testing program or HUHS.

Report your symptoms or exposure

Answer your phone

Timely communication is critical. Make sure your contact information is accurate in all University systems. Keep your phone powered and nearby, and answer all calls from HUHS. We might be reaching out as part of our contact tracing process to alert you about an exposure you’ve had.

Understand the contact tracing process

Wash your hands often

Use soap and water with 20 seconds of rubbing, or use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer. Do this before and after touching anything that needs to be touched by other people, and before eating, drinking, or touching your face or face covering.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Cough/sneeze into a tissue or your sleeve.
  • Disinfect frequently-touched objects and surfaces.

How to stop the spread of germsOpens new window