In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, Ball State University has developed procedures in accordance with the CDC and Indiana State Department Of Health guidelines for testing, as well as procedures for the isolation, quarantine, and contact tracing of individuals who test positive for the virus. Ball State has partnered with IU Health for testing services and will conduct contact tracing under a Memorandum of Understanding with the Delaware County Health Department.

The following documents and frequently asked questions provide an overview of the testing and tracing services provided to faculty, staff, and students within the Ball State University community. The specific procedures and processes depend upon whether the person who has tested positive is a residential student, a non-residential student, or an employee.

Self-Report Positive Results

Students and employees who received positive test results from any provider other than the University's Student Health Center or IU Health must self-report that they have tested positive through the Ball State COVID-19 self-reporting form. (Those who are tested at the Student Health Center do not need to complete this form.)

Complete the Form

Frequently Asked Questions

Students
The roommate may be identified as a “close contact” and will be required to quarantine for 14 days and monitor their symptoms. The student needs to submit a report to the Dean of Students to notify them that they are in quarantine. The Dean of Students will provide the student with important information for the quarantine period and notify faculty that the student will be in quarantine.

If the positive roommate was tested at the Health Center or IU Health, they do not need to report their test result. If they got tested at any other testing site, they must report the positive test result to the University by completing the self-reporting form.
Any individual who is tested for COVID-19 must quarantine pending their test results. The health care provider will provide the appropriate guidance depending on the results of the test. A student should NOT attend class, work, social events, or interact with other people during this period even if they feel healthy. If the student was a close contact of a positive case and got tested, they will be required to quarantine for 14 days whether or not the test result is negative.

The University will perform contact tracing under the authority of the Delaware County Health Department. Contact tracers will contact students and employees who have received a positive COVID-19 test and help them identify all close contacts from 48 hours prior to the onset of symptoms or the date of testing. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Indiana State Department of Health define close contact as being within six feet of an infected individual for at least 15 minutes.

Classrooms have been configured so no two students will sit within six feet of each other, or within six feet of the instructor. Therefore, a student who tested positive would not be considered a close contact with other students or the instructor unless physical distancing rules are not followed.

Students with symptoms who present at the University's Student Health Center or IU Health for a COVID-19 test must quarantine pending the results of their test. IU Health will provide test results, typically within 48 to 72 hours. When a student is instructed to quarantine, the Medical Director of the Student Health Center will notify the Dean of Students. The Dean of Students notifies the student's course instructors that the student will be absent from class and requests that they accommodate the student's continued participation in the course.

Students may continue to participate in remote learning while in quarantine. In the event a student tests positive, the student will remain in isolation until released by a health care provider.

As long as all physical distancing rules are followed, there is no public health justification to move a course to remote learning because a student in the class has tested positive for COVID-19. All classrooms have been configured to maintain a six-foot separation between students and faculty.

Students and employees who present for testing at the University's Student Health Center or IU Health should typically receive their results within 48 to 72 hours. While waiting for results, students and employees with symptoms will be instructed to quarantine.

Within 24 hours of receiving the positive test result, the contact tracing team will contact the individual who tested positive and begin the contact tracing process. Additionally, the contact tracing leadership team will meet regularly to review new data and will provide a regular briefing to the president and a subset of the president’s cabinet regarding any concerns about clusters, trends, or groups. 

If a faculty member hears directly from a student that the student has tested positive for COVID-19 through a testing facility other than the University's Student Health Center or IU Health, the faculty member should advise the student to self-report to Ball State through the COVID-19 self-reporting form, which will be available at a later date. Once submitted, the self-reporting form will ensure the student is contacted and instructed to isolate. Contact tracing will begin and support services will be arranged for the student.

Classrooms have been configured so no two students will sit within six feet of each other, or within six feet of the instructor. Therefore, a student who tested positive would not be considered a close contact with other students or with the instructor as long as physical distancing rules are followed.

A team consisting of a representative of the Delaware County Health Department, the Medical Director of the Ball State University Student Health Center, the Director of Clinical Operations for the College of Health, and a faculty member from the College of Health will conduct a regular review of test results. This team will monitor for any patterns or clusters of positive cases within the University community that may require administrative action. The president and a subset of the president's cabinet will receive a regular briefing from the team and determine if any additional measures at the group, unit, or institutional level are appropriate.

To keep the campus community apprised of COVID-19 activity on our campus, we are developing an online dashboard that will be available starting Monday, August 17. Our dashboard will be updated regularly and will include statistical information about students and employees who have been tested at the University's Student Health Center or through our partnership with IU Health. To avoid duplication, our internal dashboard will not include information about students and employees who may have been tested at other locations. Our website, however, will provide a link to the Indiana State Department of Health online dashboard which contains current information about COVID-19 in Delaware County and every other county in Indiana. The dashboard will be the University’s primary mechanism for communicating day-to-day updates regarding COVID-19.

View the dashboard.

Appropriately wearing a face mask over your mouth and nose combined with hand washing can play a very important role in reducing your chances of contacting the virus. The CDC and the Indiana State Department of Health recommend masks as a simple barrier to help prevent respiratory droplets from traveling into the air and onto other people from coughing, sneezing, talking, or raising your voice. When combined with physical distancing of at least six feet and good hygiene including regular hand washing, masks are a powerful tool in helping to stop the spread of COVID-19.

Residential on-campus students waiting for test results will be quarantined until their test results become available. Students who test positive will be isolated until they are released by a health care professional.

Non-residential students will be required to quarantine and isolate at their off-campus locations or homes until they are cleared by a health care professional. During quarantine and isolation, both residential and non-residential students will be offered assistance from a “navigator” who will remotely serve as a resource and assist the student with academic support.

Contact tracers will notify persons listed as close contacts by phone. It is important to keep your personal information up-to-date with the University in order to promptly respond to contact tracers if you are called. If you have caller ID, your phone will display the caller as ‘BSU COVID TEAM’ or (765) 285-7662.

In addition to Ball State contact tracers, individuals who test positive may be contacted by contact tracers from the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH). If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, a case investigator from the health department may call you to check in on your health, discuss who you’ve been in contact with, and ask where you spent time while you may have been infectious and able to spread COVID-19 to others. You will first receive a text message from 877-548-3444 followed by a call from a contact tracer. The number on the caller ID will show as 833-670-0067 or may display as “IN Health COVID.” When you are contacted, please answer the call so we can protect the health of others who may have been exposed.

Contact tracers will instruct close contacts who are symptomatic to get tested. A person who has been identified as a close contact must follow the instructions of the health care provider, including whether to and how to quarantine, how to monitor symptoms, and whether to be tested for the virus.

Students and employees who received positive test results from any provider other than the University's Student Health Center or IU Health must self-report that they have tested positive through the Ball State COVID-19 self-reporting form. Those who are tested at the Student Health Center do not need to complete this form.

The Muncie Sanitary District and other municipalities in Indiana are participating in a special project to investigate the use of COVID-19 RNA testing in wastewaters as a potential early indicator of coronavirus outbreaks. This project is focused specifically on communities with universities having more than 1,000 students living on campus.

The Muncie Bureau of Water Quality will be collecting samples three times per week for 10 to 11 weeks from utility holes around the Ball State campus. Samples will also be collected at the MSD’s wastewater treatment facility. Infectious disease experts will then assist in interpreting the results to look for spikes in COVID-19 RNA as an early indicator of an outbreak of COVID-19 within Muncie. 

The hope is that this may increase local reaction time by giving as much as one week of warning before symptomatic individuals begin to appear. If test results indicate evidence of a potential spike in samples from Ball State University, the Muncie Sanitary District will notify Ball State officials immediately.

Employees who received positive test results from any provider other than the University's Student Health Center or IU Health must self-report that they have tested positive through the Ball State COVID-19 self-reporting form. Those who are tested at the Student Health Center or IU Health do not need to complete this form. The employee should notify his/her supervisor and contact Human Resource Services regarding telework and leave options.

Inform your supervisor that you have been cleared to return to work and complete the employee health screening and self-certification assessment.

Work areas and offices have been configured with posted signs and notices to help everyone maintain six feet of distance between those working in a common area for an extended period. Your work environment should not require you to be within six feet others for more than 15 minutes. A co-worker who tests positive will not be a close contact unless physical distancing rules are not followed. This is why physical distancing of at least six feet is so important.

Employees who present for testing at the University's Student Health Center or IU Health should typically receive their results within 48 to 72 hours. While waiting for results, employees with symptoms will be instructed to quarantine. Employees who are instructed to quarantine should inform his/her supervisor and discuss teleworking options. If an employee is unable to telework, s/he should contact Human Resource Services regarding leave options.

Within 24 hours of receiving the positive test result, the contact tracing team will contact the individual who tested positive and begin the contact tracing process. Additionally, the contact tracing leadership team will meet regularly to review new data and will provide a regular briefing to the president and a subset of the president’s cabinet regarding any concerns about clusters, trends, or groups.

Contact tracers will notify persons listed as close contacts by phone. It is important to keep your personal information up-to-date with the University in order to promptly respond to contact tracers if you are called. If you have caller ID, your phone will display the caller as ‘BSU COVID TEAM’ or (765) 285-7662.

Contact tracers will instruct close contacts who are symptomatic to get tested. A person who has been identified as a close contact must follow the instructions of the health care provider, including whether to and how to quarantine, how to monitor symptoms, and whether to be tested for the virus.

The University will perform contact tracing under the authority of the Delaware County Health Department. Contact tracers will contact employees who have received a positive COVID-19 test and help them identify all close contacts from 48 hours prior to the onset of symptoms or the date of testing. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Indiana State Department of Health define close contact as being within six feet of an infected individual for at least 15 minutes.

In addition to Ball State contact tracers, individuals who test positive may be contacted by contact tracers from the Indiana State Department of Health (ISDH). If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, a case investigator from the health department may call you to check in on your health, discuss who you’ve been in contact with, and ask where you spent time while you may have been infectious and able to spread COVID-19 to others. You will first receive a text message from 877-548-3444 followed by a call from a contact tracer. The number on the caller ID will show as 833-670-0067 or may display as “IN Health COVID.” When you are contacted, please answer the call so we can protect the health of others who may have been exposed.

Classrooms have been configured so no two students will sit within six feet of each other, or within six feet of the instructor. Therefore, a student who tested positive would not be considered a close contact with other students or the instructor unless physical distancing rules are not followed.

Students with symptoms who present at the University's Student Health Center or IU Health for a COVID-19 test must quarantine pending the results of their test. IU Health will provide test results, typically within 48 to 72 hours. When a student is instructed to quarantine, the Medical Director of the Student Health Center will notify the Dean of Students. The Dean of Students notifies the student's course instructors that the student will be absent from class and requests that they accommodate the student's continued participation in the course.

Students may continue to participate in remote learning while in quarantine. In the event a student tests positive, the student will remain in isolation until released by a health care provider.

As long as all physical distancing rules are followed, there is no public health justification to move a course to remote learning because a student in the class has tested positive for COVID-19. All classrooms have been configured to maintain a six-foot separation between students and faculty.

If a faculty member hears directly from a student that the student has tested positive for COVID-19 through a testing facility other than the University's Student Health Center or IU Health, the faculty member should advise the student to self-report to Ball State through the COVID-19 self-reporting form, which will be available at a later date. Once submitted, the self-reporting form will ensure the student is contacted and instructed to isolate. Contact tracing will begin and support services will be arranged for the student.

Classrooms have been configured so no two students will sit within six feet of each other, or within six feet of the instructor. Therefore, a student who tested positive would not be considered a close contact with other students or with the instructor as long as physical distancing rules are followed.

A team consisting of a representative of the Delaware County Health Department, the Medical Director of the Ball State University Student Health Center, the Director of Clinical Operations for the College of Health, and a faculty member from the College of Health will conduct a regular review of test results. This team will monitor for any patterns or clusters of positive cases within the University community that may require administrative action. The president and a subset of the president's cabinet will receive a regular briefing from the team and determine if any additional measures at the group, unit, or institutional level are appropriate.

To keep the campus community apprised of COVID-19 activity on our campus, we are developing an online dashboard that will be available starting Monday, August 17. Our dashboard will be updated regularly and will include statistical information about students and employees who have been tested at the University's Student Health Center or through our partnership with IU Health. To avoid duplication, our internal dashboard will not include information about students and employees who may have been tested at other locations. Our website, however, will provide a link to the Indiana State Department of Health online dashboard which contains current information about COVID-19 in Delaware County and every other county in Indiana. The dashboard will be the University’s primary mechanism for communicating day-to-day updates regarding COVID-19.

View the dashboard.