Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center

Research Program Coordinator Catherine Wren works at JHM’s first field-based clinical research village for studies on COVID-19 in an outpatient setting at Greenspring.

Students, faculty, and staff who feel ill or are concerned about exposure to the coronavirus may call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 833-546-7546, seven days a week, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.

When you call the JHCCC, representatives will discuss next steps, arrange for testing if needed, and assist in transmitting information to Occupational Health or Student Affairs. The JHCCC will also manage the process to identify and assist people who may have had contact with someone who tests positive.

The JHCCC is staffed by Johns Hopkins nurses, physicians, and specially trained nursing and medical students, but you are always free to call your personal primary care provider, and should continue to do so for family members who have symptoms.

What happens when I call the JHCC?

Callers will be asked a series of questions about their symptoms and possible exposure to others who have COVID-19.

If you meet the criteria set by the Johns Hopkins Infection Control Team in collaboration with Occupational Health:

  1. The JHCCC will arrange an appointment for a COVID-19 test for you
  2. You will receive instructions regarding quarantine before a test can be secured. Testing criteria are updated on a regular basis, and the most current criteria will be used when there is an assessment over the phone

If you test positive:

  1. You will be contacted by a health care worker to receive guidance regarding self-isolation, monitoring of symptoms, and general health advice
  2. Positive test results will be reported as required by law to the Maryland Department of Health, which will be responsible for the associated broad contact tracing

Investigation, contact analysis, notification (ICAN)

In addition to the state’s contact tracing process, the JHCCC will conduct a short interview with those who test positive regarding their on-campus activity and contact with other affiliates as part of our own investigation, contact analysis, notification process (ICAN), to help determine if other Johns Hopkins affiliates may have been exposed by an affiliate or in a JHU-associated environment.

The ICAN/JHCCC team will do everything in its power to maintain the anonymity of the test-positive affiliate. Johns Hopkins affiliates who may have had meaningful exposure to a COVID-19-positive affiliate will be notified, without being told the identity of the COVID-19-positive affiliate unless consent is provided. These additional affiliates will be advised to self-quarantine for a period determined by the date of the potential contact and exposure. If affiliates are not contacted by the JHCCC, it means the JHCCC has determined that no meaningful contact with or exposure to a COVID-19-positive affiliate has taken place.

If an employee tests positive

Supervisors of test-positive employees (faculty, staff, and post-docs) will not be notified of an employee’s COVID-positive status unless the employee gives consent to do so; the supervisor will simply be notified that the employee is off-duty. Test-positive employees must secure clearance for return to work from Occupational Health prior to returning to campus.

If a student tests positive

Students who have a test ordered and are asked to quarantine will be reported to their respective school’s student affairs representative as being “off-duty.” If a student provides consent, additional information will be provided. If the student tests negative, the school will be notified that the student is cleared. If consent is not provided by the student, a committee will review and evaluate the potential public health risk to others.

The committee can recommend and the university can elect to report the student’s COVID-positive status to the school’s student affairs representative without consent should the public health risks warrant such action. This will be a very rare circumstance. Test-positive students must secure clearance for return to class/campus from the Student Health Center prior to return.

Additional resources

From the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC)

Frequently asked questions

Will the university test each person who comes to a JHU location and trace contacts for anyone who tests positive?

At this time, widespread screening of everyone who comes on campus is not in place and currently is not planned. All undergraduate students who received special permission to live in campus residence halls this fall will be required to be tested upon arrival and on an ongoing basis throughout the semester.

Anyone who feels ill or is concerned about exposure should call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 833-546-7546, seven days a week, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. Callers to JHCCC who are ill or are concerned they may be infected with SARS-CoV-2 will be asked a series of questions regarding their symptoms and possible exposure to others who have COVID-19. For those individuals who meet the criteria set by the Johns Hopkins Infection Control Team in collaboration with Occupational Health, the JHCCC will arrange an appointment for a COVID-19 test. Individuals who test positive will be contacted by a health care worker to receive guidance regarding self-isolation, monitoring of symptoms, and general health advice. Positive test results will be reported (as required by law) to the Maryland Department of Health, which will be responsible for the associated broad contact tracing. In addition, the JHCCC will conduct a short interview with the test-positive affiliate regarding their on-campus activity and contact with other Johns Hopkins affiliates as part of our own investigation, contact analysis, notification process (ICAN), to help determine if other Johns Hopkins affiliates may have been exposed by a Johns Hopkins affiliate or in a JHU-associated environment.

The university will be testing a cohort of asymptomatic affiliates for the purpose of surveillance of the prevalence of COVID-19 on campus, under the auspices of an IRB-approved research study. This is not on-demand testing but will give specific Johns Hopkins affiliate groups the opportunity to volunteer to participate in this research study, provided they meet eligibility requirements and are willing to commit to the research protocol which will require routine testing. The university anticipates that surveillance testing will be done throughout the fall semester.

Last updated: Aug 27, 2020 9:10am

Who pays for COVID-19 tests, particularly if people need multiple tests after resuming activities on campus?

There is no cost to the individual being tested.  Since the passage of the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) on March 18, all forms of public and private insurance, including self-funded plans, must now cover FDA-approved COVID-19 tests and costs associated with testing with no cost-sharing.

Last updated: June 22, 2020 4:39pm

How does JHU learn if university personnel are ill or experiencing COVID-19-like symptoms?

JHU faculty, staff, postdocs, and student employees who are working on campus are required to complete a health screening attestation every day they are expected to be working onsite. In addition, employees who begin feeling ill after being onsite should contact the Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center at 883-546-7546 and go home.

Last updated: July 23, 2020 4:49pm

If I test positive for COVID-19, what information is shared and with whom?

If you are ordered for a test after calling the Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center, your supervisor or Student Affairs representative will receive an “off-duty” notice. If your test comes back positive, then the JHCCC’s ICAN team will automatically initiate a contact investigation.

The JHCCC ICAN team will follow up with anyone with whom you are determined to have had “meaningful contact” and instruct them to isolate. In some cases, if necessary to determine potential exposure, your name will be shared with close contacts with your consent. If you do not provide consent to the JHCCC, an analysis will be conducted to determine if there is a public health risk that presents a substantial risk of harm to others. If that is determined to be the case, the JHCCC will disclose the test results to your supervisor and anyone else who may need to know your identity in order to mitigate risk and limit exposure to others.

If you test positive for COVID-19 on a test not ordered by the JHCCC, you are not required to disclose your test result to your principal investigator or supervisor, but you are strongly encouraged to contact the JHCCC so that a contact investigation can occur. The test results of individuals who are not tested via Johns Hopkins are not automatically provided to a Hopkins contact investigator.

Last updated: July 23, 2020 9:02pm

How does the university learn if an employee or student working in a lab tests positive for COVID-19?

All students, faculty, and staff who are participating in on-campus activities should monitor themselves daily for any symptoms. Anyone who has symptoms associated with COVID-19 or who has concerns about exposure to COVID-19 is strongly encouraged to call the the Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center, or JHCCC, at 883-546-7546 to be triaged to determine if they meet the criteria for testing. In the case of employees, their supervisor will be informed that the employee is “off-duty” until cleared. In the case of students, their school’s Student Affairs representative will be notified that the student is “off-duty.” The student’s name will be shared with the student’s consent.

The JHCCC will inform you of your test result if you are tested at a Johns Hopkins facility. If your test is negative, your supervisor or Student Affairs Representative will receive a message that you have been cleared. If you test positive, you will remain “off-duty” and there will be no additional communication to your supervisor or Student Affairs representative until you are cleared. You are encouraged but not required to share the information with your supervisor or Student Affairs representative.

Last updated: July 23, 2020 2:00pm

How do I get cleared to go back to work or class after I recover from COVID-19?

Current CDC guidelines allow for anyone who is not severely immunocompromised to return to work if they meet the following criteria:

  1. At least 10 days have passed since symptom onset or asymptomatic testing
  2. At least 24 hours have passed since last fever without using fever-reducing medications
  3. Symptoms have improved.

Employees who believe they have met this criteria should call the Occupational Health Services at the Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center (410-614-6000) for an evaluation and clearance to return to work. Individuals who were first notified of the employee’s “off-duty” status will be informed by OHS that they are cleared to “return to duty.”

Students who need clearance to return to class should be instructed to do the following:

  • Students from the schools of Medicine, Public Health, and Nursing should contact University Health Services at 410-955-3250 for an evaluation and clearance to return to class. Individuals who were first notified of the student’s “off-duty” status will be informed by UHS that they are cleared to “return to class.”
  • Students of any other JHU school should contact the Student Health and Wellness Center at 410-516-8270 for an evaluation and clearance to return to class. Individuals who were first notified of the student’s “off-duty” status will be informed by SHWC that they are cleared to “return to class.”

Last updated: July 23, 2020 9:10pm

Under what circumstances will JHU conduct a contact investigation?

Contact investigations will be used to trace any JHU affiliates who have high-risk contacts of an individual who tested positive for COVID-19. This includes individuals whose contact with the possibly infected person was within six feet for 15 minutes or more.

A Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center ICAN (Investigation, Contact Analysis, Notification) team traces the infectious period, currently defined as two days prior to the onset of initial symptoms in symptomatic patients and two days prior to a positive COVID test result date for asymptomatic cases. High-risk close contacts will be notified of their exposure, asked to quarantine to prevent additional transmission, and monitored for symptoms through Occupational Health (employees) or Student Health (students).

Last updated: July 23, 2020 1:41pm

If a COVID-19 positive case is reported in the lab or classroom, will all the people who shared that space at the same time be tested?

Not necessarily. Criteria for testing is continuing to evolve. At this time, individuals will only be tested if they have symptoms associated with COVID-19. Meaningful exposure includes individuals whose contact with the possibly infected person was within six feet for 15 minutes or more during the infectious period.

Last updated: Aug 27, 2020 8:55am

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If you have symptoms

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