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Important updates to the UMMS travel policy (March 16)

UMass Medical School Communications

March 16, 2021

For more than a year, we have closely monitored federal and state guidance as well as local COVID-19 epidemiology in shaping safety policies and practices for members of the UMass Medical School community. This has allowed our critical educational and research activities to continue, while reducing health risks on our campuses.

While all travel remains discouraged, today we are announcing a new travel policy that takes effect immediately. Please see the complete UMMS Travel Policy for full details. When travel is necessary, please follow the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance concerning safer travel during COVID-19.

Domestic travel

All UMMS employees and students will now be required to adhere to the Massachusetts Travel Order, which requires non-exempt individuals who travel to higher risk states to obtain a COVID-19 PCR test up to 72 hours prior to return or test upon return with quarantine until a negative COVID-19 test is obtained.

Individuals who are fully vaccinated no longer need to quarantine or be tested prior to returning to work. Upon return from domestic travel, all employees/students working in medical school sites are required to schedule a surveillance test in the first 24 hours after return to work and resume weekly testing regardless of vaccination status. Please note that individuals are considered fully vaccinated 14 days after receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine or 14 days after receiving the second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine.

University-sponsored domestic travel will now be allowed with prior approval from your supervisor and adherence to the Massachusetts Travel Order.

International travel

All UMMS employees and students traveling internationally, regardless of vaccination status, must follow CDC guidelines, including requirements for testing and quarantine.

University-sponsored international travel may be permitted on a case-by-case basis and requires pre-approval from the Provost. Personal international travel remains discouraged.

Prior to any travel

Before any out-of-state travel, employees and students must complete a UMMS/UMMHC travel form and are advised to review the current federal and Massachusetts guidance, which can change at any time.  

Health and safety precautions

Everyone – vaccinated or not – must continue to follow all COVID-19 safety protocols.

  • If COVID-19 symptoms develop at any time, stay home, call Employee Health Services at (508) 793-6400 or Student Health Services at (508) 334-2818.
  • Stay physically distant when possible.
  • Wash your hands frequently.
  • Always wear a mask, indoors and outdoors, while on campus, even in elevators, parking garages and when waiting for the garage shuttles. The only time you may remove your mask is when you are alone in your office. Please dispose of masks responsibly.
  • Continue weekly COVID-19 surveillance testing if you are on campus two or more days a week.

All UMMS COVID-19 guidance, forms and resources continue to be available at https://umassmed.edu/coronavirus/.