By Tom Kersten
In a pivot of University policy, students who test positive to Covid will from today be able to isolate in their own rooms, instead of being moved to self-contained apartments in ANU’s dedicated quarantine facility.
This latest development comes as multiple Covid outbreaks hit the University community.
The new guidelines will apply to all students, regardless of their room type. This means students who live in shared facilities, such as Wright and Bruce Hall, can continue to stay in their room.
Students who test positive will receive an email outlining requirements and precautions they must take during their isolation period. These consist of:
If you are in a room off a corridor and use shared facilities:
If you are in a multishare apartment, you must maintain appropriate separation from your roommates:
In an email sent to all students, Susan Helyar (Director of Residential Experience) said these revised isolation rules would “mean less disruption to you in a critical point in your studies as well as to ensure you get to stay in your community and home”.
Helyar assures students “our measures will ensure anyone on the same floor as you who is not COVID positive is able to live safely alongside you”.
An ANU Spokesperson told Observer these changes are not due to ANU’s Quarantine Facility being fully occupied.
During a Q&A Forum held yesterday, a University official said students would not have the option to move to a dedicated quarantine facility, even if they preferred this option.
This is due to “insufficient alternative accommodation” the official said.
As recently as late January the University described dormitory style accommodation as “not suitable for longer periods of quarantine of a few days or longer, unless all other residents on that floor are also in quarantine”.