The College of New Jersey Logo

Apply     Visit     Give     |     Alumni     Parents     Offices     TCNJ Today     Three Bar Menu

Respiratory Virus Guidance

The Center for Disease Control (CDC) has updated its guidance to align with common practices for other respiratory viruses. We are now at a different point in time with reduced impacts from COVID-19 compared to prior years due to broad immunity from vaccination and/or natural infection and readily available treatments for infected people. TCNJ Students, Staff, and Faculty should follow the established CDC Respiratory Virus Guidance:

  1. Stay home and away from others when you are ill. This means do not attend class or campus-sponsored events or report to work. 

    1. Symptoms of respiratory viruses that spread to others, such as COVID, Flu, and RSV, may include but are not limited to fever, chills, cough, headache, muscle aches, sore throat, and runny nose. 
  2. Test yourself for COVID and/or Flu.

    1. It is important to understand that testing remains essential to reduce the transmission of respiratory viruses.
    2. We encourage you to seek medical care when you are not feeling well, wear a mask around others, and get tested to determine the cause of your illness.
    3. Students, please upload a photo of your positive COVID test result to OWL to receive your Respiratory Virus Symptom Management instructions. 
    4. Regardless of your test result, we encourage you to stay home when you are sick or running a fever. When you return to campus, we urge you to wear a mask around others until your symptoms resolve.
  3. Return to your normal activities, including class and work, wearing a mask.

    1. You may return to your normal activities 24 hours after your fever ends (without the use of fever-reducing medications) and your symptoms are improving, but be sure to wear a mask around others for the next 5 days. 
  4. Mask and take added precautions over the next 5 days. 

    1. When you go back to your normal activities, you should wear a mask around others for the next 5 days to help reduce the risk of spreading illness.
    2. Practice physical distancing for the next 5 days
    3. Practice good hygiene 
    4. Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or elbow when you cough or sneeze.
    5. Wash your hands frequently.
    6. Clean high-touch surfaces such as countertops, handrails, door knobs, and TV remotes

Seek Medical Care and Treatment If You Need It

  1. Individuals with risk factors for severe illness from respiratory viruses should review the CDC guidance and seek healthcare immediately.
  2. Students can schedule a virtual telemedicine appointment through the OWL, our Online Wellness Link (
  3. Employees should contact their healthcare provider or visit a local urgent care center. 
  4. Treatments for COVID-19 and Flu can lessen symptoms and shorten the time you are sick.  They may also reduce the risk of complications, including those that can result in hospitalization. 

Respiratory Virus Vaccinations

Immunizations are a core prevention strategy to lower the risk of respiratory viruses. The CDC recommends that you stay up to date with your immunizations. TCNJ does not have a COVID-19 or Flu vaccination requirement at this time, but we strongly recommend that you stay up to date with respiratory virus vaccines each year.

Respiratory Virus Vaccine Clinic Information

Fall 2024 Respiratory Vaccination Clinics will be announced at a later date. 

Respiratory Virus Testing

It is important to understand that testing remains essential to reduce the transmission of respiratory viruses. 

To obtain Respiratory Virus at-home self-tests: 

  • A new over-the-counter Covid-19/Flu combination test is now available. The test is called Lucira. It is currently the only combination home test kit that tests for both COVID-19 and Flu and is available through vendors such as Amazon
  • Student Health Services will continue to have COVID-19 self-test kits available for free while supplies last and then for the low cost of $5 per test. Student Health Services can offer students combination COVID/Flu testing when indicated during a medical appointment. Students can schedule medical appointments through OWL, our Online Wellness Link.
  • If you or a family member, is uninsured, underinsured, on Medicare, Medicaid, or in the Veterans Administration (VA) healthcare system, you may be eligible for the new Home Test to Treat Program. This program sends you two Lucira COVID-19/Flu test kits free of charge.
  • Covid testing is still available in most local pharmacies