Elon is currently monitoring the outbreak of monkeypox in the United States and around the world.
Over the past few years, we have learned a great deal about managing community health concerns through our recent experiences with the mumps and COVID-19. These lessons will serve us well, should monkeypox affect the university. As with previous infectious disease concerns, we will remain adaptive and responsive as conditions evolve. Elon’s Infectious Disease Response Team is meeting regularly, working closely with local and state health officials, and leading efforts to support this community.
While it is important to stay alert to emerging public health concerns, the current risk of getting monkeypox in the general population is low.
This page will be updated with information relevant to the outbreak and as an educational resource.
Sources of information
Additional information is available from the following sources:
- North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services: Monkeypox
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC): About Monkeypox
Testing for monkeypox is widely available. If a student, faculty, or staff member knows they have had close contact with someone who has been diagnosed, or begins to develop symptoms of monkeypox, they should avoid contact with others and seek medical consultation as soon as possible.
- Students can make an in-person appointment at Student Health Services or a virtual medical appointment through TimelyCare.
- Faculty and staff can make an appointment at the Faculty/Staff Health & Wellness Clinic or with a primary care provider.
Testing is also available with no out-of-pocket cost at the Alamance County Health Department, the Guilford County Health Department, or many other NC county health departments. Results are usually available in 2-3 days. Call for a testing appointment:
- Alamance County Health Department (336) 227-0101
- Guilford County Health Department (336) 641-7777
Additional information about monkeypox testing in North Carolina is available on the NC Department of Health & Human Services website.
If a student, faculty, or staff member is evaluated by Student Health Services or Faculty/Staff Health & Wellness Clinic and is suspected as a positive case of monkeypox, the staff will reach out to the Alamance County Health Department for next steps.
Who to contact if you test positive
All contact tracing for monkeypox is being conducted by the local health department.
- Students who test positive should isolate until they are contacted by contact tracers and follow the local health department guidance. Students should also contact firstname.lastname@example.org and they will provide additional guidance and resources for support.
- Faculty/staff who test positive should isolate until they are contacted by contact tracers and follow the local health department guidance. Faculty/staff should also contact Human Resources at 336-278-5560 or HRHealth@elon.edu for assistance and next steps.
Isolation information for students who test positive
Guidance for students who test positive will be provided by the local health department. Students who are required to isolate must follow all directions as mandated by local health department officials.
- Required isolation: The length of isolation for monkeypox will be determined by medical/public health officials and is generally the duration of the illness – often 3-4 weeks.
- Isolation location: Due to the length of isolation, students are encouraged to consider isolating at home (away from campus) if they can travel there safely in a personal vehicle, without use of public transportation, and avoiding exposure to others.
- Students who live off-campus and who cannot return safely home will be advised to isolate in their off-campus space and make arrangements with house/apartment mates to isolate safely.
- Students who live on campus and who cannot return safely home:
- Those who live in a single room with no shared bath will isolate in their assigned room.
- Those who live in a double room and/or share a bath will be moved to a designated university isolation space.
- Multiple residents who test positive for monkeypox can stay in the same room with designated bathroom
- Students with a confirmed case should disinfect all spaces after use until all lesions are healed.
- Meals: Students with meal plans will be able to arrange pick up meals-to-go through Elon Dining. Instructions will be shared by e-mail and the Quarantine Support Staff.
- Leaving isolation: Students may only exit their isolation space to pick up food, take a brief period of exercise outside 2-3 times a day, and seek medical attention. Students must stay more than 6 feet away from any person, wear a well-fitting mask and completely cover lesions.
- Notification to faculty: Quarantine Support/Office of the Dean of Students will notify faculty members via email and OnTrack roster of any student positive test results and periods of required isolation.
- Students should work directly with their faculty regarding missed classes and work.
- All absences are handled on a case-by-case basis between faculty members and students, following guidelines set in course syllabi. University policies related to absences and attendance are described in the Academic Catalog and determined by academic departments.
- Individual faculty members may work with students to ensure course learning outcomes can be met, but without any expectation of hybrid instruction.
- Faculty are encouraged to accommodate students as best as possible, but it is also possible that course goals cannot be met due to the nature of the course, the length of isolation, and the timing in the semester. In some cases an incomplete or course withdrawal may be required. In those cases, students should consult with their academic advisor and Student Care and Outreach to discuss options.
- Resources and support: Resources for students in isolation can be found on the Dean of Students website and support is conducted by staff from that office.
Isolation information for faculty and staff who test positive
Guidance for staff and faculty who test positive will be provided by the local health department. Those who are required to isolate must follow all directions as mandated by local health department officials.
Generally, the length of time for isolation with monkeypox is the duration of the illness – often 3-4 weeks. Faculty and staff who are mandated to isolate should consult with Human Resources at 336-278-5560 or HRHealth@elon.edu to determine next steps in work continuation and leave policies.
During the period of isolation, faculty and staff can elect to use accrued sick or vacation time, or utilize the university’s Temporary Continuity of Work Policy, which will remain available for as long as required isolation protocols are in place. The policy is also available for individuals who are caring for an immediate family member with monkeypox or affected by the closure of a daycare or school due to monkeypox.