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Health Center

Health, Wellness and Testing

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To keep us safe and healthy, students, faculty and staff are required to follow these practices.

Last Updated: Oct. 13, 2020

Due to ongoing community spread of COVID-19 throughout all areas of the U.S. and the world, there is an expectation that some members of the Bentley community including students will contract COVID-19 this fall. The measures taken by the university are designed to reduce the risk to our community, but cannot guarantee that no infections will occur on campus. Every effort will be made to decrease the spread of infection which will require students do their part to assist these efforts. Every community member will make a difference by doing their part. If this environment does not seem appropriate for a student to live on campus, they may wish to learn remotely. It is important to understand that residence halls are considered a congregate setting at higher risk for spread of infection, and therefore our community must take extra precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 on campus. All health and safety recommendations planned have been created with guidance from public health orders.

Screening Testing for Bentley's On-Campus Population

Emergency Contact Information

Due to the serious nature of COVID-19, it's important that Bentley have up-to-date emergency contact and student contact information for every student. Please verify that your family emergency contact information, family address, student cell phone number and student off-campus address is up to date in Workday. Consider having a local contact near Waltham, MA, where you may wish to go if you are required to isolate or quarantine, if possible. Know the contact information for your personal physician, medical specialists, medication list and any allergies to medications or foods. Communication is key to keep our campus healthy.

Access to Campus

Off-campus students will not be permitted on campus until after Sept. 8 except to receive a COVID-19 screening test or if they have written permission from appropriate staff (e.g for work on campus). They will only be allowed if they have registered their intention to be on campus in the survey sent to students on Aug. 11, and if they have begun their screening tests. Off-campus students who don’t keep their weekly obligations to be screened will not be allowed on campus.

To change your access to campus, please complete the form below. Resident students are automatically included in the Screening Test Program and do not need to complete this form. Non-resident students who wish to come to campus must be enrolled in the Screening Test Program, and can do so using this form.

Change Your Access to Campus Form

Face Coverings

The universal wearing of face coverings is shown to reduce disease transmission and is one of several layers of public health interventions to reduce the risk of spreading COVID-19 on campus. As an extension of the governor’s COVID-19 Order No. 31 requiring face coverings in the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, Bentley University has adopted the following policy:

  • On the Bentley University campus, indoors and outdoors, all adults and children over the age of two shall cover their mouth and nose with a mask or cloth face covering, except in the specific circumstances detailed below.
  • Face coverings are not required: 1) in a private office while alone; 2) in a vehicle alone; 3) in student residence hall rooms, suites or apartments when only the resident(s) assigned to that room are present; 4) when you are eating or drinking in a dining hall, break room or other area configured for eating in accordance with distancing requirements [note: face coverings are required in those areas when you are not eating or drinking]; 5) while exercising using fixed equipment that is configured in accordance with distancing requirements; and 6) while exercising outdoors in organized activities controlled by Athletics, or Student Programs and Engagement, conducted in accordance with distancing requirements.
  • A person who is unable to wear a face covering on the advice of their healthcare provider due to a medical condition may be accommodated in accordance with the university’s Americans with Disabilities Act Policy for employees and the policies of the Office of Disability Services for students.
  • Non-compliance will be addressed in accordance with student or employee disciplinary policy.
  • This policy remains in effect until rescinded and may be modified from time to time based on the university’s evolving understanding of COVID-19 or standards put forth by local, state or federal authorities.

Watch a Video about Face Coverings at Bentley this Fall

Read more on face covering requirements from the Governor's Office and the City of Waltham.

Regular Self-Check

Students, on and near campus,will be required to do a daily health self-check to verify they do not have any symptoms of COVID-19. This requirement applies to all members of the entire Bentley community who plan to be on campus, including faculty and staff. We urge all students to contact the Health Center  by calling 781-891-2222 for any new symptoms of COVID-19 per CDC guidelines.

Currently, the symptoms include:

  • Fever (100°F or greater)
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Cough
  • Sore throat
  • Diarrhea
  • Loss of smell or taste
  • Muscle/body aches
  • Chills
  • Headache
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Fatigue

Student Daily Checklist         Faculty and Staff Daily Checklist

Maintain Physical Distance

Maintain 6 feet of distance from other people when on campus. Areas of campus including classrooms and dining areas have been reconfigured to allow for responsible physical distancing.

Seasonal Illnesses

With cooler temperatures quickly approaching, cases of seasonal upper respiratory illnesses such as the flu, common cold and strep throat are on the rise. During this time when all members of our community are consistently evaluating themselves for symptoms that may be related to COVID-19, the likelihood that an illness may suspected to be COVID is high.

Though in most cases (over 90% of the time) these illnesses are not found to be COVID-19, Bentley and the Health Center are acting out of an abundance of caution this flu season to ensure the health and safety of our entire community. One such measure is the process of asking residential students to quarantine or isolate when sick until a negative COVID-19 test result comes back. If a student is feeling ill and showing signs of respiratory illness, they may be asked to relocate to isolation housing or return home if possible until their COVID diagnostic test results come back, usually within 24-48 hours. That student’s roommate(s) may also be asked to quarantine in some cases depending on the student’s symptoms. This relocation will help prevent the spread of illness during the time when students are waiting for their test results.

When a student is moved to isolation housing, they are considered a “suspect case.” That means that they’re showing symptoms that may fall under the wide array of COVID-19 symptoms, but haven’t yet been identified as carrying the virus. If the student in question’s results come back as negative, the Health Center will work with them towards recovery, and most likely they will return to their usual housing location. Their roommate(s) will also be allowed to leave quarantine. Suspect cases in isolation or quarantine won’t be added to the COVID-19 Dashboard, as that is reserved for confirmed cases of COVID-19 on campus and their contacts. 



Personal Health

Wash hands for 20 seconds with soap and warm water as often as possible. When on the go, be sure to use one of the hand sanitizing stations that have been added across campus.  

  • Cough and sneeze into a tissue or your elbow. Used tissues should be thrown in the trash and hands washed immediately with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

  • If you don’t feel well, it’s important to stay home. Seek medical care for even a very mild symptom or symptoms.

  • Avoid shaking hands and coming into bodily contact with other people. 

  • Avoid sharing common items such as laptops, phones, tablets, pens, pencils, utensils, personal hygiene products, drinks, vaping/smoking materials and food. Clean these items regularly.

Bentley will recommend following public health guidance for all activities in the Boston-metro area. These include the recommendations listed elsewhere including small group gatherings, face coverings, physical distancing, hand hygiene and reporting any illnesses for appropriate medical care. Off-campus activities should ideally be limited to those that are necessary depending on current public health guidance. Travel out of state is not recommended unless necessary. Continue to follow Massachusetts Department of Public Health guidance for gatherings and travel.

Students should communicate with their personal health provider if they have a health condition to discuss on-campus living versus remote learning options. Students have the option to attend remotely if this is in their best interest. All students should have a 3-month supply of medications taken on a regular basis.

The Health Center is working with Osco Pharmacy to develop a process where medications can be delivered to campus and picked up at a designated mail room location. This service will be for residential students only. Students can set up an account with Osco to begin this process.

Watch a Video about Ways to Stay Healthy

Stay Home If You're Sick

If you don’t feel well or are experiencing even very mild symptoms, do not go to class or report for work. Students should contact the Health Center at (781) 891-2222. Faculty and staff should contact their healthcare provider and their supervisor.

Students should communicate with their personal health provider if they have a preexisting health condition to discuss on campus living. Students have the option to attend remotely if this is in their best interest. All students living on campus should have a 3-month supply of medications taken on a regular basis.

The Health Center is working with Osco Pharmacy to develop a process where medications can be delivered to campus and picked up at a designated mail room location. This service will be for residential students only. Students can set up an account with Osco to begin this process.

Screening Testing

All residential students will be required to have a screening test for COVID-19 administered by the university when they arrive on campus and then regularly thereafter. The university will pay for all costs associated with screening tests for residential students. For diagnostic tests administered when a student is sick with COVID-19, or if they have been exposed to someone reporting symptoms, health insurance will cover the cost. Please verify your student health insurance coverage. 

Students arriving to Bentley who are 18 years or younger at the time of their arrival on campus will need to complete the Consent to Treat Under 18 form, which requires authorization from a parent or guardian to receive health services.

In addition to residential students, all students who intend to be on campus at any time, as well as faculty and staff, will be screen tested on a weekly basis. 
The university will pay for all costs associated with screening tests for students who have registered their intention to be on campus.

Bentley is partnering with the Broad Institute to conduct screening testing. The Broad (pronounced brōd) test procedure uses a nasal swab in the front of your nose, which is less likely to cause discomfort. Results are expected in about a day.

Screening Location

Weekly screening testing will be conducted in the lower level of the Miller Parking Deck. Each week, students, faculty and staff will be required to go to the Miller Parking Deck after checking in online to conduct their regular screening. After entering the lower parking deck, those being tested will register at a check-in table where they’ll present their Bentley ID and receive a testing swab and labeled vial. They’ll then make their way to the observation table where Bentley staff will observe them self-administer their test. After swabbing the inside of both nostrils, they’ll place the swab inside the labeled vial and place it in a box on the observation table before going on their way.

The Miller Parking Deck site is designated for the weekly screening testing that will take place throughout the fall. Any students who are displaying symptoms of COVID-19 will be required to contact the Health Center to undergo testing at a different location. Faculty and staff displaying symptoms should stay home and immediately contact their health care provider.

Students, faculty and staff can schedule their screening tests through the Bentley Health Portal, Medicat. Please read this quick reference guide to learn how to use the Bentley Health Portal to schedule tests and to check in online for your appointment before arriving.

Test Results

Within 24-48 hours of your test, you will receive an email from prompting you to create an account in CareEvolve, the Broad Institute’s test results portal. Please read these instructions to set up your account so that you can see your results.

If your test result is positive, you will be contacted by Daniel Battle, Bentley’s occupational health nurse. Make sure your contact information is current in Workday so Daniel can reach you easily.

Watch a Video about COVID-19 Testing at Bentley this Fall

Screening Test Portal

Contact Tracing

If students or other community members are identified as a close contact of a person on campus diagnosed with COVID-19, they will be notified by a member of the Department of Public Health as well as the Bentley Contact Tracing team/COVID response team. Records of this information will be entered into a secure medical record system. Close contacts should be tested for COVID-19. A close contact is defined as a person with exposure to an individual with COVID-19 for more than 15 minutes and within 6 feet. Further information is available at the CDC website. If you are contacted by a public health official or contact tracing team member, please answer your cell phone to protect your health. Privacy of all persons involved will be respected; the name of the person with COVID-19 will not be revealed publicly or to close contacts by public health officials.

Isolation and Quarantine

If a student tests positive for COVID-19, they will be required to follow protocols established to isolate themselves. These protocols require that students participate in classes remotely for the isolation period and move out of their assigned housing to self-isolate, returning home if possible. For those unable to travel home, the university will provide on-campus isolation accommodations.

Per public health guidelines, Bentley will recommend a 14-day quarantine of close contacts of any sick residential student. This includes their roommates. These close contacts will also be tested for COVID-19, per public health guidelines. Quarantine for residential students will occur in an on-campus residence hall or at home, if the student prefers. Students living off campus should create a quarantine plan with their roommates, as they will likely need to quarantine together if one becomes sick. If a student tests positive, they will be expected to disclose their close contacts to the Health Center or public health officials. This disclosure will remain confidential.

Students living at home with their families or otherwise not returning to campus should follow their local public health guidelines for all COVID-related concerns. If students become ill and are unable to attend classes remotely, they should notify their professors and Academic Services via email. They should also follow their personal health care provider’s recommendations for isolation, treatment and testing.

Health Center: Sick Visits and Routine Health Visits

For the health and safety of the Bentley community, the Health Center is no longer offering walk-in appointments. Students seeking medical care should call the center to schedule an appointment. Wherever possible, we will utilize technologies such as phone calls, secure messages and telehealth services to supplement in-person visits, thus improving safety while ensuring access to health care.

As we prepare for the fall semester, we will refer many preventive health and routine visits — including preventive examinations, contraception, routine blood work/laboratory testing and vaccinations — to local medical practices, so that we can focus on the urgent needs of the campus during the pandemic. We can assist you with referrals to the many excellent health care providers in the area. We appreciate your understanding as we adjust our services to keep the campus safe and healthy.

If you are feeling unwell, please call the Health Center at 781-891-2222 and we will assist you with your concerns.

Vaccine and TB Screening Requirements

Massachusetts state law requires verification of students’ immunizations and TB screenings. Students who are new to Bentley or have missing requirements can find more information in our Health Center Forms.

For the 2020-21 academic year, state law requires influenza vaccination for all students attending university in Massachusetts by Dec. 31, 2020. Bentley encourages vaccination by Oct. 31, 2020. Influenza vaccination must be documented in the Bentley Health Portal by uploading documents verifying the administration and date of the vaccine. This will be added to the vaccines required for Massachusetts state vaccine compliance.

To obtain your influenza vaccination, you may attend the influenza vaccine clinics on campus operated by Osco Pharmacy if you are participating in the screening test program and permitted to be on campus. Notification of these clinics was sent by email to eligible students. You may also obtain vaccination at a local pharmacy including many of those listed in our health resources including:

51 Linden Street Waltham 
(781) 894-4522 

Osco Pharmacy at Star Market 
535 Trapelo Road Belmont 
(617) 489-6452 
Osco is accessible by campus shuttle 

Bentley is requiring all faculty and staff who are working on campus and part of the on-campus COVID-19 screening test protocol to receive a flu shot for the 2020-2021 season by Oct. 31.

Students, faculty and staff are required to bring their health insurance card with them to their flu shot appointment. 

Residential Students Traveling Off Campus

Bentley recommends following public health guidance for activities in the Boston-metro area, including residential students who travel off campus. These include the recommendations listed above for small group gatherings, face coverings, physical distancing, hand hygiene and reporting any illnesses. Ideally, off-campus activities should be limited to those that are necessary. Likewise, travel out of state is not recommended unless it is necessary. Please continue to follow Massachusetts Department of Public Health guidance for gatherings and travel.

Students at Risk due to Medical Conditions

Students can apply for a medically required academic accommodation if they have an underlying medical condition. Disability Services provides this service. We recommend that students speak with their physician about the decision to live on campus if they have a serious medical condition. All students have the option to learn remotely. All students who take medication on a regular basis should have a 3-month supply on hand.

The Health Center is working with Osco Pharmacy to develop a process where medications can be delivered to campus and picked up at a designated mail room location. This service will be for residential students only. Students can set up an account with Osco to begin this process.

Health Insurance

Massachusetts state law requires all persons to have adequate health insurance. We recommend the Student Health Insurance plan (SHIP) if your insurance is based out of state and you will be living in MA. The SHIP insurance provides students with excellent health coverage, which is especially important this year given that the COVID-19 pandemic increases the risk for illness. Know your health insurance coverage and which local hospitals are covered, as these may be limited if the student’s plan is based out of state. Please see University Health plans, our partner for health insurance, for more details.

Student Health, Counseling and Wellness

When you’re not feeling well, need someone to talk to, or just want to improve your well-being and self-care, turn to the Centers for Health, Counseling and Wellness at Bentley. Our expert staff are here to support your physical and emotional well-being.

The staff at the Centers for Health, Counseling and Wellness are available to talk to you remotely and we listen to your concerns and provide you with strategies to improve your health and succeed academically. Together, we’ll help you thrive.

Health Center

Counseling Center

Wellness and Health Promotion

Call (781) 891-3131 if you’re experiencing a medical or emotional emergency.

Faculty and Staff Health and Wellness

The Office of Human Resources provides support to help faculty and staff understand, improve and maintain physical, emotional, social and financial health.

The Employee Assistance Program
The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a Bentley-sponsored counseling and work life program available to all employees and their adult household members. The university's EAP provider is KGA, Inc., a well-respected consulting firm. Employee assistance services are designed to help with the issues of everyday life.

Additional Resources