Frequently Asked Questions

Virtual Information Session

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What is COVID-19 (novel coronavirus)?

Coronaviruses typically affect the upper respiratory tract and can cause the common cold and pneumonia. In some cases, the virus can cause more severe symptoms. 

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Patients with confirmed COVID-19 infection have reportedly had mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms of: 

  • fever
  • cough
  • shortness of breath

CDC believes at this time that symptoms of COVID-19 may appear in as few as two days or as many as 14 days after exposure. 

How does the virus spread?

It’s not clear yet how easily COVID-19 spreads from person-to-person, but research on the coronavirus family indicates that these viruses spread most often through respiratory droplets (the moisture you emit when you cough or sneeze). More information about the source and spread of COVID-19 is available on the CDC's Situation Summary: Source and Spread of the Virus.

Is there a vaccine?

Currently, there is no vaccine available to protect against COVID-19.

I’m sick. How do I know if it is COVID-19 or something else, like the flu?

Coronavirus symptoms and flu symptoms can be similar, and we are currently in the middle of flu season.

The CDC recommends you call ahead to a healthcare professional if you develop a fever and symptoms of respiratory illness, such as cough or difficulty breathing, and have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or if you live in or have recently traveled to an area with ongoing spread. Tell your healthcare professional about your recent travel or contact. Your healthcare professional will work with your state’s public health department and CDC to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

I’m worried about someone who might be sick, or might have been exposed to COVID-19. What should I do?

If you know someone experiencing symptoms, please urge them to contact the local Health Department immediately. 

How can I get tested for COVID-19?

If you are a student remaining on campus, you should continue to practice social distancing (staying at least 6 feet from others, avoid gathering in groups). If you develop a fever or other symptoms and would like to be tested for COVID-19, you have the following options: 

Testing in Lot J of TIAA Bank Field

This federally-sponsored drive-through COVID-19 testing site is accepting all ages. To be tested you must be experiencing respiratory symptoms.

This site will operate seven days a week from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. for as long as supplies last. A doctor’s order is not required, nor is an appointment. Those seeking to be tested should:

  • Bring your own pen
  • Bring photo identification
  • Refrain from taking any fever-reducing medicine for four to six hours before testing
  • Remain inside your vehicle at all times

Prime Osborn Convention Center

This drive-through testing site is located at 1000 Water Street in downtown Jacksonville and is forDuval County residents (verified by photo ID). Before coming to the testing site, patients mustcomplete a screening and receive a physician order through the virtual health platform Telescope Health. Physician orders from other sources will not be accepted. 

The Prime Osborn testing site will be open seven days a week from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m., subject to availability of supplies. Patients do not need health insurance to get tested, and the cost for the Telescope Health virtual physician visit and test is $25 for those using the HERE4YOU promo code (the cost will be $49 for those not using the promo code).

To avoid long lines and to encourage social distancing, patients will be assigned to hourly time slots to come to the site for their test. Patients without an assigned time slot and order from Telescope Health will be turned away.

To get tested here: 

  • Bring your driver’s license and Telescope Health physician order.
  • Bring your own pen.
  • Stay in your car, do not roll down your window, and follow the instructions from staff or on the signage.
  • A staff member will perform a nasal swab that will be sent to a state-approved lab for testing.
  • Results should take 3-5 days and all who are tested WILL receive a phone call to the number entered during the Telescope Health registration process.

Ascension Health

Those who wish to be tested must first be pre-screened by a primary care physician. The pre-screen can be in person, over the phone or virtually via Ascension Online Care. If a patient meets the guidelines provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, then that patient will be directed to a testing site.

At the drive-through testing site, patients will remain in their vehicles at all times. While insurance information will be collected, no patient with a physician or provider order will be turned away and there is no upfront cost, according to Ascension. Nasal swab tests will be collected and sent to state-approved labs to be analyzed. Results can take up to a week, Ascension says. Positive results will be alerted to the Florida Department of Health. 

I am a student, and I feel sick. What should I do?

Contact your health care provider for guidance, and isolate yourself as much as possible, especially if you have a fever.

My roommate is sick. What should I do?

Encourage them to see their health care provider. Continue to practice good hygiene: wash your hands, don't touch your face, and remember to clean the surfaces you interact with regularly like your phone, door knobs, light switches, etc.

I am a faculty or staff member. I’m sick, but out of sick leave. What should I do?

First, stay home. Next, contact your supervisor to discuss your situation. Your supervisor will work with administrators to best address your unique needs.

How should faculty or staff handle students who say they are sick?

Out of an abundance of caution for the health of the campus community, please collect the student’s name and contact information and provide both to Student Affairs at

Ask the student to return to their room, apartment, or home and avoid contact with other people and pets. Let them know that Student Affairs will contact them to discuss their situation and recommend next steps.

What is the University doing to clean the facility?

The University’s Facilities Department has increased the frequency and scope of cleaning and disinfecting common restrooms and frequently used spaces on campus. Our facilities professionals use a medical-grade cleaning solution used in many healthcare facilities. For questions or concerns about cleaning protocol and services, please email