What to do if you have COVID-19 symptoms or a positive test result

Not sure what to do if you have COVID-19 symptoms or have been diagnosed with COVID-19? Read on for next steps. 

Do I need a COVID test?

If you have any symptoms, you must complete a daily health check. Use the BC Thrive Health App to determine if COVID-19 testing is needed. Testing is not recommended for adults and children with mild symptoms. Stay home until you feel well enough to resume your regular activities. Avoid high-risk settings such as long-term care facilities and individuals at higher risk for severe complications for 10 days after the start of your symptoms.

If you are uncertain and/or feel very sick, call 8-1-1 or contact your primary care provider. Note that sometimes symptoms may suddenly worsen and require urgent medical care. Pay attention to how you are feeling. If it becomes harder to breathe, you can’t drink anything or feel much worse, call 9-1-1 or go to your nearest emergency department.

Rapid Antigen Test Kits- COVID-19

Test kits (5 individual tests) can be picked up at any of the following locations with a student card. Kits are available for pick up every 28 days.

 B170 – Shq'apthut (the gathering place)

B193 – VIUSU

B255 – International reception

B300 – Welcome Centre

B305 – Campus Store

Employees can pick a test kit up in Human Resources with an employee card

B305 - Human Resources

Faculty if you have an overnight class/field trip planned you can pick up extra kits by contacting safety@viu.ca These can be used by anyone on the trip that begins to exhibit symptoms.

Please visit the BCCDC for more information on using a rapid test kit.

Who do I notify?


Notify your face-to-face instructor(s) if you will be absent. 

Student living in VIU Residence

Please notify VIU Student Residence if you develop any symptoms and begin isolating immediately in your room. Please make a list of any close contacts you have had 48 hours before you developed symptoms and notify them please also share this list with VIU Student Residence.


If you will be absent, notify your manager as per normal sick leave reporting. 

Managing your illness:

The BC Centre of Disease Control’s (BCCDC) website provides thorough guidance on next steps to manage your symptoms/illness.

If you test positive for COVID-19, you need to:

  • Self-isolate and manage your symptoms – you will need to isolate for 5-10 days depending on your vaccination status.
  • Notify your close contacts – you need to identify close contacts and provide them with instructions. A close contact is generally someone who has been near a person with COVID-19 for at least 15 minutes with no safety measures in place (no masks, no distance, indoors). Generally, you should notify people you live or share a room with and people you had intimate contact with.

If you are a close contact:

  • You will need to monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 and will need to self-isolate if you are not fully immunized. 
  • For more information, visit the BCCDC for instructions for close contacts.

Contact Tracing

Public health is transitioning to a self-managed contact tracing model due to increased case numbers and a shortened window for viral transmission to others. The BCCDC online rapid testing portal includes a question for employees and students working or learning at post-secondary institutions. We believe this information may be used to identify case clusters.  

For more information on COVID-19 and how to stay safe, visit the BCCDC website.