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Recover Out of Circulation

Gannett Health Services
110 Ho Plaza
Cornell University
Ithaca, NY 14853-3101

Tel: 607 255-5155
Fax: 607 255-0269

The goal of staying out of circulation is to give ill individuals the space and time to recover, while also protecting others from exposure to illness. Anyone with flu-like illness should get out (and stay out) of circulation as soon as symptoms arise. 

Stay at home and away from other people

  • No work  
  • No classes, labs, libraries
  • No dining halls or restaurants
  • No extracurricular activities 
  • No social gatherings and events
  • No public transportation

Stay home until you have been fever-free for at least 24 hours. 

  • Fever should be absent without the use of fever-reducing medicines. (High temperature is linked with higher amounts of virus, so people with a fever are typically more contagious than those without it.)
  • A cough may linger, but is not considered reason to stay out of circulation.
  • Going back to work or class too soon also puts a person at risk of a setback in recovery or worsening illness.  

Note: Students are encouraged to contact their instructors directly to notify each with the reason for absence and to discuss options for individual accommodations. If this is not possible, students may contact their Academic Advising Office for assistance and support.

What about masks?

  • If you are sick and live in close proximity to others, please wear a face mask whenever you can't avoid being within 6 feet of them. (Masks are available from Gannett.)
  • If you live alone, it is not necessary to wear a surgical mask unless leaving your home for medical care or other necessities. 
  • It is not recommended that healthy people wear a mask in order to protect themselves from flu viruses, unless they must be close to a person who is sick and cannot wear a mask.

If you must leave home for medical care* or other necessities

  • Keep a distance (6 feet) from others 
  • Be very attentive to covering coughs and sneezes
  • Put used tissues in the trash

*Most health care providers (including Gannett) will ask that you wear a face mask when seeking care for flu-like symptoms. Masks are readily available at the entrances of Gannett. If you have flu-like symptoms, please put on a mask as soon as you enter the building.

What would you do if you got the flu?

While everyone hopes they will be able to avoid infection with the flu, it's wise to plan now for what you might do if you were to get the flu.

Students: it's likely you would stay in your room, unless you need medical observation. So, think about your other options.

  • Could a family member come and get you so that you could recover at home? 
  • Perhaps a nearby friend or family member can offer a quiet space for you to recover? 
  • If you stay in your room (in a residence hall, house, apartment), who do you know who could bring food, drinks, and other supplies?
  • Would your roommate be more comfortable staying with a friend for a few days or in another facility? Or could you arrange your room so you can be at least 6 feet apart at all times?

If you make plans that involve recovering elsewhere, you should avoid public transportation and arrange for personal transport to get you to where you would like to go so that others are not exposed.

Non-urgent help  

Help is all around you. Any person with the flu can benefit from a little extra assistance while they are staying out of circulation. Students are encouraged to:

  • ask a friend to deliver drinks, food, and other supplies as needed

Students living on campus can also:

  • consult with residential staff who can provide assistance
  • ask a friend to pick up a sick tray from Cornell Dining