Updated COVID-19 Protocol: Increased Testing Frequency and Post-Travel Testing

September 08, 2021


Updated: September 10, 2021


To: GW Community Members

As described in GW’s Onward plan, the university’s Medical Advisory Group—comprising medical and health experts—continually monitors and evaluates the latest data about COVID-19 transmission in our community, as well as local and national public health guidance. As COVID-19 rates rise and there is data to suggest vaccines may be less effective over time, the university is updating its COVID-19 protocols as follows:

  • Increase the COVID-19 testing frequency for vaccinated individuals to twice monthly or every 15 days. Those individuals with an exemption to GW’s vaccine requirement and who are unvaccinated will continue with weekly testing.
  • Strongly recommend that all students, faculty and staff receive a COVID-19 test upon return from travel outside of D.C., Maryland or Virginia.

Details on these recommendations are below.

Increased COVID-19 Testing for Vaccinated Individuals 

Beginning Sept. 15, the COVID-19 testing cycle for all students, faculty and staff will change from every 30 days to every 15 days. To determine your current COVID-19 test due date, log into the medical portal and select “show badge” on the home screen. Your next testing due date will be displayed (see red box below).



screenshot of green clearance status badge indicating the user is vaccinated





Previous Test Due Date New Test Due Date
September 13 - September 30

Your testing cadence will be updated to every 15 days

 the day after your next scheduled test
October 1 September 16
October 2 September 17
October 3 September 20
October 4 September 20

If your previous test due date was October 5 or later, please check the medical portal after September 15 to see your new test date.

To accommodate this increased testing requirement, GW will increase the number of appointment slots and expand operating hours at its COVID-19 testing centers. Updated information will be provided on the Onward website.

COVID-19 Testing after Travel Outside of the DMV Region

If you are planning to travel outside of the District, Maryland or Virginia, please be aware of testing and quarantine requirements and recommendations

If you are fully vaccinated: 

You are strongly encouraged to schedule a COVID-19 test at a GW testing center on your first day back to campus after travel. Please schedule this test based on your planned return date. You are advised to self-monitor for symptoms of COVID-19 for 14 days after travel.

If you have an exemption to GW’s vaccine requirement and are unvaccinated:

You must report any travel outside of D.C., Maryland or Virginia in your daily symptom screener. Upon returning to the District, per D.C. Health guidance, you must follow the protocol for travel quarantine


For additional information on these updated COVID-19 protocols, visit the Onward website. These updates to the Onward Plan are forthcoming.  Thank you for your cooperation and understanding as we continue to evolve our protocols to help keep our community healthy and safe.