Coronavirus Updates

(As of December 23, 2021)

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the paramount importance of public health is evident. Our community has risen to the challenges presented by the COVID-19 pandemic with compassion, resilience, and expertise to protect the health of our community; to help slow the spread of the virus in our region and improve population health; and to ensure the continuity of our teaching, research, and service mission.

For the latest news on health advisories, Campus Services, and other activities, visit the COVID-19 Resource Guide for the Columbia Community, and the CUIMC resource page, which are updated regularly with resources and information. The School will also send email alerts as new information, guidance, or protocols are announced. For other School-specific questions, please email us at; if you have a confidential matter, please email the Office of Faculty Affairs and Human Resources at

  • All Columbia Mailman classes will be remote for January 2022 to allow for staggering of gateway testing for Columbia students overall. If you are an instructor with questions about teaching your course online for that period of time, please contact Helen De Pinho (hd2122) in the Office of Education. All instruction should revert to in-person mode after January. 

  • Columbia Mailman faculty, researchers, staff, and students involved in research, administration and all other non-instructional work, should work remotely for the first two weeks of January 2022, if feasible, dependent on guidance from their unit or supervisor. Individual units/supervisors may determine who will be required to be in person versus remote. Beyond these two weeks, employees should return to in-person/hybrid schedules they followed in the fall semester.

  • All University facilities, including on the CUIMC campus, will remain open. Faculty, staff, and students may still access campus buildings at all times including during January 2022, but they must follow the requirements for testing (see below) and other requirements for green pass to access facilities and must continue to adhere to other campus COVID-19 safety measures.

  • Columbia Mailman students are strongly recommended to get a PCR test prior to return to campus and are required to get a Columbia gateway test within 72 hours of return to campus and access of Columbia buildings for any reason.  

  • Gateway testing is required for all non-student affiliates who did not receive a Columbia gateway test during 2021. We strongly recommend for all to get a PCR test, given possible holiday travel and socializing, preferably prior to your return to campus, or when you return through the Columbia testing facilities at Lerner Hall or the Black Building. 

  •  See the latest information for Academic Year 2021-2022.

Health and Safety Protocols

  • Currently, when indoors, face coverings are required for everyone. For unvaccinated individuals, both face masks and distancing are required, indoors and outdoors. For vaccinated individuals, face coverings and distancing are not required outdoors. 

  • For those who are on campus, we are taking every precaution to ensure your health and safety, including enhanced cleaning of our spaces. Visit the Facilities Management Website for a full list of enhancements.

  • For information on testing, tracing, and quarantine, please see COVID-19 Public Health Protocols

  • For updates on the distribution of the COVID-19 vaccine, please see COVID-19 Vaccine Information for CUIMC Employees and Students.

Return to Campus Planning and Requirements

Building Access

  • Those employees and students who need to access School buildings but who are not authorized to work on-site will need to need to make arrangements: students please contact the Office of Student Affairs at or 212-342-3128; faculty and staff please contact Eric Ruberte, director of operations, at

The University has suspended all Columbia-related travel, both international and domestic, for all affiliates until further notice. Consistent with CDC guidance, Columbia advises all affiliates who have returned from ANY international travel, stay home for 14 days after returning from travel, monitor their health, and practice social distancing. Follow the self-isolation guidance found on the Columbia COVID site. Additionally, all Columbia affiliates are strongly urged to postpone any non-essential personal travel abroad. Clinical staff should review CUIMC's Coronavirus Information for Providers and Clinical Staff.


  • To improve commuting options for essential onsite employees, the University will launch a shuttle service focused on Manhattan, Brooklyn, Queens, and the Bronx this month. The fare will be $4.50 each way, and the shuttles will make stops throughout the day. For the current intracampus and Hoboken shuttle schedule, please see Columbia’s transportation website for details.

The well-being of our community is our priority and we are actively monitoring the situation. We are following the guidance of the NYC Department of HealthUS Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the World Health Organization, and Columbia University. As this is a continually evolving situation, we are also developing and implementing contingency plans and policies with the University and Medical Center, including contingency plans for remote learning and working, should the need arise. To stay abreast of travel advisories in the tri-state region, please visit New YorkNew Jersey, and Connecticut travel advisory pages.

As a School of Public Health, we also have the unique opportunity to tap into the expertise of our faculty, which includes some the of world’s top infectious disease experts, as we plan.