Official Updates

Testing and Quarantine Procedures for Fall 2020

August 20, 2020

Dear members of the NYUAD community,

Testing, tracing, isolating, and monitoring will play a significant role in how we manage NYUAD community health this coming year. To maintain a safe campus, NYUAD will be putting in place robust testing and quarantining policies that comply with UAE regulations, including mandatory testing upon return to campus, followed by interval testing throughout the fall.

The information provided below applies to campus residents (students, faculty, staff, and family/household members) as well as faculty and staff approved to return to campus for essential student, academic, and operational support. The majority of NYUAD employees will continue to work remotely into the fall. 

The information below is important for all community members, please make sure you read to the end.

Key Points

  • All students, faculty, and staff will be required to show an initial negative COVID-19 test AND receive a green notification from the NYUAD Symptom Checker app before they will be allowed to enter their workspace or other academic or administrative areas on campus. Details on when, where, and how to get tested are included below.
  • All individuals returning to live on campus will quarantine for up to 14 days upon their return, even with proof of a negative COVID-19 test. The length of quarantine may vary depending upon UAE Ministry of Education (MOE) and the National Emergency Crisis and Disaster Management Authority (NCEMA) guidelines which may change without notice. During this time, students, faculty, and staff residing on campus must stay in their residence or suite, and not go to public areas. Find out additional information on the UAE’s quarantine guidelines. We appreciate everyone’s cooperation with this requirement, as it is of the greatest importance to maintaining a safe and healthy community. Failure to comply with the guidelines can lead to a personal fine of up to AED 50,000, and it will put the University’s ability to maintain a limited level of on-campus activity at risk.
  • All students, faculty, and staff returning to campus will also need to complete the NYUAD mandatory online COVID-19 training (one time only) as well as the daily symptom checker. All community members must adhere to health and safety protocols while on campus including wearing face masks, maintaining physical distance of at least 2 meters, washing hands regularly, and avoiding gatherings outside of their family or residential unit.

Testing Procedures

In order to keep our community healthy and compliant with federal regulations, testing is mandatory for all individuals coming back onto campus. This is required by both the UAE MOE as well as NCEMA.

  • All members of the NYUAD community - students, faculty, staff, family members, and domestic staff must download the Al Hosn app and be tested at least once before entering academic, administrative, or residential facilities on campus.This includes those individuals who have already been residing on and working on campus since July 1, 2020.
  • Effective August 23, the NYUAD Symptom Check and a temperature check by Public Safety officers at entrances will be required to enter campus for everyone, including residents.
    • If you are a campus resident, please complete the NYUAD Symptom Check before leaving your residence so that your approval is ready if asked by a Public Safety officer. Please note that due to shift changes of the PSD officers you might be asked multiple times to show the NYUAD Symptom Check and undergo a temperature check, and we appreciate your understanding and patience.

Students, Faculty, and Staff in the UAE Seeking to Return to Campus (or those who are currently residing on campus)

You must show proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test via the Al Hosn app upon returning to campus. The test must have been done after August 16. This requirement will be retroactive and apply to all community members who have been abroad and returned to the UAE since July 1, 2020, and those individuals who have already been residing on and working on campus since July 1, as well as local students who will be coming to live on campus through the fall.

Students, Faculty, and Staff Outside of the UAE

Prior to departure you must complete a COVID-19 PCR test, and show proof of the negative test result before boarding your flight to the UAE. The test must be completed within 96 hours of your flight departure time. We recommend you contact your airline if you have questions about traveling into the UAE. In addition to out-of-country testing, individuals will be required to have an official in-country test after arrival. On arrival, individuals will also need to download the Al Hosn app and quarantine for up to 14 days.

When, Where, and How to Get Tested

If you (and your household, for residents) have been tested after August 16 either upon entry to Abu Dhabi or upon arrival into the country, please retain proof of the negative result as this will serve as your initial “gateway” test requirement.

For those who still require a test, please utilize the mobile testing center that will be made available on campus from August 24 to September 3 (excluding the weekend), details below OR the SEHA Drive-Through Screening Center - Corniche, which is free for NYUAD students, faculty, and staff (you must bring your NYU ID with you, provide reference code “U-NYU” and show the MOE letter (EnglishArabic).

Alternatively, if you cannot use either of the two provided testing options and need to make your own arrangements, call the Department of Health at 800 1717 and submit a reimbursement request to cover the cost of the gateway test requirement. Please contact for reimbursement instructions.
Students who will require testing post arrival will have their testing facilitated by the NYUAD Health Center.

Mobile Testing on Campus

Beginning August 24, NYUAD will provide an on-campus mobile testing center for two weeks.

  • If you are a campus resident (including children 14+ and live-in or live-out household staff), off-campus faculty/researchers/staff who are authorized to return to campus, you are invited and encouraged to utilize the testing service. Testing is not required for students, faculty, and staff who will not be coming to campus at all.
  • The center will be available 8:30am - 12:30pm and 1:30pm - 4:30pm from August 24 to September 3, Sunday to Thursday.
  • There will be availability for 10 testing slots per hour. An online booking form is available to secure an appointment and we ask that you please make sure you arrive on time for your appointment. A user guide is available to help with the booking form.

Campus resident children ages 12 and 13 can be tested by the NYUAD Health Center. In line with existing regulations, testing is not currently required for children under 12.

Confirmation of Testing

  • The NYUAD Health Center will contact students individually to obtain confirmation of their negative COVID-19 test results.
  • Faculty, staff, and residents can confirm their COVID-19 test results here.

If you have a positive test result for COVID-19 do not go to class, your office, or workplace. Students and on-campus residents should contact the Health Center at or +971 2 628 8100, and faculty and staff should contact their physician or DOH directly at 800 1717 for medical care.

If you are experiencing a life-threatening emergency condition call 999 (emergency services) or 998 (ambulance).

Employees must contact their supervisor to advise of their absence for sick leave. All community members must also report a positive result to the NYUAD COVID-19 Response Team at

Ongoing Interval Testing

Following the mandatory initial round of testing, community members will also need to take part in regular interval testing throughout the fall from August 30. Additional information on interval testing will be shared with the community soon.


Anyone travelling to the UAE from abroad must quarantine at home (in your campus residence) for up to 14 days. This includes all students, including local students coming to reside on campus from their homes in the UAE. The only exceptions are students and residents who have been residing on campus throughout the summer.

Violating home quarantine procedures is punishable by a fine of AED 50,000 as you are putting the health of others at risk. Members of the community in quarantine must download the Al Hosn app and must monitor their health, follow the directions from the health authorities, and contact their doctor (or the NYUAD Health Center in the case of students) if they show symptoms. Individuals in quarantine must stay at home and not go to work, study, or public spaces. Exercise in your residence or apartment, rather than outdoors or in any common spaces. Additional information on the UAE’s quarantine guidelines.

Compliance with Health and Safety Protocols

The health of one of us is the health of all of us. As we did in the spring, the University will be enforcing strict health and safety protocols throughout the fall. We expect all members of the community to model adherence to our health and safety guidelines.

When you encounter someone on campus who is not complying with the health and safety protocols we encourage you to gently urge them to act properly - to wear a mask, maintain physical distance, etc. Our Public Safety staff are authorized to challenge conduct that does not comply with health and safety guidance, but we hope they will not have to; it is an unpleasant task, and it unfairly puts them at a health risk.

  • Face masks: Community members will be required to wear face masks that cover their mouth and nose at all times when they are outside of their residence on campus - on the highline, in an academic building, in C2, etc.
  • Physical distancing: It is important to maintain a distance of 2 meters (6 ft) from others. It is also important to maintain limitations on numbers of people per elevator, and follow directional signage into and exiting from buildings and rooms. NYUAD is reconfiguring entrances and exits and placing signage across campus to help support physical distancing and direction of pedestrian traffic.
  • Wash your hands: Washing your hands with soap and water – or using an appropriate alcohol-based hand sanitizer – is a simple, safe, and effective tool against the spread of the COVID-19 virus. Additional hand sanitizer dispensers have been placed around the campus, and they are regularly filled.
  • Do not go to work, study, or interact with others on campus if you are feeling sick. If you display any of the symptoms associated with COVID-19 (fever, cough, difficulty breathing/shortness of breath, loss of sense of smell or taste), or have been in close contact with someone who has a confirmed case of COVID-19 you may not come to work or interact with others on campus. If you have any of these symptoms you should seek care from your medical provider. In addition, you must inform the NYUAD COVID-19 Response Team at for instructions on isolation and monitoring.


Testing, tracing, isolating, and monitoring are key to keeping our community safe. We aim to make testing as quick and convenient for you as possible, and we appreciate your understanding and cooperation.

Please make sure you are reading the weekly Return to Campus memos which include important information on planning for fall and our return to campus, and check the faculty and staff intranet and student portal often for useful information and guidance.

Enjoy the rest of your summer. Stay safe.

Fabio Piano, Provost
Raghib Ali, Director and Principal Investigator, NYUAD Public Health Research Center
Ayaz Virji, Medical Director, NYUAD Health Center