Self-isolation general procedure

Identifying symptoms

Regularly check your symptoms.

If you or a member of your Household is required to self-isolate, you should call the Porters Lodge (01223 335511). They will pass your information to the Head of Welfare (in working hours) or Duty Tutor (outside working hours) who will advise you on accessing support.

Helpful guidance and advice can be found on the University’s COVID information pages.

Telephoning the Porters Lodge

If you are struggling to make phone calls from your room, you may be able to use Wifi calling: please see our Computing pages for more information.

If you have symptoms

  • Following the NHS public guidance

  • While you’re no longer legally required to self-isolate if you have COVID-19, you should try to stay at home and away from others to avoid passing on the virus.
  • You should:
    • try to stay at home and avoid contact with other people for 5 days
    • avoiding meeting people at higher risk from COVID-19 for 10 days, especially if their immune system means they’re at higher risk of serious illness from COVID-19, even if they’ve had a COVID-19 vaccine
      • This starts from the day after you did the test.

If you develop Covid-19 symptoms while in self-isolation

Please call the Porters’ Lodge (01223 335511). The College staff will talk with you and run through a couple of standard questions, so we can make sure you have the support you need. 

When your period of self-isolation ends

Please call the Porters’ Lodge (01223 335511) and notify them that you have finished your self-isolation.

Self-isolation supporters

The College will provide a staff based support network to help facilitate self-isolation situations, but this will be limited. You may want to enhance that by identifying and agreeing with your friends and other household members, how you might support each other as a community should someone be required to self-isolate.

Please speak with your Tutor, member of the JCR or MCR, or a member of the Welfare team if you have any concerns.

Please consider:

  • The individual concerned you are supporting is entering a period of self-isolation (as per current Public Health England guidance).
  • The individual concerned is not allowed any visitors in their bedroom, bathroom or kitchen.
  • Please discuss the exact level of support needed with the individual concerned but this could involve delivering meals (or organising others to do this) from the Cafeteria or undertaking some basic food shopping for them.
  • All supplies should be left outside their bedroom door and so you need to agree the times for these deliveries between yourselves.
  • Supporters are not in a position of medical responsibility. Where there are any concerns you should refer these immediately to the Welfare Team, Porters’ Lodge, or Tutor. Your role is to REASSURE and SUPPORT the individual concerned in self-isolation by keeping in regular contact, via the telephone, email and social media. With this in mind at no time are you to enter the room or kitchen of an individual in self-isolation, instead please do talk to them through the door.

Cafeteria – take away food and drink

On teh Silver Street site, the College is operating a system of take away from the College Cafeteria (charged at normal rate). If you are unable to cook yourself, then please arrange with a friend or someone from your household to collect food from the Cafeteria.

Alternatively, you can contact the food service team on 01223 335595 to place a food order, from the menu, which will be delivered by one of the team. The delivery will be placed at the bottom of your staircase for you to collect. Please ensure you call the team at least 30mins before the Buttery opens.

All disposable food containers and cutlery should go into your general waste (see below).

If you are using your own support network then please inform your self-isolation supporter of your preferences for food and drink and we will do our best to supply these, although the majority of main meals prepared will align with the daily College menu.

All food from the Cafeteria will be charged to your College account via the Upay system, so please ensure your account has enough funds for your order. If you are using a supporter then please inform them that they will need to log your details at the till on collection of the take away food.

Shopping and self-catering

You should not go shopping during your period of self-isolation. Many shops and catering outlets offer online delivery. You can also ask someone to go shopping for you.

Here are the major UK supermarkets which offer online delivery:

If you have any concerns, the MCR and JCR Welfare Teams will be able to arrange some basic assistance

If you need to use a shared kitchen while in self-isolation

  • Wait until the kitchen is empty – do not use it while another person is in there.
  • Wash your hands for 20 seconds before entering the kitchen.
  • Wear a face covering while you are in the kitchen.
  • Wipe down all surfaces after use.
  • Take your food back to your bedroom to eat.

External – take away

There are many delivery apps for meals, covering all budgets and types of food. Two common ones in Cambridge: |

Online food deliveries from external companies will not come directly to your household but rather to the main entrance of College. Please ask a friend or person to collect your delivery and bring it to your room. If you have tried to find someone to bring your delivery and no-one is available, you may fetch your delivery from the driver and return directly to your room.

If you have to collect a food delivery while in self-isolation, you must follow this procedure:

  • Wash your hands thoroughly for 20 seconds before leaving your household
  • Put on a face covering
  • Do not enter any College building on the way – use outside routes
  • Return to your room as soon as you have collected your delivery
  • Do not stop to talk to anyone
  • Take the stairs rather than using a lift, if you are able to do so safely

Personal laundry

It will not be possible to visit the College laundry during your time in self-isolation. All items must remain in your room until your self-isolation has ended.

The College can provide you with a bottle of travel wash to help with cleaning small items in the bathroom sinks.

In an emergency please contact the Housekeeping

Housekeeping and waste

You will be responsible for cleaning your own room bathroom and toilet (supplies will be provided).

General rubbish in your rooms and your allocated gyp room should be double bagged (using the bags provided) and remain in your room until you have arranged an ad-hoc rubbish collection with Housekeeping (

Housekeeping may request regular group collections for large staircases, details will be sent if this is required.

If you require additional cleaning materials, please e-mail Housekeeping with you request (

Fire alarm or emergency

In the event of an emergency, (e.g. fire alarm). You should aim to remain at least 2 metres distant from all other people during an evacuation, avoid direct hand contact with anything outside your room and if you have symptoms wear a clean set of disposable gloves.