In accordance with University testing policies, testing is available only to HMS students, postdocs and employees who are authorized by their HMS department or unit to be in campus buildings for four hours or more per week, and to students living in Vanderbilt Hall. At present, those who are employed by or have a primary academic appointment at a hospital or affiliated institution are ineligible for Harvard testing. 

If you have issues or questions regarding eligibility, please contact Soha Ashrafi (

Testing frequency depends:

  • If you are a grad student living in Vandy, you need to get tested three times a week. 
  • If you are a non-Vandy grad student, you need to get tested two times a week. 
  • If you are a research tech or a postdoc, you need to get tested one time per week.  

Where and when to pick up test kits:

Test kits can be picked up at the HMS New Research Building (NRB) on Mondays, Wednesdays and Fridays from 8 a.m. until noon and from 2 to 4 p.m., and on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 6 to 10 a.m. Please use the 77 Avenue Louis Pasteur entrance and be ready to show the attendant your Harvard ID and the Color app displaying your eligibility.

The following guidelines apply only to members of the HMS community who are authorized to be on campus to live, learn or work for four or more hours per week and, therefore, are eligible for Harvard testing.

  • Create your Color account. If you have not already done so, create a Color account using your Harvard email before arriving at a test location. This will expedite the process, since a Color account is now required for testing. If you need assistance with setting up your Color account, email If you believe you are authorized to be on campus but are denied access to create a Color account, please notify your department or unit administrator, as this will need to be resolved before you can schedule an appointment, be tested on site or access a test kit once unobserved testing begins.
  • Understand your testing frequency. Currently only initial viral testing—within 2 to 3 days prior to or after the date of return to campus, but no later than two weeks after arrival—is required for those approved to be on campus, with the exception of students living in Vanderbilt Hall, who are required to have recurring weekly tests. Harvard will be transitioning to unobserved, self-administered, recurring testing via Color beginning the week of Sept. 14. Those members of our community who are eligible for Harvard testing will receive an email soon with more details about this transition and process.
  • Save time on testing day. Right before going to the test site, sign in to your Color account and click to “Activate a Kit.” Answer all of the questions until you see an image of a test tube vial prompting you to enter a series of numbers. These numbers will be provided to you at the testing site.
  • Use Crimson Clear every day you are on campus. Before arriving on campus every day, complete a symptom attestation through the Crimson Clear web page. If you are cleared, you will receive a “clear” pass, which is valid for 23 hours. If you are not cleared, an HUHS clinician will call you during regular business hours to determine next steps before you can enter a Harvard facility (those living in Vanderbilt Hall will not be barred from their residence).
  • Access only designated spaces. The HMS campus is considered closed to all except those who are authorized and have received an exception to be on campus. These authorized individuals should remain in the spaces designated for their work and/or learning.
  • Keep Harvard healthy. Check out these resources for reducing the risk and spread of COVID-19, as well as managing fear, anxiety and stress. Additionally, please adhere to room capacity signs posted inside campus buildings. Informal outdoor gatherings are limited to no more than 10 people, who must adhere to physical distancing guidelines of at least six feet apart. Face coverings are also required on campus, inside and outside.