All your questions on the health situation of the start of the academic year

Updated 25 November 2021


> All information about testing

Yes, Covid testing at the UNIGE testing centres is free of charge on presentation of the multiservices card or on presentation of proof. This proof can take the form of a certificate of affiliation or registration, a service contract, a written agreement from UNIGE staff, etc.

The entire university community (students and staff).
On presentation of proof, people connected with the University for professional or study reasons (e.g.: students from another university who have courses at the UNIGE) are also entitled to free testing.
External persons collaborating in teaching (simulated patients in particular) can also access the UNIGE's testing centres.

No, as of 1 October 2021, the results of free tests carried out at UNIGE testing centres are no longer  integrated into the Covid Certificate application. The tests result in a negative test certificate allows you to attend classes, go to the Library and the cafeterias, take part in cultural activities organised in UNIGE premises (courses, workshops) as well as attend thesis defences and graduations if you are a member of the university community.

Two types of testing are available at the UNIGE:

  • Saliva PCR testing: at all UNIGE testing sites, results available in about 12-15 hours, UNIGE test certificate valid for 72 hours.
  • Rapid antigenic testing: on the Uni Mail site only, results available in 15 minutes, UNIGE test certificate valid for 48 hours.

CONTROLS of Covid certificates

> Control procedure

Controls are carried out by sampling via random testing. The rooms and areas to be checked are chosen randomly so as to cover as many rooms/areas as possible. The controls are performed systematically, all persons entering the rooms/areas are controlled before they enter.
The check is carried out either via a check application (Covid Check) on a smartphone or visually with a paper certificate.

No. No data is collected. Screen captures, note-taking, making lists or storing data in any form whatsoever are prohibited.
The UNIGE promotes the use of the Light Certificate (activation from the Covid certificate application).

Checks are carried out by uniformed security guards or by "Covid Angels" who will wear a high visibility waistcoat marked "Covid Angel". They can also be carried out by University staff, in accordance with the Covid certificate control procedure.

Yes, in accordance with the Covid certificate control procedure. There is no obligation and the support of STEPS can be requested for support or for specific targeted checks.

Yes, this control is mandatory at the entrance of all public events. It is the responsibility of the organiser. STEPS support can be requested. The rules concerning the organisation of public events at the UNIGE apply.

No. As far as possible, students should arrive in advance. Checks start half an hour before the start of the course. The testing system is designed to accommodate all participants within this time frame. It is adapted continuously, according to feedback.

When rooms and personnel are checked by UNIGE partners and the information is transmitted to STEPS, measures are taken to avoid repetition of the checks and to coordinate the distribution of agents. This applies in particular to students on placement at the HUG who have already been checked and who have teaching duties at the CMU.


> All information about vaccination

From 20 September 2021, anyone who has been vaccinated abroad with a vaccine authorised by the European Medicines Agency (EMA, list available on the vaccination page) can obtain a Swiss COVID certificate by applying to the cantonal authorities for the issue of the equivalence. > Link to the form

If your vaccine is not authorised by the EMA, you must follow the indications of the health authorities to complete your vaccination schedule (link to be found...). In the meantime, you must be tested periodically to obtain the Covid certificate.

Yes, by doing a PCR test at the UNIGE, valid for 72 hours (the results are only given after 12 to 15 hours, or even the next day) or an antigenic test valid for 48 hours and by presenting the (negative) result of the test at the entrance to the zone (QR code).


The injection of one dose only allows the student to obtain the Covid certificate if the vaccine is authorised (e.g. Johnson and Johnson vaccine). For the others (requiring 2 doses), the Covid certificate is not issued. In this case, it will be necessary to carry out tests periodically until the Covid certificate is obtained (after the last dose). A negative test allows access to the courses.
The exception to this is people who have recovered, who only need one dose.

Covid Certificate

> All information on Covid Certificate

Any person taking part in a teaching activity, whether a member of staff or mandated by the UNIGE, must  have a Covid certificate or a UNIGE negative test certificate to enter the classroom, as it is the case for students. Teaching staff means any person who is in a room or auditorium while teaching is taking place. Technical teams (UNIGE or not) in emergency situations are not subject to the certificate requirement.

Persons whose activities are not directly linked to teaching, working for example at the reception desks, in admissions or in the library, are not subject to the Covid certificate or the UNIGE test certificate requirement but must fully respect the institution's protection plan and masks rules.

Yes, if the employee attends the event as a spectator.
As an organiser, the staff is not subject to the certificate requirement but must respect the rules concerning the wearing of masks.

Yes, if the staff member visits the library as a user.
Library staff are not required to have a certificate, but they must comply with the rules on wearing masks when performing their duties.

Yes, these persons are subject to the same rules as the teaching staff.

You cannot enter the classroom and are invited to take the distance learning course.

You may be subject to disciplinary sanctions up to and including expulsion from the UNIGE and criminal prosecution.


> All information on wearing masks at UNIGE

Yes, waering a face mask is mandatory at all times inside University buildings, even where Covid certification is requested (mainly teaching and public events).