The health and safety of Queens’ students, faculty and staff is of paramount importance as we return to campus amid the ongoing threat of COVID-19.
In addition to the modified policies and established care and services of the Health and Wellness Center, Queens' partnership with Novant Health and its network of more than 1,500 physicians, 580 locations and 15 medical centers provides our community with an abundance of resources to maintain a safe environment.
process for students to receive care
All visits to the Health and Wellness Center (HWC) will be by appointment only.
When a student calls HWC, depending on the level of urgency and staff availablity, they will either be immediately transferred to a nurse, or an appointment will be scheduled. The student will be assessed via phone for COVID-19 symptoms. The nurse will refer the student for testing, prescribe quarantine protocols and recommend the relevant intervention if a test is not warranted. Non-COVID-19 health conditions will be scheduled for a virtual, telehealth visit with a nurse or physician. All students, regardless of assessment, will receive a follow-up phone call in 24-48 hours.
Counseling visits will all be virtual and scheduled through firstname.lastname@example.org.
Expectations On Campus and prior to arrival
Each of us must recognize and accept our role within a larger community, whereby we share accountability for keeping ourselves and one another healthy and safe.
We are in this together. To demonstrate our commitment to keep ourselves and each other healthy, all students and employees will sign a community covenant. This is a promise to adhere to expectations prior to arrival, while on campus, and ongoing COVID-19 mitigation strategies.
Our community covenant asks for everyone's commitment to properly utilize universal face masks, daily symptoms checks, health trainings, post-arrival testing; and to participate in ongoing COVID-19 mitigation measures like survey testing and contact tracing. We are better and stronger if we all actively participate in all the safety measures outlined in this plan.
Click here to sign the community covenant.
Universal Use of Face Masks and Physical Distancing
All students, faculty, staff, vendors, and guests on campus will be required to properly wear face masks outside of private residence hall rooms or offices, and to follow physical distancing – stay at least six feet apart and avoid large gatherings. Masks should be worn in your residence hall room or office when someone else comes into your residence hall room or office.
Queens will follow guidance from the CDC related to proper masking.
Individuals should wear masks with two or more layers to stop the spread of COVID-19.
- Wear the mask over your nose and mouth and secure it under your chin.
- Masks should be worn by people two years and older.
- Masks should NOT be worn by children younger than two, people who have trouble breathing, or people who cannot remove the mask without assistance.
- Do NOT wear masks intended for healthcare workers, for example, N95 respirators.
- Based on CDC guidelines, we do not accept the use of gaiters or face shields as proper masking. Evaluation of these face covers is on-going, but effectiveness is unknown at this time.
Queens asks that all students returning for in-person learning (both on-campus and commuter students) begin return-to-campus preparations two weeks ahead of their planned arrival to Queens. During that 14-day period, students should shelter-in-place: stay in a single location, check and report symptoms daily using the daily symptom checker, and separate from others. We understand students will interact with household members who are going to work, school and other errands, but they should maintain physical distance and wear a face covering whenever possible.
Testing and Other Protocols
Queens has developed a testing program with two main components: 1) comprehensive community testing at the start of the spring semester, and 2) ongoing survey testing to monitor for asymptomatic cases and for early identification of potential clusters.
Testing Upon Returning to Campus:
To limit the risk of COVID-19 on campus at the start of the semester, all students and employees must have a COVID-19 test upon returning to campus. Details on when are where to test are forthcoming.
During the period between testing and obtaining results, students are required to shelter-in-place in their assigned residence hall room or off-campus residence, and remain in there until the Vice President of Student Engagement or designee releases them to resume normal activities.
- Residential students should not leave their rooms for any reason other than to:
- use shared bathrooms.
- collect meals from central drop-off locations if instructed by university officials.
- participate in essential activities as directed by the university, such as testing.
- Students should be prepared to participate in classes remotely during the period they are subject to shelter-in-place orders.
- Students should not participate in any university programming including athletic activities until a Queens official clears them to return to normal activities.
- Students should not have guests in their room; they should maintain masking even around roommates to prevent potential in-residence spread and refrain from close contact (within 6 feet for more than 15 minutes) with other individuals.
- Students should follow hand and hygiene best practices, as described here: cdc.gov/handwashing.
Faculty and Staff Testing:
During the period between testing and obtaining results, faculty and staff are required to:
- Shelter-in-place at their personal residence and not return to campus or otherwise travel. Do not come to campus to work. Continue to work from home until you are cleared to return by your supervisor or vice president.
- Maintain physical distancing (i.e., stay 6 feet from others and avoid gathering in groups) and abide by other mitigation principles (i.e., use face masks when outside your private residence, follow hand and hygiene best practices cdc.gov/handwashing.)
Employees should plan to work from home or to take leave until the above outlined criteria are met. At any time, if an employee tests positive, they should not report to campus and should notify their supervisor as soon as possible. Employees who are working 100% remotely during the spring semester are exempt from this program.
Positive Test Results – All:
Students, faculty or staff who test positive during this process should seek the guidance of their primary care physician and immediately self-isolate (see Quarantine & Isolation) until at least until all three of the following criteria are met:
- 24 hours with no fever (without the use of fever-reducing medicine); AND
- Other COVID and respiratory symptoms have improved; AND
- 10 days since symptoms first appeared.
All community members will be asked to agree to their participation in this testing program as a part of the community covenant.
Survey Testing Throughout the Semester:
Queens has developed a survey testing program that will be used during the full spring 2021 semester to monitor asymptomatic COVID-19 cases and to identify potential clusters of cases early.
Each week, up to 10% of our students, faculty, and staff will be randomly selected to participate in this testing program. In addition, enhanced testing will be performed on student athletes, coaches and trainers in accordance with conference approved guidelines.
If an asymptomatic student or employee tests positive as a participant in the survey testing program, they should seek the guidance of their primary care physician and will be required to follow the quarantine and self-isolation procedures established by the university. Additional tests may be done based on an assessment of the individual’s close contacts. (see Quarantine & Isolation)
Testing for Symptomatic Individuals or Those Who May Have Been Exposed:
Individuals who meet any of the following criteria should be tested using a PCR test:
- Show signs or symptoms consistent with COVID-19.
- Have a recent known or suspected exposure to a person with laboratory-confirmed COVID-19.
- Have been asked or referred to get testing by their healthcare provider or health department.
- Are part of a cohort for whom testing is recommended (in the context of an outbreak).
These tests are available through your primary care physician or medical clinics in the area. Covid Testing Sites
Individuals who have symptoms or who have been exposed should be quarantined until released by a health care professional.
All students, faculty, and staff will be expected to self-monitor daily for COVID-19 symptoms. Through our partnership with Novant Health, Queens will utilize an online symptom checker. Students, faculty, and staff will log into a Queens-specific URL daily and be guided through a brief questionnaire. Community members who receive a warning based on the assessment should not come to campus or leave their residence hall room if already on campus. Residential students should contact residence life staff and employees should contact their supervisor.
Click here to access and bookmark the link to Daily Symptom checker
Traffic Flow and Density
Where appropriate, buildings will have specific entry and exit points, appropriate distancing will be clearly marked, and there will be a lower allowed occupancy in most buildings.
The dining facility will have reduced seating capacity. Utensils and plates will be disposable and to-go options will be prevalent. Lines for dining options will be marked with floor stickers placed 6 feet apart.
Sanitizing the campus will occur regularly, and hand sanitizer stations will be placed throughout campus.
Practice Preventive Hygiene
- Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after being in a public place, or blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing. Use hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol if soap and water are not available.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.
- If you are not wearing your face mask, remember to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, or use the inside of your elbow.
- Throw used tissues in the trash and wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer if soap and water are unavailable.
- Know the signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and what to do if symptomatic: stay home or leave class/work immediately if you are sick and notify your residential advisor/supervisor; call your health care provider in advance of a visit.