Ohio University

OHIO President Nellis issues health directives that align with interim policy for community health requirements

Published: August 27, 2020 Author: Staff reports

Ohio University President M. Duane Nellis has issued new Presidential Health Directives in support of Interim Policy 44.102, which enables the University to take appropriate action to address transmittable disease, epidemics, pandemics, and other threats to the health and safety of persons associated with Ohio University.

In addition to the interim policy, the Presidential Health Directives allow President Nellis or his designee in consultation with Chief Medical Affairs Officer, Ken Johnson, to establish specific health requirements for University community members appropriate to current community health risks.

“The new health directives establish specific health requirements for University community members as necessary to mitigate current community health risks,” President Nellis said. “They allow the University to appropriately respond to matters including transmittable disease, epidemics, pandemics, and other threats to the health and safety of our students, faculty, staff, and local communities.”

The following Community Health Directives are effective immediately for all students, faculty, and staff until further notice.

Facial Coverings

All Ohio University students, faculty, and staff are required to comply with the provisions outlined in Interim Policy 44.102 related to facial coverings.

Presence on Campus

A daily symptom check is required of all students, faculty, and staff while living on campus or prior to arriving. If an individual receives a red status on the symptom check, that person must remain off campus or self-isolate in their residence on campus and seek immediate medical attention.

Anyone living off campus who has received a red status on the symptom check, has been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19, has developed symptoms that are consistent with COVID-19, or has tested positive for COVID-19 may not return to campus until they receive a return to work or return to class release from a medical professional, local health department, or community health resource sanctioned by the University.

Those living on campus who have received a red status on the symptom check must continue to self-isolate until receiving a release from a medical professional, local health department, or community health resource sanctioned by the University; comply with the terms and conditions of the Housing Contract and Quarantine or Isolation Agreement; and follow the instructions of University officials.

If any student, faculty, or staff was on campus when experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, began to experience symptoms within 48 hours of being on campus, subsequently learned they were exposed to COVID-19, or tested positive for COVID-19, the individual must report this information through the University’s COVID-19 Incident Report. While information may be submitted anonymously, the University encourages including identifiable information for follow up services and support. This information will allow for a non-clinical case manager to arrange any necessary cleaning for housing, office, and other facilities for on-campus students, faculty, and staff; to identify hot spots for COVID-19 infection; and to connect identified persons with services needed to successfully stay at home.

Participation in Contact Tracing Efforts

Contact tracing is an essential function to help stop the spread of communicable diseases. All students, faculty, and staff are required to fully participate with contact tracing efforts by Ohio University and the local health department.

Participation in Public Health Requirements for Quarantining or Isolating

All Ohio University students, faculty, and staff are required to fully comply with all health directives and guidelines issued by the local health department, Ohio University, their medical provider, and University-sanctioned health resources, as applicable, related to quarantining and/or self-isolating.

Gatherings and Social Distancing

It is essential that if gathering with individuals outside of your household, members of our University community wear facial coverings in compliance with Interim Policy 44.102 and practice social distancing of 6 feet or more.

Further Guidance and Resources

  • Students found in violation of Interim Policy 44.102 will be held accountable via the Student Code of Conduct and could face consequences up to and including suspension.
  • Student organizations will be held to the same standards as individual students, faculty, and staff. If there is a preponderance of the evidence that suggests that an organization, formally or informally, facilitated violations of the health directives issued by the State of Ohio, the local health department, or Ohio University, the organization will face discipline up to and including suspension or expulsion.
  • Failure to comply with Interim Policy 44.102 by faculty or staff will be addressed through the appropriate University disciplinary processes based on an employee's classification. Disciplinary action may vary, up to and including termination of employment.
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