COVID-19 and Your Health
What is social distancing?
What are the best practices for personal health?
- Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom, before eating and after coughing, sneezing or blowing your nose. Make sure you wash your thumbs, wrists and in-between your fingers. This is the best defense against the spread of all viruses.
- If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
- Stay home when you are ill. Rest will assure quicker recovery and decrease the spread of infectious illness on campus.
- Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
- Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
- Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
- Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
- Get plenty of rest/sleep.
- Get the flu vaccine.
Find additional health resources on our Health and Wellness page.
What are the symptoms of coronavirus?
Reported illnesses have ranged from mild symptoms to severe illness for confirmed coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) cases. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure and may include fever, cough and shortness of breath. Learn more about the symptoms on our Health and Wellness page.
Should healthy people wear masks?
For the health and safety of our community, we are asking everyone to wear a face covering when on campus, whether outside in public areas or inside a building. We also encourage everyone to follow CDC guidance in their personal lives and wear a face covering when you go out in public.
How has University Health Services prepared for COVID-19?
University Health Services (UHS) is an accredited health care facility. UHS staff are trained in current infectious disease control procedures, and protocols are in place if someone were to present with symptoms requiring testing, isolation and/or care. UHS has been planning for weeks to ensure they have ample medical supplies and staffing to be prepared to care for our student community.
Which health services are available while classes are online?
University Health Services (UHS) remains available with adjusted services to best meet the needs of our community at this time.
Telehealth is the primary mode of service provision.
In order to protect student and staff health and safety, all appointments and services must be initiated by calling UHS at 412-268-2157 during regular business hours (8:30 a.m. – 5:00 p.m.).
For more information about how UHS will utilize telehealth care to provide continuity of care with medication refills, psychiatric care, transcare, and other primary care needs, please visit the UHS website.
If you are having a medical emergency, please call 911 if you are off campus and if on campus, call 412-268-2323 to access Emergency Medical Services. After-hours non-emergency medical advice can continue to be accessed by TeamHealth at 1-844-881-7176.
How does this impact my student health insurance?
For students who elected insurance through the Student Health Insurance Program, your coverage will be maintained through the coverage period that ends July 31, 2020. The Student Health Insurance Program, delivered by Aetna, will continue to provide coverage wherever you are consistent with the plan details. If you cancel your student medical insurance before April 1, and if the insurance company has not paid claims on your or your dependent’s behalf, then you may be eligible for a prorated refund from Aetna. Aetna has assured the university that testing and care related to COVID-19 are eligible health services, provided such tests and care are available and ordered by a healthcare professional.
What do I do if I think I have been exposed to someone with COVID-19?
Guidelines for what to do if you think you've been exposed to COVID-19 can be found on our Health and Wellness page.
What if I get sick?
Our first priority is your safety and well-being.
Find guidance for what to do if you get sick on our Health and Wellness page.
What should I do if I’m diagnosed with COVID-19?
Our first priority is your safety and well-being. Please reach out to University Health Services at 412-268-2157 or your primary care provider for guidance in treating symptoms and keeping others around you safe.
For connection to additional supports, we encourage you to email email@example.com. If you have received a positive test result and have been on campus within the last 14-days, or have been in close contact with someone that has been on campus within the last 14 days, you must report your result to Community Health and Well-Being at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can connect you with supports and take proper precautions to keep you and our community safe.
Students experiencing COVID-19 symptoms who may require some short-term academic accommodations related to their illness should contact Disability Resources at email@example.com. If you have received a positive COVID-19 test result and have documentation of that result, please attach it to the email when you contact Disability Resources.
For Faculty and Staff:
Our first priority is your safety and well-being. Please reach out to your primary care provider for guidance in treating symptoms and keeping others around you safe. Human Resources has also provided guidance about supports and available options in their Work Leave Options [PDF].
Additionally, you must report your diagnosis to Matthew McCabe within the Office of Human Resources at firstname.lastname@example.org, or to Community Health and Well-Being at email@example.com so that we can connect you with supports and take proper precautions to keep you and our community safe. Information regarding your diagnosis will only be shared as necessary for the university to safe guard the community and to comply with any applicable laws or government orders.
Is the university taking additional cleaning or sanitation measures?
- Cleaning for health has always been our underlying approach to campus custodial services. Our cleaning staff is trained on how to properly disinfect touched surfaces and how to keep surfaces clean. They wear gloves while they clean and are required to wash their hands before and after breaks. Disinfecting wipes are being introduced at dining locations and public study spaces to allow people to clean tabletops before use.
- Electrostatic disinfectant systems have been dispatched for use in University Health Services, classrooms and high-traffic public spaces. The technology’s touchless disinfection and sanitizing capabilities can treat an entire room in under three minutes. This EPA-certified, human safe and environmentally friendly solution earned recent recognition from The Infection Prevention Strategy (TIPS) as a 2019 Top Innovation of the Year.
- Additional cleaning supplies have been ordered as a preparatory measure, and cleaning staff are receiving special coronavirus training every day.
What preventive measures are in place to protect the health of the campus community?
Hand sanitizing stations are mounted at building exits and in other high-traffic areas as a reminder that hand hygiene is the most important tactic to prevent infection. Facilities Management and Campus Services (FMCS) has ordered additional, portable hand sanitizing stations in visible locations. The custodial staff are cleaning public spaces in every campus building daily. University Health Services is cleaned twice per day. Weekend cleaning frequencies are being increased in public gathering areas of academic buildings. Disinfecting wipes are being introduced at dining locations and public study spaces to allow customers to clean tabletops before use. Hospital-grade electrostatic disinfectant systems have been dispatched for use in University Health Services, classrooms and high-traffic public spaces.
How frequently are public spaces cleaned by custodial staff?
Custodial Services staff start each day with refresher training on hygiene standards and sanitation of high-touch surfaces. The custodial staff are cleaning public spaces in accordance with CDC guidelines — typically the public gathering places in campus buildings are cleaned daily. Even more frequent cleaning is performed at University Health Services and dining locations. Weekend cleaning frequencies are being increased in public gathering areas of academic buildings.
What should I do if I see a space on campus that needs cleaning?
If you see a space on campus that you feel needs cleaning, please contact Facilities Management and Campus Services at firstname.lastname@example.org.
How can I help students who may be impacted?
We are encouraging impacted students to turn to those they trust and find most helpful when they need support or assistance. This includes family, friends, faith leaders and CMU's strong network of university resources, including housefellows, college liaisons, academic advisors, departmental coordinators and Counseling and Psychological Services (CaPS). CaPS counselors are available at any time, day or night, at 412-268-2922.
Is CaPS still available to students?
CaPS will continue to provide students after-hours point of need support, as well as consultation services for faculty and staff who are concerned about a student. If you are away from campus the staff will work with you to provide guidance and support around your mental health needs. Finally, CapS will also provide virtual skills workshops on various relevant topics to support students’ mental health during this time.
For more information about how University Health Services will utilize telehealth care to provide continuity of care with medication refills, psychiatric care, transcare, and other primary care needs, please the UHS website.
As a faculty or staff member, what assistance is available to me to help me cope with the emotional impact of a COVID-19 outbreak?
CMU provides resources to help academic and staff employees and eligible dependents cope with these types of life events through the Guidance Resources Employee Assistance Program (EAP). You may also call the EAP line directly at 1-844-744-1370. The EAP provides confidential, short-term counseling at no cost to the employee.