Public Health Measures
Ongoing Public Health and Safety Measures for all UVA Community members
Public Health Measures
The University has imposed health and safety requirements on every student, faculty, and staff member who will be on Grounds this fall in a comprehensive effort to mitigate the risk of virus exposure and transmission. All members of the University community must comply with policies and procedures designed to keep members of the UVA and broader community safe. All those returning to Grounds, including all students and employees, were required to complete a training module that provides key information about what is necessary to mitigate the risk of spreading COVID-19. At the conclusion of this training, all students and employees were required to acknowledge the risks presented by the virus and agree to abide by these important safety protocols. A summary of these public health measures is provided here:
- New Temporary Limits on Gathering Size. Starting January 19, 2021 and continuing through the first two weeks of the semester, the University will limit the size of gatherings to no more than six people.
- Daily Health Check. All students, faculty, and staff planning to be on Grounds or working in a UVA Health facility are required to complete a daily check on symptoms related to COVID-19 through the HOOS Health Check app (available in Apple and Google Play stores)or website. HOOS Health Check is designed to make individuals aware of their symptoms, to encourage personal responsibility, and, if the individual exhibits symptoms, to provide resources and next steps. For more information, please see FAQs on HOOS Health Check.
- Guidance for community members who have contracted. All UVA community members who are in the Charlottesville region this semester will be required to follow University health and safety policies around masks, physical distancing, testing, gatherings, and other key behaviors, including those who have previously tested positive for COVID-19 or who have been vaccinated. There are many reasons for this approach, including:
- The science around whether previous COVID-19 patients can contract the virus and spread it to others again is inconclusive.
- People who contract COVID-19 may shed the virus for a period of time that extends past the alleviation of symptoms or a positive test.
- Fellow UVA community members have no way of knowing which people previously tested positive and which are putting themselves and others at risk by ignoring health and safety standards. Universal adherence will avoid anxiety and potential conflict.
- Most importantly, following these standards is part of the commitment people who are on Grounds make to the University and to each other.
- Personal Protective Equipment. The University provided two cloth face coverings for each employee in the Academic Division. For students, the University has provided two cloth face coverings, two 2-ounce containers of hand sanitizer and a touch-tool, which is meant to assist in tasks such as opening doors and punching keypads, hands free. If preferred, employees and students may wear their own face coverings that meet policy standards.
- Hand Sanitizer. The University has placed 2,600 free-standing hand sanitizer stands in high-traffic common areas, plus an additional 1,000 one-gallon containers in spaces that don’t receive the free-standing units. The University has also purchased a supply of sanitizing wipes for use on surfaces such as desks and chairs and disposable face coverings that can be offered to students, faculty, staff, and others who might arrive without one.
- Cleaning and Disinfecting. UVA Facilities Management has trained custodial staff on new enhanced cleaning protocols based on industry standards and best practice guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control. In addition, they have adjusted custodial shifts to align with building use. Since it is not possible for the housekeeping staff to clean each classroom between uses, faculty members and students will be asked to wipe down podiums, surfaces, desks, chairs, and tabletops before and after use with disinfecting supplies stocked in the room.
- Signage/Barriers. Facilities Management has installed signs across Grounds and repositioned furnishings and fixtures as needed to promote distancing. They also have installed physical barriers at public service locations and in classrooms as needed.
- Services and Facilities. Dining, Parking, University Transit Services, IM-Rec Sports, Libraries, and student activities spaces have adjusted procedures to promote best practices and comply with the Governor’s Executive Orders and University policy. See the Operations page for more details.
- Travel. Restrictions on all University international and non-essential domestic travel will remain in place for the foreseeable future, regardless of funding source. For details, including information about seeking approval for exceptions, please review University Policy SEC-046: Health & Safety Requirement – Travel Restrictions on International and Domestic Travel for Business & Instructional Purposes. Due to the health and safety risks associated with travel during a pandemic, the University anticipates a limited number of approvals and only in exceptional circumstances. Any international University travel without a formal exception from the Office of the Provost will not be funded or reimbursed. If a supervisor, associate dean, or dean deems domestic travel essential, it will be reimbursed. If not, it will not be reimbursed. For domestic travel, no formal approval from the Office of the Provost is required.
Effective enforcement relies on a commitment by students, faculty, and staff to remind one another of appropriate policies and guidelines, and to hold one another accountable. If you see something, you should respectfully say something. Remind them of the appropriate public health guideline and ask if you can help them. For example, you might offer to assist them in locating a mask or accessing a resource. Respectfully engaging with others to promote compliance is the best way to ensure the University maintains a healthy and safe environment for all. UVA HR has also developed guidance for managers and employees on how to promote mask wearing and proper behavior on and around Grounds.
The University has defined non-compliance of University adopted public health policies and guidelines into two categories: minor and infrequent, and significant or repetitive. Minor and infrequent non-compliance is defined as unintentional or accidental violations of the University’s adopted public health policies or guidelines that occur infrequently, without the intent to harm or disrupt, and result in prompt action by the offending party to enter into compliance. Minor and infrequent non-compliance should be addressed at the lowest level possible through community ownership and active bystander engagement. Significant non-compliance is defined as intentional or reckless violations of the University’s adopted public health policies or guidelines. Such violations include engaging in conduct which intentionally or recklessly threatens the health and safety of the University community. Repetitive non-compliance refers to repeated violations of University adopted public health policies or guidelines despite informal feedback and/or bystander engagement. The University has provided a reporting platform for significant or repetitive violations. This platform can be found on the Just Report It and UVA Emergency Management websites.
In addition to the reporting platforms available to members of the UVA community, the University has developed a reporting form, specifically for persons in the surrounding community, to share concerns or to report behavior that may be contrary to our policies and the expectations of our students and employees regarding COVID-19 compliance. For more information, please visit the Community Concerns Reporting Portal.