Keeping Campus Safe

 

 

About COVID-19

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

COVID-19 is a respiratory illness caused by a new coronavirus that was first detected in Wuhan, China, in late 2019. It is not the same as the coronaviruses that cause the common cold, or the viruses that cause seasonal influenza.

Symptoms

According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tiredness and a dry cough. Other symptoms may include muscle aches and pains, sore throat, diarrhea, conjunctivitis, headache, loss of taste or smell and a skin rash. Serious symptoms include difficulty breathing or shortness of breath, chest pain or pressure, and loss of speech or movement. Anyone experiencing these serious symptoms should seek immediate medical attention. The WHO notes that about 80% of those who are infected recover without requiring specialized treatment.

On average it takes five to six days for symptoms to show after someone has been infected. However, the WHO notes it can take up to 14 days.

Experts continue to learn about COVID-19, but the virus is thought to spread mainly from person to person through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, speaks, sings or breathes. The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) notes being within approximately 6 feet of someone with the illness for a prolonged period of time or having direct contact with infectious secretions (such as being coughed on) are the most common ways the infection is spread. It is important to note that experts believe the virus can be spread by individuals who have been infected but are not showing symptoms.

It is possible the virus can be spread from contact with infected surfaces, but the CDC says this is not thought to be a common way the virus spreads.

Prevention

The CDC recommends a number of preventative actions to protect themselves and slow the spread of the virus.

  • Get a COVID-19 vaccine when you are eligible.
  • Maintain good social distance (6 feet or more).
  • Avoid contact with people who are sick or may have been exposed to the virus. Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • Avoid crowds and poorly ventilated indoor spaces.
  • Wear a cloth face covering or mask when in public and when around people who don’t live in your household, especially when social distancing is not possible. Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol.
  • Monitor your health daily and be alert for symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.

The University of Toledo has developed the Rocket Prevention Principles to ensure we are providing a safe campus environment for our employees, students and guests.


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masked man talks to masked woman on a bench

 

Health and Safety

Self-Care Guidance

If you think you have been exposed to COVID-19 and develop a fever at or above 100 degrees Fahrenheit, cough, chills, fatigue, shortness of breath or other COVID-19 symptoms, the Ohio Department of Health advises you should call your healthcare provider for medical advice. Your healthcare professional will work with guidelines from local and/or state public health officials to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

The CDC also has a “self-checker” tool available online to help with decisions about seeking appropriate medical care.

For those who are mildly ill, the Ohio Department of Health offers the following guidelines:

  • Stay at home. People with mild symptoms from COVID-19 are able to recover at home. Stay at home except to get medical care. Do not visit public spaces, and avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing or taxis.
  • Monitor your symptoms and stay in touch with your doctor. Seek medical care right away if your illness is worsening — for example, if you have difficulty breathing. Call ahead before you seek medical care. Call 911 if you have a medical emergency and notify the operator that you have or think you might have COVID-19. If possible, put on a face mask before medical help arrives.
  • Avoid other people and pets. As much as possible, you should stay in a specific "sick room" and away from other people and pets in your home.
  • Wear a cloth face covering.  While around other people or animals, cover your nose and mouth with a cloth face covering. Try to maintain at least a 6-foot distance from others. You don’t need to wear a face covering if you are alone.

Quarantine/Isolation

Quarantine: At the recommendation of the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department, the University continues to follow the primary CDC guidelines that unvaccinated individuals who have come in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 should quarantine for 14 days.

Individuals who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or who have recovered from a laboratory-confirmed positive COVID-19 diagnosis in the previous three months do not need to quarantine following an exposure to COVID-19, as long as they aren’t experiencing symptoms.

To be considered fully vaccinated, individuals must have completed a full course of the COVID-19 vaccine at least two weeks prior to their exposure.

Anyone who develops symptoms of COVID-19 after an exposure to the virus should isolate themselves from others and contact their healthcare provider.

Isolation: Individuals who have tested positive for COVID-19 should self-isolate for at least 10 days, per CDC guidelines.

As the University has previously communicated, students will not be penalized if they must miss class due to an illness or the need to quarantine. The Office of Student Advocacy and Support will assist students with making any necessary arrangements, and all materials will be accessible remotely. They can be reached at 419.530.2471 or rocketresponse@utoledo.edu.

Employees who are required to quarantine should speak with their supervisor about the possibility of a remote work arrangement. In the event that an employee’s job responsibilities cannot be facilitated remotely, the employee will need to submit leave to cover the time off.

Additional information about flexible work agreements and the University’s return-to-work criteria following close contact, suspected or confirmed COVID-19 is available from Human Resources.

Student Health Services

Student health centers are available on both Main Campus and Health Science Campus.

Main Campus – University Health Center

The University Health Center is open from noon to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday. Call 419.530.3451 to schedule a telehealth or in-person appointment.

Health Science Campus – Student Health and Wellness Center

The Student Health and Wellness Center on Health Science Campus is open from 10 a.m. to 3:45 p.m. Monday through Thursday and from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. Friday. The center is open year-round, closing only Dec. 25 - Jan. 1. Call 419.383.5000 for an appointment.

Pharmacy

Comprehensive pharmacy access is available through outpatient pharmacies on both campuses with multiple locations for ease of access.

Telehealth Services

UToledo students, faculty, staff and their beneficiaries can access on-demand virtual care services for urgent care needs daily from 8 a.m. to 10 p.m. through a partnership with University of Toledo Physicians. Services are covered by UToledo’s student health insurance plan and all of UToledo’s employee health insurance plans. Depending on the plan, co-pays, deductibles or co-insurance may apply. All other insurance will be billed in line with plan coverage. Individuals without health insurance or who elect to self-pay will be charged $59. Services can be accessed online.

Students enrolled in the University's student health insurance plan administered by Anthem Student Advantage also will have access to telehealth services covered by Anthem.

COVID-19 Testing

Symptomatic Testing

UToledo has COVID-19 testing available via The University of Toledo Medical Center for all symptomatic individuals on Main Campus and Health Science Campus. Test results will be shared with the patient and the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department. Call 419.383.4545 for an appointment. While waiting on test results, the CDC recommends individuals experiencing COVID-19 symptoms stay home and monitor their health.

Insurance will be charged for the test. Students needing financial assistance can receive help by contacting Student Affairs at 419.530.7963. The Toledo-Lucas County Health Department also maintains a list of community testing sites.

Surveillance Testing

UToledo continues to partner with UTMC to conduct weekly random surveillance testing for asymptomatic faculty, staff and students who are physically on campus during spring semester.

Individuals who are selected for the random surveillance testing will be notified and provided instructions through their UToledo email account. Participants will be given a nasal swab antigen test, which provides results in approximately 30 minutes. Positive results will be confirmed with a PCR test.

Participation in the random surveillance testing is required for residential students and highly encouraged for everyone else who is studying or working on campus. Residential students who decline testing without documentation of a qualifying exemption may be subject to discipline under the UToledo Student Code of Conduct.

The University is encouraging faculty, staff and students who are fully vaccinated to continue to participate in the weekly random COVID-19 surveillance testing if they are selected.

Participation in surveillance testing remains required for all residential students, regardless of whether they have been vaccinated. Additional information about COVID-19 testing requirements for residential students is available on the Residence Life website.

A limited number of tests will be available for asymptomatic students, faculty and staff who are not selected to participate in the University’s weekly random testing but would like to be tested for COVID-19.  Available appointments will be shared on covid19test.utoledo.edu.

Covid-19 Vaccine

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration has currently authorized three COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use. All individuals over 16 in the state of Ohio are now eligible for to receive a vaccine.

The University, in partnership with UTMC, has held a number of on-campus vaccine clinics exclusively for faculty, staff and students age 18 and above since April 1.

Beginning May 10, students, faculty and staff members may receive the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine at the University Health Center on Main Campus from noon to 4 p.m., Monday through Friday. No appointments are needed.

Information about additional vaccine clinics for students and employees will be shared as it becomes available.

UTMC continues to serve as one of Ohio’s COVID-19 vaccination sites providing vaccines to the general public though its partnership with the Toledo-Lucas County Health Department and the Ohio Department of Health. 

Additional information about the COVID-19 vaccine, including frequently asked questions, the University’s role in community vaccination efforts and how to register for an appointment at one of the community vaccination sites is available on the University’s Dispensing Vaccines webpage.

Please note that the University and UTMC are not currently able to directly schedule vaccines for the general public or accommodate walk-in patients.

Reporting Positive Cases

In the event that a student, faculty member or staff member informs a University employee they have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been diagnosed as a probable case, that employee should instruct the individual to review the CDC guidance on self-isolation and symptom monitoring, and report the disclosure to the appropriate office, depending on whether the ill individual is a student, faculty member, staff member or UTMC employee.

To voluntarily report a positive case, individuals should contact their designated representative:

  • For faculty, contact the Provost Office at 419.530.8481 or by email.
  • For staff, contact Human Resources at 419.530.1497 or by email.
  • For students, contact the Division of Student Affairs on-call representative at 419.343.9946 or by email.
  • For UTMC employees, contact Infection Prevention and Control at 419.218.3744 (pager) or by email.
  • For vendors, contractors or others doing business at UToledo, contact the Office of Auxiliary Services at 419.530.5759 or by email.

Contact Tracing

The Toledo-Lucas County Health Department is handling contact tracing for any cases connected to the University.

Individuals who were in close contact (within 6 feet) for a prolonged period of time (a total of 15 minutes or more) with someone who tested positive for COVID-19 will need to take precautionary measures, such as 14-day quarantine. The CDC website has additional guidance of what constitutes an exposure and what steps an individual should take following an exposure.

University representatives will provide the health department with information for contact tracing if permissible or required by law. Without identifying the ill individual, University faculty or staff may notify specific students and others that a person with whom they were in contact over the past 14 days has tested positive and that they should take appropriate cautionary measures.

Mental Health

We are all experiencing a lot of change, uncertainty and disruptions of our usual routines. These new challenges give us an opportunity to explore new coping strategies and new ways of connecting. However, it is not unusual to feel stress, nervousness, anxiety or a range of other emotions.

The University of Toledo is committed to helping you stay healthy during the COVID-19 pandemic — and that includes your mental health.

We cannot control many aspects of our current situation, but we can control how we respond. You do not have to feel alone in responding to this unusual situation. You can choose to reach out to talk to someone who can just be a good listener, or who can help you get additional support or crisis assistance.

Additional resources are available through Rocket Wellness.

University Counseling Center

The Counseling Center continues to offer services to currently enrolled students via teleservices from 8:15 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday through Friday. Appointments can be made by calling 419.530.2426. UToledo students who are experiencing distress needing support after 5 p.m. may call the after-hours support line at 419.255.9585. Or, you can access the Crisis Text line by texting “ROCKET” or “HOME” to 741741.

Employee Assistance Program

If you are feeling anxious from this situation, you may benefit from seeking counseling. Faculty and staff should contact their mental health provider or reach out to the University’s Employee Assistance Program (EAP) or call 1-800-227-6007 (Use “UT” as the username).

Lucas County COVID-19 Emotional Support Line

The Lucas County COVID-19 Emotional Support Line is a telephone support service provided by the Mental Health and Recovery Services Board of Lucas County. Calls are answered by individuals prepared to provide emotional support to Lucas County residents who are experiencing anxiety, loneliness, depression or some other emotional or mental health challenges due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The emotional support line can be reached from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. seven days a week at 419.442.0580.

Crisis Resources

  • Suicide Prevention Lifeline — 1.800.273.8255, 24 hours a day
  • Rescue Mental Health and Addiction Crisis Line — 419.255.3125, 24 hours a day
  • Childhelp National Child Abuse Hotline — 1.800.422.4453, 24 hours a day
  • Lucas County domestic violence hotline — 419.245.3324, 24 hours a day
  • YWCA Domestic Violence Crisis Line — 1.888.341.7386

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UNIVERSITY OPERATIONS

2021 Summer and Fall Terms

With Ohio’s recent announcement that all individuals over 16 will be eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine March 29, the University is actively preparing for more traditional summer and fall terms later this year.

The University expects to return to a traditional academic course schedule this summer and fall, offering most courses in-person in the fall. UToledo will continue to offer a variety of course modalities including online and hybrid courses.

On-campus housing is expected to return to a more normal occupancy while still observing recommended health and safety measures.

Plans are also underway for fall 2021, including in-person activities such as New Student Convocation and Welcome Week.

Spring Semester

UToledo continues to offer face-to-face instruction in spring semester 2021, as well as remote, online and hybrid/blended instruction to accommodate social distancing measures in classrooms and also provide flexibility to our students.

Classes began Tuesday, Jan. 19. There will be no spring break. Instead, there will be instructional breaks scheduled during the semester. The dates for final exams May 3-7 remain the same.

The University will celebrate spring Commencement on Saturday, May 8 with multiple in-person outdoor ceremonies, in line with new state guidance that allows events at sporting venues to reopen at 30% capacity.

Graduating students will be split into at least two groups for separate ceremonies and guests will be limited with tickets required. All attendees will be required to wear face masks and keep at least 6 feet from others not in their household. University leadership is collaborating with public health experts to carefully plan the commencement events and will share more details in the coming weeks.

Course Format

Due to the need to accommodate social distancing measures in classrooms and to provide flexibility for students, UToledo is using multiple course formats for spring 2021 including: face-to-face, remote, online and hybrid/blended.

The University expects to return to a traditional academic course schedule this summer and fall, offering most courses in-person in the fall. UToledo will continue to offer a variety of course modalities including online and hybrid courses.

Study Abroad

Study Abroad has been cancelled for summer 2021.

Human Resources

Flexible Work Arrangements

The University will return to on-campus operations by June 1.

UToledo will honor existing flexible work agreements, not to exceed May 31, 2021, for employees unable to return to campus sooner.

Employees in need of workplace accommodations due to a disability or medical condition should complete the ADA Accommodations Request Form.

Additional information about working through the COVID-19 pandemic is available on the Working Through COVID-19 website. Employees with questions specific to their individual circumstances should contact their supervisor or Human Resources consultant.

Face Coverings

The University is following an order from the Ohio Department of Health that requires all employees to wear face coverings while at work.

This applies to any faculty, staff member or student worker who is working on campus or conducting University business off-site. At a minimum, the face covering must be cloth or fabric and cover the employee’s mouth and nose. Medical-grade masks are not required outside clinical settings.

Wearing a cloth mask is meant to slow the spread of the virus, particularly from individuals who may have the virus but are not showing obvious symptoms. There is some evidence that cloth face masks offer a degree of protection against infection, but the primary reason health experts encourage mask wearing is to reduce the chance of infected individuals from spreading the disease.

Employees who are working alone in their assigned work area — such as a private office with floor-to-ceiling walls with the door closed — are not required to wear a face covering. They must, however, put a mask on when moving to any other part of the University. Cubicles, even those that have a door, are not considered an enclosed space as defined in the updated protocols and require the individual to wear a mask.

Employees may be granted an exemption if they meet one of several criteria set by the state of Ohio, such as a medical reason or working in a setting in which existing laws or regulations prohibit face coverings. Exemption request forms are available from Human Resources.

Admissions

UToledo is using a test-optional admissions model, which means prospective students are not required to submit standardized test scores such as the SAT or ACT. University leaders have been discussing the policy change and moved forward with a pilot program now as high schools and testing centers across the country are closing to help stop the spread of coronavirus. Additional flexibility will be implemented in the short term due to limited access to transcripts and GPAs amid the closures during the coronavirus outbreak. We will use self-reported grades and GPA to conditionally admit students until final transcripts are available. Select scholarships and highly competitive academic programs may still require an ACT/SAT score.


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STUDENT RESOURCES

Academic Support

The Center for Success Coaching is available at 419.530.1250 to assist students with questions and concerns related to academic challenges and resource support. Additional information is available on the student success website

Financial Support

The University has organized emergency financial assistance programs for current students experiencing financial hardship as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic through the existing Rocket Aid application process.

A student only needs to fill out one Rocket Aid application and the UToledo team will work with each student individually to identify all options available to assist them. This includes funding available through federal relief programs and donors.

Student Support

The Office of Student Advocacy and Support is ready and able to assist students who may need help. They can be reached at 419.530.2471 or rocketresponse@utoledo.edu.


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Housing and Dining

Dining

A number of changes have been made to the on-campus dining experience, with new offerings and enhanced health and safety measures. UToledo through its new partnership with Chartwells is for the first time offering mobile ordering with contactless pickup from many on-campus dining locations.

To promote a safe dining experience, UToledo has installed clear plastic barriers at all points of sale, incorporated distancing measures in both seating areas and lines, and implemented enhanced cleaning measures throughout campus. Masks are required in dining halls except for when individuals are eating. UToledo will continue to follow all state and local guidelines.

For more information on hours of operation, locations and menu items, visit UToledo Dining Services.

Housing

To promote health and safety in our residence halls, UToledo has made several changes for the 2020-21 academic year. All housing in traditional residence halls is now either single or double rooms. Triples and quads have been eliminated. UToledo also is offering a new super single option, which converts a traditional double room into a larger single room.

Common spaces, including lounges and laundry rooms, are marked with maximum occupancy signs and are cleaned on a regular basis. Additional hand sanitizer stations and cleaning supplies for students are provided throughout the residence halls, including in laundry rooms and bathrooms. Lounge furniture has been rearranged to encourage social distancing. UToledo also is limiting items that can be checked out at the front desk.

Face coverings are required in all residence halls, except when a student is in their room or suite. UToledo is limiting visitors to one guest per student. All guests must first register at the front desk.

For spring 2021, the University required all residential students to take a no-cost rapid antigen test upon their return to campus. Residential students selected as part of the University’s weekly random surveillance testing also are required to participate. Students who decline testing without documentation of a qualifying exemption may be subject to discipline under the UToledo Student Code of Conduct.

Additional information about COVID-19 testing requirements for residential students is available on the Residence Life website.

Should a student require self-isolation due to a positive COVID-19 diagnosis, UToledo has set aside alternative housing to protect the health and safety of all students.

In the event we have to make adjustments to de-densify our residence halls, we will follow the CDC guidelines to ensure we maintain a safe environment for all students.


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a woman with a mask and gloves on cleans a classroom

a woman with a mask and gloves on cleans a laundry room in a dorm

 

a woman cleans the exercise equipment at The REc

a young woman wears a mask and kicks a soccer ball outside

Campus Life

Events and Programs

In-person activities are resuming based on the current guidance of state and local health officials, though the University continues to require extra precautions for on-campus special events and gatherings.

Outdoor activities such as the weekly Music on the Mall and the Big Event will occur this spring, as well as one of UToledo’s most loved traditions, Songfest, which will be held with appropriate social distancing in place.

Any events with an expected attendance that exceeds the guidance outlined by the state of Ohio — currently set at 10 individuals — must be preapproved by a college dean or department vice president. Requests for events of 50 or more individuals must also go before the University’s senior leadership team.

To seek approval for an event with more than 10 attendees, individuals should complete the Spring Program and Event Registry request form. Requests will be approved on a case-by-case basis.

Participants in all University events must maintain at least 6 feet of distance from other attendees and everyone must wear face coverings. Additionally, names and contact information for all attendees must be collected to facilitate contact tracing in the event of a COVID-19 outbreak.

Rec Center

The Student Recreation Center on Main Campus and Morse Fitness Center on Health Science Campus are open with additional measures in place to practice appropriate social distancing and enhanced cleaning procedures to keep campus safe. For more information visit the Recreational Services website.

Rocket Athletics

UToledo’s varsity sports teams have been able to compete on a limited basis and are following strict protocols for safety and COVID-19 testing.

No general public attendance is allowed at home Rocket sporting events. This policy will continue through the spring and will remain in place until further notice.

Attendance policies regarding the 2021 football season and other fall sports will be announced at a later date.


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Travel Restrictions

University Travel

In response to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, The University of Toledo is extending its restriction on nonessential University-sponsored travel through Aug. 23, 2021.

This includes both domestic and international travel.

Any exceptions must be approved by the University president, provost or executive vice president of finance and administration. If you feel your travel is essential, contact your supervisor or department chair.

The University is evaluating its approach for sponsored travel during the fall semester, which begins Aug. 30.

 

Personal Travel

The University continues to encourage all faculty, staff and students to avoid unnecessary out-of-state and international travel. If individuals do travel, the University is strongly encouraging them to voluntarily register their travel plans. Individuals who did not previously register travel may also use the form to report their return.

Ohioans are encouraged to review the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance when considering travel.

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Research

The Office of Research and Sponsored Programs continues to provide guidance related to all University research.


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Last Updated: 5/11/21