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Unvaccinated students, faculty and staff are required to be tested regularly for COVID-19. Testing is required on a weekly basis. If and when someone is fully vaccinated, they will no longer be required to test. 

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FALL 2021 GUIDEBOOK

The residential experience at the University of Kentucky is transformative. It is essential to the institution’s mission of education, research, service and care. UK is committed to providing this residential experience as the Commonwealth and the world navigate the COVID-19 pandemic. As always, the health and safety of the campus community remains UK’s top priority.  
  
President Capilouto wrote to the campus on August 6, expressing that  

“Once again, we live in a world fraught with anxiety, in which we seem to confront more unknowns than knowns. That sense of uncertainty extends beyond the borders of our campus. It’s in our homes and in our schools. We worry about our children and our loved ones. While we take care of each other on our campus, we must also extend that sense of concern and compassion to our extended community as well. I believe we can still have that experience and the year that we all want. We are facing a formidable foe in this virus. It’s a foe that we can only defeat together. I know that we can. I know that we will.” 

To that end, this fall planning guide provides an overview of policies, recommendations, guidelines and expectations for members of the UK community.  

Importantly, vaccines remain our best and most important defense against the virus.

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Guiding Principles

  1. In everything we do, we are working to ensure the health, safety and well-being of everyone in our community. In doing so, we are guided by data and the best available science as informed by the ongoing efforts of the START team. 
  2. A vibrant residential campus experience in 2021-2022 is a critical educational, moral and financial imperative for the University of Kentucky – its students, its employees, its service to the Commonwealth and its future.  
  3. The evidence and science are clear: vaccines are our best defense against the virus. While we utilize various tools to ensure campus health and safety, we are committed to vaccinating as many members of our community as possible.  
  4. To ensure physical and mental health of our community – as well as our commitment to a more robust campus experience – we are utilizing what worked last year in terms of policies and our processes for protecting our community. 
  5. All mission-critical areas are incorporated into our overall plan. UK HealthCare, UK Research and UK Athletics have implemented operational policies guided by our health experts and the distinctive needs of their people, spaces and efforts. 
  6. We are committed to being a leader for our Commonwealth and our country in our response to this pandemic and in our efforts to accelerate out of this crisis. 

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General Health and Safety FAQs

What are some key things I can do to protect my own health and safety? 

  • The most important thing anyone can do to protect their own safety, and the safety of those around them, is to be vaccinated for COVID-19. Vaccines remain our best and most important defense against the virus. Studies continue to show that the vaccines protect against serious illness even from the Delta variant. You can schedule a COVID-19 vaccine appointment here. Additionally, masks provide another layer of protection, particularly when worn indoors. UK is requiring all individuals—faculty, staff, students and visitors—to wear masks when they are in indoor common areas or gathering spaces.  

 

What resources is UK providing to support my health and safety? 

  • UK built a modern public health infrastructure in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. At the center of these efforts is Health Corps, the hub for UK’s contact tracing, testing, screening and other COVID-19 support services. These staff, which include contact tracers, wellness connectors, academic coordinators and others, provide resources, guidance and other support to members of the UK community. You can contact Health Corps at healthcorps@uky.edu or 859-218-SAFE.  

 

What is the difference between quarantine, self-quarantine and isolation, and what are the circumstances under which I would be required or recommended to take these precautions? 

  • Isolation and quarantine refer to a defined period of movement restriction associated with a public health order from a local public health authority or UK Health Corps. Isolation orders are the result of an individual’s positive COVID-19 test result; quarantine orders are the result of an individual’s exposure to someone else who has tested positive for COVID-19. Self-quarantine is a step someone might take at their own discretion and in the interest of their own health and the health of others as a result of a situation related to COVID-19. 

  • In general, isolation orders last for ten days from an individual’s index date. Index dates are determined on a case-by-case basis and are typically either the date of symptom onset or the date of the positive COVID-19 test result. The exact length of time is at the discretion of the local health department. 

  • Quarantine orders typically last 7, 10 or 14 days, based on the current CDC guidelines. If you remain symptom-free throughout your quarantine and receive negative results from a PCR test on or after day 5, your quarantine can end after 7 days. If you remain symptom-free but do not test, then your quarantine can end after 10 days. All others should complete a 14-day quarantine. 

 

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?  

  • Common symptoms of COVID-19 include fatigue, headache, congestion, runny nose, sore throat, a fever above 100.4, feeling feverish, chills, body aches, cough, loss of taste or smell, diarrhea, shortness of breath, nausea or vomiting and abdominal pain. 

 

What should I do if I am feeling sick or am experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 (even if I have received the vaccine)?  

  • The daily health screener is an important tool for monitoring one’s health, and unvaccinated individuals are expected to complete it. Members of the UK community are encouraged to download the screening app and indicate their symptoms on the screener when and if they are feeling ill. This allows someone from UK Health Corps to reach out and provide support. Alternatively, individuals can contact Health Corps or reach out to their health care provider directly. If you are feeling ill with COVID-19 symptoms, it is recommended that you get a test and self-quarantine while you wait on the results. Importantly, even if you have received the vaccine, you should still use the screener as a tool to receive support from Health Corps, should you develop symptoms.  

 

What is UK Health Corps and is it still operational?  

  • At the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, we created a modern public health infrastructure on our campus. At the core of that is UK Health Corps — a group of staff who has served as the backbone of our efforts to keep our community safe. Health Corps supports our entire community — faculty, staff and students. Health Corps remains fully operational this fall. 
     
    As in the past, all members of our community should contact Health Corps at 859-218-SAFE (7233) or healthcorps@uky.edu for assistance if they test positive for, or are exposed to, COVID-19. As contact tracers, wellness connectors, academic coordinators and more, UK Health Corps staff have undergone extensive training, allowing us to make it as easy as possible to be safe on our campus. Students, faculty and staff can — and should — continue to utilize the important services they provide. You can learn more about Health Corps here. We also meet regularly with the local health department to coordinate our COVID-19 response. 

 

Why is UK striving for 90% vaccination among students, faculty and staff? 

  • Vaccines represent our best defense against COVID-19. There is not a definitive number for establishing what is known as community or herd immunity. However, most scientific literature has estimated between 75% and 90%. Given the numbers of people who we estimate may receive exemptions for health and/or religious reasons, we believe 90% is an important goal to attain, although we will work throughout the year to get to as close to full vaccination levels on campus as possible. UK health experts also are recommending vaccination even for individuals who have previously contracted COVID-19, as studies suggest vaccines are a stronger, more effective means to immunity.  

 

What information is available to me regarding the rates of COVID-19 infection on campus? 

  • UK has published a dashboard of data related to COVID-19 on campus. This includes numbers related to tests, such as the number of current COVID-19 cases, number of recovered COVID-19 cases, number of tests conducted, number of positive results, etc. Additionally, the percentage of community members who have been vaccinated is periodically updated. You can view the dashboard here. 

  • Our employees come from all over the state and are testing in different places. When they’re tested, their results are reported to their local health department. As such, UK does not have testing data for all employees.  

 

What are the primary factors UK is monitoring to maintain the overall health and well-being of the campus? 

  • The underlying factors the institution uses to maintain the overall health and well-being of the campus and respond to COVID-19 rates, as well as our operational status, include: 

    • Vaccination rates among the UK community. 

    • Supply of personal protective equipment. 

    • Prevalence of the virus. 

    • The capacity for daily screening and ongoing contact tracing. 

    • The capacity for isolation and quarantining. 

    • The ability to provide residential experience on our campus. 

    • Guidance from local, state and federal health and public policy officials. 

    • The number of critical care beds in UK HealthCare to serve both campus and community. 

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Vaccines

Vaccines are our best defense against the virus. Vaccines are strongly encouraged for all UK community members, but not mandated for non-UK HealthCare employees. We will, of course, continue to monitor this issue and change plans, if necessary, to ensure the health and safety of our campus.  

UK is striving to reach and exceed an 90% vaccination rate among the entire community—students, faculty and staff.  Community members can schedule a vaccine appointment here.

The COVID-19 vaccination is required for UK HealthCare health care providers, staff, trainees, learners and those who work in UK HealthCare facilities. More information about the UK HealthCare vaccine requirement, including the process for requesting religious and medical exemptions can be found here. 

UK has vaccination records for individuals who were vaccinated at the UK’s Kroger Field Clinic. We strongly encourage those who have been vaccinated through non-UK providers to verify that status with the university so that requirements for steps such as testing and screening can be modified. Upload vaccination documentation here, via our self-report tool. If you have misplaced or have not yet received your official documentation, contact Health Corps (859-218-SAFE or healthcorps@uky.edu). 

UK accepts all vaccines authorized by the World Health Organization (WHO) for emergency use. See which vaccines have been approved (i.e., listed for emergency use) by the WHO and follow the approval process of others here

The CDC has now recommended that vaccinated individuals who are moderately to severely immunocompromised receive a third-dose booster shot. On August 23, UK HealthCare opened registration for appointments for third-dose booster shots of the Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines for solid-organ transplant recipients and other immunocompromised individuals, in accordance with guidance from the FDA and the CDC. Click here for more information.

 

Vaccine FAQs 

Why is UK HealthCare requiring vaccines for UK HealthCare employees?  

  • Vaccines are, without question, our best defense against the COVID-19 virus. UK HealthCare joins other hospitals in the state as well as nearly 60 major medical organizations, including the American Medical Association and the American Nurses Association, which have called for mandatory vaccination of health care workers as the highly contagious Delta variant drives a new surge of coronavirus cases. 

 

What does it mean to be fully vaccinated?  

  • In general, people are considered fully vaccinated 2 weeks after their second dose in a WHO authorized  2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 2 weeks after a WHO authorized single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson. 

 

Is the university going to require vaccinations for anyone else, beyond UK HealthCare employees? 

  • Not at this time; however, President Capilouto announced in his August 6 email to campus that, to protect our campus, we will begin considering these options for staff and faculty as well — including mandatory vaccines and mandatory testing on a regular basis. These measures are being considered as part of a thorough and comprehensive examination of options to keep our community healthy and safe. 

 

How do I know if UK has my vaccination record?  

 

What is the purpose of the daily screener?  

  • The daily screener is a powerful tool to connect students, faculty and staff with resources and support if you are affected by a COVID-19. Should you become ill or concerned about a COVID-19 exposure, indicating this on the screener will initiate response from UK Health Corps to help you evaluate your situation and connect with resources to responsibly manage your own health and protect the health of our community. Please visit the “Screening” section for more information on the daily screener. 

 

I recently got vaccinated or uploaded my vaccine documentation, and I am still receiving the daily screener. Why is this? 

  • You will continue receiving the daily screener reminder until you are considered fully vaccinated. This means you will stop receiving the reminder fourteen days after receiving your single dose (Johnson & Johnson) or second dose (Pfizer and Moderna). If you have any questions about your vaccine documentation, contact Health Corps at healthcorps@uky.edu or 859-218-SAFE.  

 

How do I request a religious or medical exemption for the UK HealthCare COVID-19 vaccine requirement?  

  • Religious and medical exemption requests for UK HealthCare employees follow the same process as influenza vaccine and exceptions - including some type of identification. The university communicated with individuals requesting exemption during the week of August 16.  

 

I have already had COVID-19. Can I submit proof of this instead of a COVID-19 vaccination to be removed from the screening and testing requirements for unvaccinated individuals?  

  • No. Because the protection that someone gains from previously having COVID-19 will vary from person to person and we don’t know how long natural immunity might last, the only way to be removed from these requirements is to provide proof of a WHO-authorized vaccination. Even if you have already had COVID-19, you should be vaccinated. Recent studies suggest that vaccination may be more effective especially when it comes to variants of COVID-19, compared to immunity from prior infection.  

 

What evidence is leading the push to vaccinate 90% of the UK community?  

  • There is not a definitive number for establishing what is known as community or herd immunity. However, most scientific literature has estimated herd immunity requires 75 to 90 percent of the community to be vaccinated. Given the numbers of people who we estimate may receive exemptions for health and/or religious reasons, we believe 90 percent is an important goal to attain, and we want to surpass it. UK health experts also are recommending vaccination even for individuals who have previously contracted COVID-19, as studies suggest vaccines are a stronger, more effective means to immunity.  

 

Can I ask people if they’ve had the vaccine? Can I ask them to provide proof of vaccination?  

  • No. For the reasons explained below, faculty members and supervisors outside of UK HealthCare shall not ask about the vaccination status of any student or employee. Faculty members who are supervising health care college students, residents and fellows in clinical rotations within UK HealthCare may ask whether the student has completed UK HealthCare's requirements to be present in a clinical environment (submit proof of vaccination to UK HealthCare or obtain a medical/religious exemption through UK HealthCare's process). 

  • The justification for this advice is twofold:  

    • Under the federal and state constitutional rights to privacy, a university official, such as a faculty member or a supervisor, generally may not compel an individual to disclose their vaccine status and/or whether they have received a religious or medical exemption to a university official.  The information is not HIPAA-protected, but it does fall within the federal and state constitutional rights of privacy.  Moreover, given the power differential between faculty members and students or between supervisors and subordinates, a "request" likely would be viewed as a demand. 

    • Requiring disclosure could lead to discrimination against the unvaccinated, regardless of whether the decision not to receive the vaccine was based on a medical condition or religious reasons. 

 

Does the university have a policy in place for falsified vaccine cards or records?

  • The University of Kentucky utilizes a self-reporting tool where community members provide verification of vaccination status.  After the vaccine card document is uploaded, Health Corps compares and verifies the digital image of the vaccine card to the information about the vaccine submitted into the self-report tool for every submission.  A Health Corps team member manually reviews each vaccine card and can reject it if there are any concerns about the validity of the document. If concerns or discrepancies exist, we take additional steps to further to verify the vaccine documentation. Anyone found falsifying records would be reported to the Office of Student Conduct or UK Human Resources. There are also federal penalties up to a $5,000 fine or five years in prison for misuse of a federal seal, including the CDC and HHS seals that appear on the vaccination cards. 

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Masks

All Individuals: Vaccinated and Unvaccinated 

  • All individuals, regardless of vaccination status, must wear masks or face coverings in indoor spaces on campus where people gather — including, but not limited to, classrooms, the Gatton Student Center, shared office spaces, hallways and common spaces like the lobby of a residence hall.

  • Faculty members can ask students to leave their classroom if they refuse to wear a mask. In addition, faculty members can also report this to the Office of Student Conduct. 

  • Use this form to share concerns about employee failure to follow campus masking protocols. 

  • Masks are not required for any individuals while utilizing recreational equipment or while exercising in recreational spaces such as basketball courts.

  • Masks are not required for any vaccinated individual who is alone in an indoor space. 

  • Masks are not required for vaccinated individuals outside. 

  • However, unvaccinated individuals should wear masks outside when around other people. 

  • These requirements apply to all individuals—faculty, staff, students and visitors to campus. 

  • As a reminder, under the federal and state constitutional rights to privacy, a university official, such as a faculty member or a supervisor, generally may not compel an individual to disclose their vaccine status. For additional information on this topic, please see the above section of vaccine FAQs.

  • The institution strongly encourages moving events, where and when possible, to outdoor locations. Event planners can work with the events management team for alternate locations. All event planners, from across the UK campus, should, as they have in the past, coordinate with the Office of University Events to ensure their event protocols align with university policies, including mask policies. 

  • Given UK’s ongoing successful vaccination efforts and our indoor mask requirement, offices and classrooms have returned to normal configurations for the fall. Community members are encouraged to avoid crowding when possible, and to make personal distancing decisions in the best interest of the health and safety of our community. 

  • Everyone (particularly unvaccinated individuals) is encouraged to eat outside when possible. 

  • Per the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, face shields are not as effective at protecting you or the people around you from respiratory droplets. They have large gaps below and alongside the face where respiratory droplets may escape and reach others around you and will not protect you from respiratory droplets from others.

    All individuals — regardless of vaccination status — are required to wear face coverings in any indoor space on UK’s campus. A face shield may be used ONLY in addition to wearing a mask. However, in certain settings where it is important to the curriculum or where an individual may be hard of hearing, a face shield may be used without a mask indoors as long as the individual wearing the face shield:

    • Remains six feet away from other individuals and
    • Is behind plexiglass

 

Unvaccinated Individuals  

  • Unvaccinated (and vaccinated) individuals are required to wear a mask or face covering when inside any campus facility, except while actively utilizing recreational equipment or spaces such as basketball courts in recreational facilities. Individuals who are not vaccinated also should wear a mask outside if they are near other people. 

  • Unvaccinated individuals can remove their masks when eating or drinking in dining facilities.  

 

Vaccinated Individuals 

  • Vaccinated individuals are not required to wear masks when alone in private spaces, such as offices or residence hall rooms.  

  • However, in cubicles, hallways, gathering areas, conference rooms and lobbies where people come together, masks should be worn by everyone, irrespective of vaccination status. 

  • Individuals in their own offices should instruct others to wear masks before entering their private offices.  

 

Guide to Wearing a Mask  

  • Masks need to cover both mouth and nose, and they should: 

    • Fit snugly but comfortably 

    • Be secured with ties or ear loops 

    • Be made of multiple layers of fabric or medical grade material, such as KN95 or surgical masks 

    • Allow for breathing without restriction 

  • Visit this link for more information on proper masking. 

  • Visit this link for more information from the CDC on how to correctly wear a mask or face covering. 

  • Watch this video from our partners at UK HealthCare to learn how to safely put on and take off a face mask. 

 

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) 

  • All personal protective equipment, including hand sanitizer and plexiglass dividers, are being monitored and replenished as necessary. If you have requests for personal protective equipment in specific spaces, contact Mary Vosevich at mary.vosevich@uky.edu.

The best path forward, especially to maximize the safety of you and others, and to be able to take full advantage of all campus resources and privileges is to GET VACCINATED. 

 

Masks FAQs 

For the purposes of the masking policy, what constitutes a campus space?  

  • All University of Kentucky and UK HealthCare buildings are spaces where the masking policy will be enforced.  Campus spaces also include leased spaces. 

 

What can I ask of people who come into my office or other private meeting spaces for in-person interaction?  

  • All individuals, irrespective of vaccine status, are required to wear masks when they are in indoor common spaces.  

 

Can faculty members ask students to leave the classroom if they refuse to wear a mask?  

 

Can I request that someone wear a mask, and what do I do if they are unwilling or unable?  

  • At this time, masks are required in all common spaces of indoor facilities regardless of vaccination status. Below are some tips for navigating conversations related to mask-wearing.  

  • First, assume the best in your colleague, employee or student. They may have forgotten to put it on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus:

    • Don’t forget your mask.

    • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements.

    • Please wear a mask when you come to my office/cubicle.

  • If an employee refuses to wear a mask after they have been asked to do so, refer them to their supervisor. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. You may also use this form to share concerns about employee failure to follow campus masking protocols. 
  • If a student refuses to wear a mask in an indoor space, you can report this to the Office of Student Conduct

  • Masks will be made available in high-traffic areas. 

  • In terms of general classroom management, you can contact the Center for the Enhancement of Learning and Teaching (CELT) for questions about how to handle sensitive situations that arise in the classroom. In addition, the Office of Student Conduct can provide a presentation about appropriate conflict resolution strategies. 

 

Do employees in cubicles need to wear a mask all day? 

  • Yes. Regardless of vaccination status, employees in cubicles need to wear a mask while indoors including while working in a cubicle. 

 

What are the masking requirements for outdoor events and spaces? 

  • Masks are not required for anyone alone in indoor or outdoor spaces. Unvaccinated individuals should wear masks outside when around other people. 

   

Are individuals who are not students, faculty or staff required wear masks in indoor campus facilities?  

  • Anyone coming to campus must follow mask requirements. This includes all visitors, vendors, third-party contractors, etc.  

 

Are speakers or presenters at large functions required to wear a mask?    

  • Visitors to campus are expected to comply with university mask policies. Speakers and presenters are required to wear a mask unless they are speaking from behind a podium that is appropriately distanced from the audience or they are standing behind a plexiglass divider. If individuals are presenting behind plexiglass, they do not need to wear a mask or face covering. However, if they move away from the plexiglass, they should wear a mask.   

  • Face shields should only be used while lecturing. 

 

What are the repercussions for not wearing a mask in indoor common areas or gathering spaces?  

  • We trust our community to comply with these measures which are in place to protect everyone’s health and safety. This community has, since the beginning of the pandemic, banded together to keep each other safe. At the same time, mechanisms are in place to address noncompliance.  

  • Noncompliant students will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct.  

  • If an employee refuses to wear a mask after they have been asked to do so, refer them to their supervisor. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. You may also use this form to share concerns about employee failure to follow campus masking protocols. 

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Screening

The daily screener, a tool utilized by Health Corps to support the UK community, remains available to all students, faculty and staff. The screener is another resource designed to promote the health and safety of the campus.  

The daily screener is a powerful tool to connect you with resources and support if you are affected by a COVID-19. Should you become ill or concerned about a COVID-19 exposure, indicating this on the screener (even if you have been vaccinated) will initiate response from UK Health Corps to help you evaluate your situation and connect with resources to responsibly manage your own health and protect the health of our community.  

As in the past, all members of our community should contact Health Corps at 859-218-SAFE or healthcorps@uky.edu for assistance if they test positive for, or are exposed to, COVID-19.  

Individuals also can download the "UK Wellness Review" app to complete your daily screening and initiate conversations with Health Corps at any time. The app is now available for both Android and iOS devices. 

UK will communicate broadly about the utility of the screener app, by providing QR codes that allow individuals to download it; promoting the screener via social media and digital signage; and referencing it regularly in email communication. The screener is a tool for all members of the campus community: students, faculty and staff. Health Corps is here to support all members of the community: students, faculty and staff.  

If individuals are feeling ill, the screener is the best way to receive immediate support from UK Health Corps.  

Students  

  • Students who have not been vaccinated are expected to complete the daily screener seven days a week. 

  • Students who have been vaccinated are no longer expected to complete the university’s daily screener. They may complete it if they wish, as mechanism to monitor their health and receive support from UK Health Corps.  

  • If vaccinated individuals are still receiving reminders to complete the screener, it is possible that the institution does not have their vaccination documentation on file. Upload that information here, via UK’s self-report tool. 

  • Students in health care colleges are required to complete a screening only when they are in clinical care settings. Health care college students who work in clinical care settings will be required to comply with the policy of the respective office and/or building.

 

Employees (Faculty and Staff) 

  • Employees who have not been vaccinated will continue to receive daily screener reminders seven days a week. Unvaccinated employees are expected to complete this screener, as a mechanism to monitor symptoms and receive support from UK Health Corps.  

  • Employees who have been vaccinated will not receive the daily screener reminder. However, employees can download the wellness review app and should feel free to use the tool as a mechanism to monitor their health and receive support from UK Health Corps.  

  • If vaccinated individuals are still receiving reminders to complete the screener, it is possible that the institution does not have their vaccination documentation on file. Upload that information here, via UK’s self-report tool. 

 

Screening FAQs 

Will students, faculty and staff who are vaccinated need to complete daily screening? 

  • The daily screener is sent to unvaccinated students, faculty and staff every day, seven days a week. Completing the screener is expected of all unvaccinated students, faculty and stuff. Vaccinated individuals do not need to complete the daily screener. However, if vaccinated individuals feel ill or have COVID-19 symptoms, they should report this via the screener app. The daily screener is a mechanism for receiving support if one does feel ill. As we continue to follow health and safety guidelines, we will communicate if any policies change.

 

I am a student. What should I do if I am feeling sick? 

  • The daily health screener is an important tool for monitoring one’s health. Members of the UK community are encouraged to download the screening app and indicate their symptoms on the screener when and if they are feeling ill. This allows someone from UK Health Corps to reach out and provide support. Alternatively, individuals can contact Health Corps or reach out to their health care provider directly. 

  • If you are feeling ill with COVID-19 symptoms, it is recommended that you get a test and self-quarantine while you wait on the results. 

  • Students can work with academic coordinators in UK Health Corps, as well as their faculty members, to make decisions around class attendance and assignments.  

 

I am an employee (faculty or staff). What should I do if I am feeling sick?  

  • The daily health screener is an important tool for monitoring one’s health. Members of the UK community are encouraged to download the screening app and indicate their symptoms on the screener when and if they are feeling ill. This allows someone from UK Health Corps to reach out and provide support. Alternatively, individuals can contact Health Corps or reach out to their health care provider directly. 

  • If you are feeling ill with COVID-19 symptoms, it is recommended that you get a test and self-quarantine while you wait on the results. 

  • Guidance for staff in place since the start of the pandemic remains in effect. If an employee needs to isolate or self-quarantine, they should work with their supervisor to determine if remote work is possible. HR Employee Relations can be reached at 859-257-8758 to help identify remote work or leave options. Any employee who is sick and unable to work, regardless of if it is related to COVID-19, should use sick leave (TDL). 

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Testing 

Required Entry Testing for Unvaccinated Students  

  • Unvaccinated students were required to complete an entry test during the entry testing window: August 11-27. More information on testing can be found here.

  • There were two options for entry testing: 

    1. Students could complete an approved PCR test at no cost through UK 

    2. Students could upload an approved PCR test, administered during the entry testing window, from a non-UK provider via the UK self-report tool. 

 

Required Weekly Ongoing Testing for Unvaccinated Students  

  • These PCR tests will be provided at no cost on UK’s campus.  

  • Non-compliant students will be referred, as in the past, to the Office of Student Conduct

  • If vaccinated students are still contacted about completing a COVID-19 test, it is possible that we do not have their vaccination documentation on file. Upload that information here, via our self-report tool. 

  • Irrespective of vaccination status, any student who tests positive for COVID-19 at a non-UK site is required by the Code of Student Conduct to report that to Health Corps via the self-report tool. Students who do not report a positive COVID-19 test result to Health Corps will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct.

  • As in previous semesters, UK will continue testing specific student subpopulations when data indicate a higher prevalence of the virus. This may include both vaccinated and unvaccinated students.  

  • If you have misplaced or have not yet received your official documentation, contact Health Corps (859-218-SAFE or healthcorps@uky.edu). 

 

Testing Available at No Cost for All Students: Vaccinated and Unvaccinated 

  • PCR tests are available at no cost to all students.  More information on testing can be found here.

  • Asymptomatic students can utilize on-campus testing locations, if they wish, above and beyond ongoing testing requirements for unvaccinated students.  

  • Vaccinated students may utilize COVID-19 testing on campus if they wish, at no cost. Which location they should visit on campus varies, depending on whether an individual is experiencing symptoms:  

  • Asymptomatic students, irrespective of vaccination status, may utilize the on-campus testing locations at Add locations here.  

  • If students develop symptoms, irrespective of vaccination status, they should schedule a test at University Health Service. They should wear a mask to their testing appointment.  

  • Irrespective of vaccination status, any student who tests positive for COVID-19 at a non-UK site is required by the Code of Student Conduct to report that to Health Corps via the self-report tool. Students who do not report a positive COVID-19 test result to Health Corps will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct.

  • If you have misplaced or have not yet received your official documentation, contact Health Corps (859-218-SAFE or healthcorps@uky.edu). 

 

Required Weekly Ongoing Testing for Unvaccinated Employees

  • COVID-19 testing for everyone (faculty, staff and students) on our campus who is unvaccinated is mandatory.
  • Testing is required on a weekly basis.
  • If and when someone is fully vaccinated, they will no longer be required to test. 
  • Click here to find information on employee testing locations and hours of operation.
  • Employees can also upload PCR test results from testing providers outside of UK at this link to complete their testing requirements.
  • Employees can be tested during work hours. Workers who are paid hourly will not have to take leave time to test.
  • Anyone can continue to test as well at the community site on College Way near Kentucky Proud Park.
  • There are penalties in place for non-compliance. Those measures must be equitable, regardless of whether someone is a faculty, student or staff member. As such, we will institute disciplinary actions for non-compliance. More information about noncompliance policies is available here

 

Testing Available at No Cost for All UK Employees (Faculty and Staff): Vaccinated and Unvaccinated  

  • If employees are experiencing symptoms, they should avoid public spaces and contact their health care provider. They can also contact Employee Health.    

  • The CDC recommends that vaccinated individuals, if directly exposed to a COVID-positive contact, test 3-5 days after exposure. UK Health Corps is here to support the community, provide guidance and explain current CDC recommendations. If individuals have questions, they should contact UK Health Corps at healthcorps@uky.edu or 859-218-SAFE. 

  • Per CDC guidance, unvaccinated individuals, if directly exposed to a COVID-positive contact, should either quarantine for seven days with a negative test between days 5-7, or quarantine for a full ten days. If individuals have questions or concerns, UK Health Corps is here to support the community, provide guidance and explain current CDC recommendations. Contact UK Health Corps at healthcorps@uky.edu or 859-218-SAFE. 

  • If you have misplaced or have not yet received your official documentation, contact Health Corps (859-218-SAFE or healthcorps@uky.edu). 

  • Direct exposure to COVID-19 means that you have been a “close contact” of someone who tested positive. The CDC defines “close contact” as someone who has been within 6 feet of a COVID-19 positive individual for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. 

 

Testing FAQs 

Why are unvaccinated individuals required to test while vaccinated individuals aren't?

  • Per the CDC, the greatest risk of transmission is among unvaccinated people who are much more likely to get infected, and therefore transmit the virus. Fully vaccinated people get COVID-19 (known as breakthrough infections) less often than unvaccinated people. 

  • Fully vaccinated people with Delta variant breakthrough infections can spread the virus to others. However, vaccinated people appear to spread the virus for a shorter time: For prior variants, lower amounts of viral genetic material were found in samples taken from fully vaccinated people who had breakthrough infections than from unvaccinated people with COVID-19. For people infected with the Delta variant, similar amounts of viral genetic material have been found among both unvaccinated and fully vaccinated people. However, like prior variants, the amount of viral genetic material may go down faster in fully vaccinated people when compared to unvaccinated people. This means fully vaccinated people will likely spread the virus for less time than unvaccinated people.

 

Why are symptomatic students instructed to go to University Health Service rather than the other testing locations? 

  • The non-University Health Service (UHS, the student health clinic) testing locations are designed to serve an asymptomatic population. Individuals administering COVID-19 tests are equipped with personal protective equipment that reflects the risk level of the population completing the test. Additionally, by testing at UHS, symptomatic students can receive additional clinical evaluation and guidance related to their symptoms. 

 

Is there a drive-thru testing option? 

  • Click here to view testing locations and hours, including drive-thru options.

 

How much do tests cost?  

  • Tests are provided on UK’s campus at no cost to students, faculty and staff.  

 

I don’t want to be tested anymore. What can I do?  

  • Get vaccinated. Vaccines are our best defense against the virus. Fully vaccinated students are not required to complete ongoing testing. Schedule your appointment here.  

 

Where can I go if I have additional questions about testing policies?  

 

As an employee, can I receive a COVID-19 test outside of UK to fulfill my testing requirements?

  • Yes. You may receive a test outside of UK as long as it's a PCR test and the results are uploaded at this link.

 

What should I do if I have a medical exemption for the testing requirement? 

  • If you believe you have a valid medical exemption from the testing requirement, please communicate with the UK Disability Resource Center. You can reach them at 859-257-2754 or drc@uky.edu

 

Why are employee testing numbers not shared on the dashboard?

  • Our employees come from all over the state and are testing in different places. When they’re tested, their results are reported to their local health department. As such, UK does not have testing data for all employees.  

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Noncompliance Policies

Faculty and staff compliance measures for those in the non-UK HealthCare testing protocol are below. Regular faculty and staff who are not compliant with the testing protocols will start being placed on unpaid administrative leave on November 1. Should an employee remain non-compliant with the testing policy and remain on unpaid administrative leave for a prolonged period, additional disciplinary sanctions will be considered. The university is working with elected faculty and staff to determine how and when to consider further sanctions. Once determined through a collaborative process, further clarification will be communicated.

Regular (full- and part-time) faculty and staff:

  • After one testing period of noncompliance, a letter will be sent to the employee, and that employee’s supervisor will be copied.
  • After two testing periods of noncompliance, a letter will be placed in the employee’s permanent personnel record, and the supervisor will be copied.
  • After three testing periods of noncompliance, employees will become ineligible for the 2 percent merit raise (due to take effect in January 2022) until they become fully vaccinated or until they test consecutively over a four-week period.
  • After four testing periods of noncompliance (or beyond), employees will be placed on unpaid administrative leave until fully vaccinated or until they test consecutively over a four-week period.
  • For STEPS employees (part-time student employees and staff), similar disciplinary letters will be sent for the first two testing periods of non-compliance. After three testing periods of noncompliance, a STEPS employee can be subject to termination.
  • The university defines fully vaccinated as two shots of either Pfizer or Moderna vaccines plus 14 days or one shot of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine plus 14 days.

Students:

  • After the first testing period of noncompliance, a hold is placed on the student’s account, which prohibits access to things such as registering for classes.
  • After the second testing period, a student is denied future access to athletic events and/or prohibited from social activities.
  • After the third testing period of non-compliance, a conduct meeting will be held with the student, which will involve disciplinary holds, including a potential sanction of probation.
  • After the fourth testing period non-compliance, another conduct meeting is held. The potential sanction is an interim suspension.

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Contact Tracing  

All Individuals: Vaccinated or Unvaccinated  

  • When UK Health Corps becomes aware of a positive case, they will begin contact tracing. This means both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who had "close contact" with the COVID-positive individual will be notified and offered support and resources. 

  • The CDC defines close contact exposure as being within 6 feet of a positive case for 15 minutes or more.  

 

Vaccinated Individuals  

  • Vaccinated individuals will not be required to quarantine or participate in contact tracing, unless they test positive for COVID-19 or develop symptoms.  

  • The CDC recommends that vaccinated individuals, if directly exposed to a COVID-positive contact, test 3-5 days after exposure.  

  • If a vaccinated individual tests positive for COVID-19, they will be subject to standard contact tracing and isolation protocols. These policies are in place to protect the health and safety of the individual who is infected, as well as the larger community.  

  • If a student needs to isolate or self-quarantine, they should contact Health Corps for additional guidance and wellness support.  

  • If an employee needs to isolate or self-quarantine, they should work with their supervisor to determine if remote work is possible. HR Employee Relations can be reached at 859-257-8758 to help identify remote work or leave options. Any employee who is sick and unable to work, regardless of if it is related to COVID-19, should use sick leave (TDL). 

 

Unvaccinated Individuals 

  • All contact tracing protocols will remain in place for individuals who are not vaccinated.  

  • If an unvaccinated individual is identified through contact tracing to be a CDC-defined close contact exposure (within 6 feet of a positive case for 15 minutes or more), they will be required to quarantine irrespective of whether they show symptoms. These policies align with current CDC and local health department guidance and are in place to protect the health and safety of the individual who is infected, as well as the larger community.  

  • If an employee needs to isolate or self-quarantine, they should work with their supervisor to think creatively and determine if remote work is possible. HR Employee Relations can be reached at 859-257-8758 to help identify remote work or leave options. Any employee who is sick and unable to work, regardless of if it is related to COVID-19, should use sick leave (TDL). 

 

Contact Tracing FAQs 

What resources and support are available to me if I am instructed to quarantine or isolate?  

  • The UK Health Corps team has wellness connectors on staff to assist students, faculty and staff with these needs, including technology and academic support. Contact UK Health Corps at healthcorps@uky.edu or 859-218-SAFE.  

  • Additionally, the daily screener, a tool utilized by Health Corps to support the UK community, remains available to all students, faculty and staff. The screener is another resource designed to promote the health and safety of the campus.  

  • The daily screener is a powerful tool to connect you with resources and support if you are affected by a COVID-19. Should you become ill or concerned about a COVID-19 exposure, indicating this on the screener will initiate response from UK Health Corps to help you evaluate your situation and connect with resources to responsibly manage your own health and protect the health of our community. 

 

Which policymakers and other experts are we working with to establish health and safety policies? 

  • The University of Kentucky is committed to following the latest COVID-19 guidelines from the CDC. In addition to staying up to date with CDC guidelines, UK Health Corps is in regular contact with state and local public health officials to review and interpret those guidelines and apply them to our unique setting.  

  • An interdisciplinary group of UK HealthCare physicians and clinical and research leaders at the University of Kentucky — the START (Screening, Testing and Tracing, to Accelerate Restart and Transition) Team — meets on a regular, ongoing basis to provide constant evaluation of our campus COVID-19 policies and procedures and to assist with the implementation of evolving CDC, state, and local guidelines on our campus. Learn more about the start team here.  

 

What do I do if I am fully vaccinated, but I develop symptoms after being exposed to COVID-19?  

  • You should get tested for COVID-19 between 3-5 days after exposure and self-quarantine while you wait on the results. You can contact UK Health Corps for support at 859-218-SAFE or healthcorps@uky.edu. You also may indicate that you are experiencing symptoms via the wellness review app. If you do, a member of UK Heath Corps will contact you to answer any questions and provide support. 

 

What is the difference between quarantine and self-quarantine? 

  • Quarantine refers to a defined period of movement restriction associated with a public health order from a local public health authority or UK Health Corps, typically as a result of an individual’s exposure to someone else who has tested positive for COVID-19. Self-quarantine is a step someone might take at their own discretion and in the interest of their own health and the health of others as a result of a situation related to COVID-19.  

 

As an employee, what are my options if a child or someone I am caring for is exposed to COVID-19 and is required to stay home?  

  • Per the CDC, an exposure is defined only as someone who has had direct contact with a positive case and is not vaccinated. Campus employees (non-healthcare employees) who have been ordered by UK Health Corps or a public health department to quarantine, who feel well enough to work, should consult with their supervisor. If the supervisor agrees there is viable work for the employee to do remotely and agrees to allow the employee to work remotely then the employee can do so without having to utilize sick or vacation time. Supervisors who would like assistance should call Human Resources. More information on sick leave (TDL) is available on the HR website. 

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Facilities

Given UK’s successful vaccination efforts – and our ongoing efforts to communicate about vaccines – offices and classrooms have returned to normal configurations, in accordance with CDC guidelines. 

Masks are required inside all campus buildings, with few exceptions, as detailed below. 

UK officials – including the START team and in accordance with federal and state guidelines – will continue to monitor this issue. As always, our top priority will be the health and safety of our campus community. To that end, hand sanitizer will be placed at all building entrances, and the UK Facilities Management team will focus on public areas and restrooms. 

The filters we use are applicable to the building up to (and including) MERV 13 filters. All filter change frequencies have increased and are routinely monitored.

 

Classrooms  

  • Classrooms are considered common areas. As such, masks are required for all people, irrespective of vaccination status. Faculty who are vaccinated may remove their masks if they are standing behind plexiglass. However, if they move away from the plexiglass, they should wear a mask.   

  • Faculty members are encouraged to remind students of these requirements on the first day of class. 

  • The UK community has a proven track record of complying with policies designed to keep each other safe and respectfully encouraging compliance among friends, peers and colleagues. Below are some tips to help navigate conversations about mask-wearing.  

  • First, assume the best in your colleague, employee or student. They may have forgotten to put it on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus:  

    • Don’t forget your mask.

    • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements.

    • Please wear a mask when you come to into the classroom.  

  • At the same time, mechanisms are in place to address noncompliance.  

  • Noncompliant students will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct.  

  • If an employee refuses to wear a mask after they have been asked to do so, refer them to their supervisor. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. 

  • Classrooms will be cleaned once daily. Misters will be used, and masks and hand sanitizer will be placed in classrooms. Wipes will also be placed in classrooms as needed. 

 

On-Campus Office Spaces 

  • In partnership with department and unit managers, staff began transitioning to on-site work July 1, with a few exceptions for areas with work needs that required staff to return sooner. The expectation is that all staff fully transitioned to their FY22 schedule (fully on-site, fully remote or hybrid) by the week of August 2. We continue to follow CDC health and safety guidelines, as well as recommendations from UK’s START team. On-campus employees are critical to our process in returning to a more vibrant and residential campus.  

  • Office areas will have buckets with cleaning supplies for general use. 

  • All individuals, regardless of vaccination status, must wear masks in indoor spaces on campus where people gather — including shared office spaces, cubicles, and other common working spaces. Masks are not required if an individual is alone in a private office space.  
     

Dining Halls  

  • Dining halls and other related facilities will return to normal capacity. 

  • COVID-19 safety protocols and support – such as plexiglass, hand sanitizing stations and healthy behaviors signage – will remain in place. 

  • All individuals should wear a mask while in indoor dining spaces when they are not actively eating or drinking.  

  • Dining hall spaces are cleaned regularly throughout the day to ensure the health and safety of the campus.  

  • Green-to-Go containers are available for a one-time fee of $5. Read more. 

 

Facilities FAQs 

Are there any anticipated guidelines that may impact the indoor dining experience (e.g., plexiglass at all locations; reduced seating per table, etc.)? 

  • Plexiglass will still be placed throughout the dining areas. At this time, there is no reduced seating capacity. Individuals are encouraged to consider make decisions considering their own health and circumstances in these spaces. Dining spaces are cleaned regularly throughout each day. 

 

What are the cleaning protocols for campus buildings?   

  • Our facilities management team has, and will continue to, work around the clock to keep our spaces clean and safe. We encourage you to take precautions in your own spaces, including regular hand washing and sanitizing of high touch areas in your private workspace.  

 

What will signage look like in facilities? 

  • Signage will reflect current policies which currently require masking in all common areas of indoor spaces regardless of vaccination status.  

 

Are personal protective equipment supplies in common spaces, including classrooms and offices, being replenished? 

  • All personal protective equipment, including hand sanitizer and plexiglass dividers, are being monitored and replenished as necessary. If you have requests for personal protective equipment in specific spaces, contact Mary Vosevich at mary.vosevich@uky.edu.

 

What is the process and timeline for ordering additional personal protective equipment if needed? 

  • The UK Supply Center currently has a significant supply of the following items available for departmental ordering:

    • Lysol-brand disinfectant spray 

    • Anti-bacterial, sanitizing wipes 

    • Ear loop face masks and other masks 

    • Nitrile gloves 

    • Hand sanitizer 

  • Departments can order needed items through the UK Supply Center online catalog available via their website. Questions can be directed to the Supply Center through the Contact information page on their website. Departments should consider utilizing the Supply Center for these items prior to sourcing these type items from a UK contracted vendor by entering a shopping cart/requisition. External suppliers should only be used when filling out and exception request and sending it to UKPurchasing@uky.edu, before the purchase is made.  

 

Will the university be providing masks? 

  • Yes. As in the past, the institution will provide masks and other personal protective equipment. Masks will be available at different locations across campus, including libraries, dining facilities, classrooms, etc. Students moving into residence halls also will be provided wellness kits, including two masks. 

 

Can I request signage to use in a campus facility?

 

Does a faculty member or instructor teaching behind plexiglass still need to wear a mask?  

  • If faculty members who are fully vaccinated are teaching behind plexiglass, they do not need to wear a mask or face covering. However, if the faculty member moves away from the plexiglass, they should wear a mask.   

 

Can I request that someone wear a mask, and what do I do if they are unwilling or unable?  

  • At this time, masks are required in all common spaces of indoor facilities regardless of vaccination status. Below are some tips for navigating conversations related to mask-wearing.  

    • First, assume the best in your colleague, employee or student. They may have forgotten to put it on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus:  

      • Don’t forget your mask.  

      • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements.  

      • Please wear a mask when you come to my office/cubicle. 

  • If a colleague, employee or student refuses to wear a mask after they are asked, you can report this behavior via the following platforms: 

  • If an employee refuses to wear a mask after they have been asked to do so, refer them to their supervisor. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. 

  • The Office of Student Conduct can be contacted here

  • Students can also contact the Academic Ombud for further guidance. 

 

Is the Visitor Center conducting campus visits, and what are the rules associated with those services? 

  • Individuals visiting campus will be required to follow campus mask policies, which include wearing face coverings in all indoor common areas. Individuals who are not vaccinated also should wear a mask outside if they are near other people. For more details including in-person, virtual and group visits, go to visit.uky.edu

 

If I’m a student meeting with a faculty or staff member and he/she refuses to wear a mask, what do I do? 

  • At this time, masks are required in all common spaces of indoor facilities regardless of vaccination status.  

  • Community members should approach these conversations with respect. First, assume the best in the person. They may have forgotten to put it on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support from community members is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus:  

    • Don’t forget your mask!  

    • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements.  

    • It’s my understanding that masks are required in office/cubicle spaces. 

  • If an employee (faculty or staff member) refuses to wear a mask in common areas or gathering spaces, refer them to their supervisor. In the case of faculty, the individual's supervisor will most often be a department chair or college dean. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. 

 

I am meeting with students in my small office, and I do not know if they are vaccinated. May I ask them to wear a mask when they are in my office? What if I do and they refuse?  

  • At this time, masks are required in all common spaces of indoor facilities regardless of vaccination status. Individuals may instruct others to wear masks in their offices. If the student refuses, you may tell the student that he or she must wear a mask before the meeting can take place. 

  • Employees should approach these conversations with respect. First, assume the best in the student. They may have forgotten to put it on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support from colleagues is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus: 

    • Don’t forget your mask!  

    • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements. 

    • Please wear a mask when you come to my office/cubicle. 

  • If a student refuses to wear a mask in common areas or gathering spaces, we encourage you to reach out to the Office of Student Conduct. If a colleague refuses to wear a mask after asking them to do so, refer them to their supervisor. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. 

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Housing, Residence Life, and Move-In

Move-In 

  • The majority of UK students will move into residence halls during Big Blue Move-in. This will take place primarily between August 16-18.  

  • UK will return to the move-in protocols utilized prior to COVID-19, with one exception: all individuals will be asked to wear masks when they are navigating indoor common spaces such as hallways, lobbies and elevators.  

 

Housing and Residence Life  

  • The university will return to its traditional policies for visitation in residence halls, similar to 2019. Learn more about those policies here.  

  • Individuals will be required to wear masks in common areas and gathering spaces within residence halls. Masks are not required inside of residence hall rooms.  

  • Isolation facilities will continue to be utilized as needed for students who test positive for COVID-19. Students also have the option of returning to their permanent residences during their isolation or quarantine periods.  

  • UK Health Corps will support students who test positive and who move into temporary isolation facilities.  

  • In general, isolation orders last for ten days from an individual’s index date. Index dates are determined on a case-by-case basis and are typically either the date of symptom onset or the date of the positive COVID-19 test result. The exact length of time is at the discretion of the local health department. 

  • Quarantine orders typically last 7, 10 or 14 days, based on the current CDC guidelines. If you remain symptom-free throughout your quarantine and receive negative results from a PCR test on or after day 5, your quarantine can end after 7 days. If you remain symptom-free but do not test, then your quarantine can end after 10 days. All others should complete a 14-day quarantine. 

  • Wording to the student housing contract strongly encourages COVID-19 vaccinations. 

 

Housing, Residence Life and Move-in FAQs 

Residence halls are returning to traditional occupancy levels. What happens if a roommate is required to quarantine? Is the other roommate expected to stay there? 

  • Per the CDC, high-contact exposures are defined as individuals who have direct contact with positive cases. Therefore, a roommate who was not exposed to a positive case is not required to quarantine even if their roommate is in quarantine. We recommend taking enhanced precautions in shared common spaces during the quarantine period. 

 

What happens if you’re living in an on-campus room with someone, and you’re vaccinated, and they’re not. Do you always have to wear a mask? 

  • As of Monday, August 9, the university instituted an indoor masking policy for both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals in common spaces. All individuals, irrespective of vaccine status, are required to wear masks when they are in indoor common spaces.  

  • At the beginning of this semester, roommates, as in past semesters, will complete and sign roommate agreement forms. Students may, if they wish, include language about masking in common areas in this form.  

 

Can I ask other students to wear a mask if they come into my room or if we are gathering in a common area? 

  • Students can make their own personal decisions regarding their private living spaces. If you wish to ask other people to wear a mask before entering your room, you may do so. And you can remind others that masks are required, per university policy, in common areas. Here are some tips related to having conversations about masks:  

  • First, assume the best of your peers. They may have forgotten to put their mask on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus:  

    • Don’t forget your mask.  

    • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements.  

    • Please wear a mask when you come to my room. 

 

Does the university have any specific guidance masking guidance related to move-in? 

  • Individuals are required wear masks in all common areas of indoor spaces during move-in regardless of vaccination status. This includes lobbies, elevators, hallways, etc. Individuals can feel free to remove their masks while in individual rooms. 

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Academic Course Delivery  

With our efforts to be back in person, we return to the guidelines set out in our routine academic policies, as communicated to the faculty by the Senate Chair [August 2, 2021] https://www.uky.edu/universitysenate/acadpolicy#Excused  

As always, faculty retain the right to set attendance policies for their classes. University approved “excused absences” policies will be honored. Health Corps will be providing verifiable documentation of a student’s quarantine/isolation status. These absences are considered excused under university policy.  

Specifically, university-approved “excused absences” means that faculty may not penalize a student for missing class and must accept assignments late that are a result of those excused absences. Faculty may assign make-up work in a manner that best fits the nature of the course as they have designed it. 

Students seeking disability-related accommodations, including those involving absences, should contact the Disability Resource Center. If any alterations are deemed appropriate accommodations, the DRC Consultant will work collaboratively with the student and the faculty member to determine the possibility or ability to provide the accommodation.  Any accommodations noted on the student’s letter of accommodations must be provided. 

Among other tools, the syllabus presents an opportunity to manage student expectations around attendance and participation in our courses. Including clear statements regarding how the course will be conducted and what will be expected of students can go a long way towards establishing a common understanding. 

Each instructor shall determine his/her policy regarding completion of assigned work, attendance in class, absences at announced or unannounced examinations, and excused absences in excess of one-fifth of class contact hours (see SR 5.2.5.2). This policy shall be presented in writing to each class at its first or second meeting. Students' failure to comply with the announced policy may result in appropriate reductions in grade as determined by the Instructor of Record.  

 

Academic Course Delivery FAQs 

Will the majority of classes be in person again for fall 2021?  

  • The Office of the Provost has determined that the percentage of face-to-face/in-person instruction this semester should be similar to the percentage of face-to-face/in-person instruction of these same courses in the spring and fall 2019 semesters. There also should be a similar number of students enrolled for an in-person “seat.” Changing the modality of a course that already has students enrolled will not be permitted, except in rare, exceptional cases. Faculty will work with their deans to determine any exceptions and must, ultimately, receive approval from the Office of the Provost for any change in modality. The University Senate Council Chair has approved a temporary delegation of distance learning approvals to the local educational unit for fall 2021 to permit such changes when the Office of the Provost allows them.

 

What is the guidance/policy for faculty if they’re exposed/sick (canceling class, moving class online, etc.)? 

  • Working in consultation with their department chair and/or dean, if a faculty member is required to quarantine or isolate but feels well enough to teach remotely, they are encouraged to do so only while under a quarantine or isolation order from the Health Department or UK Health Corps. As always, you should consult with your primary care health provider regarding your health status. 

  • In general, isolation orders last for ten days from an individual’s index date. Index dates are determined on a case-by-case basis and are typically either the date of symptom onset or the date of the positive COVID-19 test result. The exact length of time is at the discretion of the local health department. 

  • Quarantine orders typically last 7, 10 or 14 days, based on the current CDC guidelines. If you remain symptom-free throughout your quarantine and receive negative results from a PCR test on or after day 5, your quarantine can end after 7 days. If you remain symptom-free but do not test, then your quarantine can end after 10 days. All others should complete a 14-day quarantine. 

 

What safety measures are in place in classrooms?   

  • All classrooms are still equipped with plexiglass, sanitizer and other personal protective equipment. If a faculty member who is fully vaccinated is teaching behind plexiglass, they do not need to wear a mask or face covering. However, if the faculty member moves away from the plexiglass, they should wear a mask. As always, we encourage all members of the UK community to make responsible decisions related to their own health and the health of our community. 

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Events, Activities and Athletics

UK plans to return Athletics events to full capacity in fall 2021. As a part of the university campus, indoor spaces within athletics facilities will be subject to the same indoor masking policies as the rest of the campus; however, participants in athletics contests will be subject to the relevant COVID-19 policies of the Southeastern Conference or other relevant governing body.  

The institution strongly encourages moving events, where and when possible, to outdoor locations. Event planners can work with the events management team for alternate locations. 

The institution will provide parameters for on- or off-campus events that are indoors. These will allow for greater capacity and attendance than in fall 2020. 

Registered Student Organization and Sponsored Student Organizations (RSOs and SSOs) events will continue to track attendance for contact tracing purposes. Both vaccinated and unvaccinated student attendees will provide their names for the purpose of taking attendance. This will allow UK Health Corps to engage in contact tracing in the event of a positive test result among event attendees.  

All event planners, from across the UK campus, should, as they have in the past, coordinate with the Office of University Events to ensure their event protocols align with university policies.  

The Office of University Events will publish policies designed to protect the health and safety of the UK community. More information is available here.  

Visit the University Events website

Visit the UK Athletics website

 

Events, Activities and Athletics FAQs 

Is UKPD going to do joint patrols again? 

  • Yes. Last fall, University of Kentucky and Lexington Police began a partnership designed to help fight the spread of COVID-19. The partnership, involving both police agencies and the Lexington-Fayette County Health Department, stepped up efforts to monitor and respond to pandemic-related, off-campus Student Code of Conduct violations. This partnership will continue into fall 2021.  

 

Will the university provide any additional guidelines for hosting large in-person events on campus? 

  • We will continue to follow the data and updated policies as additional guidance is available from the CDC and local public health officials. Our Office of University Events will continue to work with event organizers to make sure health and safety considerations for COVID-19 restrictions are taken into account when planning. As we know more, we will communicate broadly with campus. 

 

In addition to off-campus student organization event registration process, will there be any potential for travel restrictions or limitations for student orgs (e.g., formal)?  

  • The university continues to monitor the situation and will communicate with registered student organizations regarding their requests for travel and events. The institution strongly encourages moving events, where and when possible, to outdoor locations. Event planners can work with the events management team for alternate locations. 

 

If we have an event planned in an indoor space, can we still plan on holding it there? Should we consider moving it outside?  

  • We plan for indoor public spaces to remain available for reservation of use with stipulation such as no bake sales/distribution of food. Attendees will be expected to follow university policies with respect to masks—meaning all attendees, irrespective of vaccination status, should wear a mask in indoor common areas or gathering spaces. Event planners are encouraged to consider relocating to outdoor spaces, which are considered safer for large gatherings.  

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Travel

The university will follow CDC guidelines, which continue to be updated, with respect to international travel.  

Fully vaccinated employees may conduct UK-endorsed international travel to any country that the CDC has designated a risk level 3 or lower for COVID-19. UK-endorsed travel to countries at a risk level 4, and any international travel by unvaccinated employees, must be reviewed and approved. Contact UK’s office of International Health, Safety & Security at ihss@uky.edu or 859-218-4961 for more information on the review and approval process. 

All UK-endorsed employee international travel must be registered in UK’s international travel registry

Education Abroad programs and other international travel by students continue to be reviewed and approved on a case-by-case basis in alignment with UK Administrative Regulation 4:9. More information about Education Abroad programs is available here

Non-US citizens or lawful permanent residents traveling internationally may have significant trouble returning to the US, depending on their destination, visa type and current travel restrictions. These travelers are strongly encouraged to consult with UK’s office of International Student & Scholar Services before traveling abroad for any purpose. 

International visitors to campus are permitted. Departments hosting visitors should contact UK Health Corps at healthcorps@uky.edu or 859-218-SAFE for up-to-date guidance about COVID testing and onboarding for these visitors. 

UK has removed the previous language and guidance, which discouraged domestic travel. The current travel policy encourages community members to be fully vaccinated before traveling. 

UK HealthCare Employees

Under Tier 4 operations at UK HealthCare, all UK-endorsed state, domestic and international travel for all staff and faculty is currently suspended. The decision was made under an abundance of caution and for the safety of our staff and teams as COVID-19 delta variant cases continue to rise in Kentucky and the U.S. Those who travel to outreach clinics, as well as the physician liaisons, may continue to travel as their jobs dictate as long as they follow current health and safety protocols.

 

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Transportation

UK has lifted all capacity restrictions on university vehicles. 

Individuals should still wear masks while inside university vehicles, regardless of vaccination status.  

Per the CDC and state guidelines, masking is required on all public transportation, regardless of vaccination status.  

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Remote Work

Can I change my hybrid remote work agreement? Can I go back to working from home? 

  • President Capilouto announced in an email to campus in May that, in partnership with department and unit managers, staff should begin transitioning to on-site work July 1, with a few exceptions for areas with work needs that require staff to return sooner. The expectation is that all staff will fully transition to their FY22 schedule (fully on-site, fully remote or hybrid) by the week of August 2. You can learn more about our plans for returning to on-site operations and access resources here. 

 

What are my options if I am immunocompromised, or if I live with someone who is immunocompromised? 

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Resources for Supervisors/Hiring Officials

What do I do if my employee refuses to wear a mask in a common area or gathering space?  

  • Refusal to wear a mask in a common area or gathering space constitutes a violation of university policies. Supervisors may call Employee Relations at 859-257-8758 or use this form to report an incident. 

 

Can we ask applicants/interviewees if they’ve been vaccinated?  

  • No. The UKHC vaccination requirement should be clearly communicated to all potential new hires during the hiring process, but they are not required to reveal their vaccination status during an interview. Once an individual become an employee of UKHC, vaccination status should be addressed through the same process established for all employees.   

 

What should I do if an employee on my team or his/her family member is at high-risk, such as being immunocompromised? 

 

Am I responsible for managing/monitoring my employee's compliance with the UK HealthCare vaccine mandate?  

  • All policies and procedures related to vaccination status are monitored through Health Corps to protect individuals’ right to privacy regarding their vaccination status.  Supervisors, with the help and direction of UK Human Resources, are responsible for follow up related to noncompliance with campus policy.  

 

Am I responsible for managing/monitoring my employee's compliance with the indoor masking policy? 

  • Supervisors are expected to communicate with employees about the indoor masking policy, as they would communicate any other university policy. Supervisors should reinforce that compliance is expected for all individuals—faculty, staff and students.  

  • We trust our community to comply with these measures, which are in place to protect everyone’s health and safety. This community has, since the beginning of the pandemic, banded together to keep each other safe. At the same time, mechanisms are in place to address noncompliance. Supervisors should communicate that as well.  

  • Noncompliant students will be referred to the Office of Student Conduct. 

  • Use this form to share concerns about employee failure to follow campus masking protocols. 

 

Can I receive a list of my employees who are vaccinated?  

  • No. All policies and procedures related to vaccination status are monitored through Health Corps to protect individuals’ right to privacy regarding their vaccination status.  

 

My vaccinated employees are harassing unvaccinated employees. What should I do?  

  • Any harassment is unacceptable. It’s a behavior issue that you must address, as a supervisor, with Employee Relations, as with any other situation.  

 

Can we move forward with meetings virtually, rather than in person? Should we be moving everything online?  

  • Supervisors should exercise their best judgment when making plans for meetings or large gatherings. If staff meetings take place indoors, all individuals should wear a mask while gathered, in alignment with university policies. Platforms for remote meetings, such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams, represent additional options for supervisors to utilize if they choose.  

 

Where do I send an employee who wants to be vaccinated? Where can those outside Fayette County go?  

  • Instructions for how to schedule a vaccine appointment, as well as information related to locations, hours of operation, etc., is available here.  

 

What should I do if an employee is requesting an exemption?  

  • UK HealthCare employees received additional information about exemptions during the week of August 16.  

 

What should members of my team do if their colleagues are not complying with the university’s mask policy for indoor spaces?  

  • Supervisors should encourage their teams to begin by having respectful conversations about mask wearing.  Below are some tips for navigating conversations related to mask-wearing.  

  • First, assume the best in your colleague, employee or student. They may have forgotten to put it on, or they may not have realized they would be around others. Kind support is one of the best ways to help establish new habits. Here are some ideas on what you can say to support healthy behaviors on campus:  

    • Don’t forget your mask. 

    • Let’s make sure we follow the mask requirements.  

    • Please wear a mask when you come to my office/cubicle. 

  • If an employee refuses to wear a mask after they have been asked to do so, refer them to their supervisor. If the employee is a direct report, contact Employee Relations at 859-257-8758. 

 

Are employees required to practice physical distancing?  

  • Physical distancing is not a recommendation of the CDC for higher education facilities with successful vaccination programs. 

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