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Clarification: VCU Libraries requires masks indoors, aligning with the university's public health measure. Individuals may remove their mask while eating or drinking. If a patron is alone in a study room, the individual may unmask. RMC Security makes regular rounds throughout the facilities and will address individuals not in compliance with a friendly reminder. If someone is repeatedly not in compliance, RMC Security will call VCU Libraries management to address the issue. This is also done if a report or complaint is made about a user who has repeatedly been observed not complying with the masking requirement. The goal is to encourage and educate patrons regarding the importance and safety of masking.
Clarification: Masks are also required at outdoor events with more than 50 people or where physical distancing of 6 or more feet is not possible.
Clarification: Students are required to report their vaccination status or request a medical or religious exemption. Students who have not yet responded will continue to have a hold placed on their registration, which 1) limits their ability to make changes to their schedule, 2) prevents registration for spring 2022 classes and 3) requires them to report for weekly surveillance testing. Students who do not report for testing will face disciplinary action up to and including administrative withdrawal from classes for the fall semester. Students will receive a warning if they miss one test; if they miss two they will be administratively withdrawn.
Clarification: Contact tracing at VCU occurs five days a week, Monday through Friday.
Clarification: Student Health Services and Employee Health refer those who report symptoms for testing. VCU tests students and employees who are not vaccinated as part of asymptomatic testing, but all VCU students must also follow all the safety protocols they attested to prior to returning to campus — preventative measures, daily health monitoring, and reporting of symptoms, tests or exposure.
Clarification: Exposure to COVID-19, means you had close contact with someone with COVID-19. Close contact includes:
- Living with a person who has COVID-19
- Providing care for a person who has COVID-19
- Being within 6 feet of a person with COVID-19 for a cumulative 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period of time, or
- Having exposure to respiratory secretions from a person with COVID-19 (e.g., being coughed or sneezed on, sharing a drinking glass or utensils, kissing)
A person with COVID-19 is considered to be contagious starting from 2 days before they started experiencing symptoms (or 2 days before they tested positive if they never had symptoms) until they meet the criteria to discontinue isolation. For more information on exposure, visit vdh.virginia.gov/coronavirus/local-exposure.
Clarification: All students and employees, no matter their vaccination status, are required to report to 804-MY-COVID if they test positive for COVID-19. In addition, they are required to quarantine or isolate. Review the information about quarantine and isolation protocols at VCU: https://together.vcu.edu/
Clarification: At this time, our public health experts do not recommend widespread testing of asymptomatic individuals (individuals who are not experiencing symptoms) for the purpose of establishing that a particular population is free of COVID-19, considering the limited usefulness of a single administration of testing (single administration could miss cases in the early stages of infection or subsequent exposures resulting in transmission, and would only provide COVID-19 status for individuals at that specific point in time). However, to help mitigate COVID-19 positive individuals returning to campus housing and to gauge the prevalence of COVID-19 among asymptomatic individuals, VCU made the decision to test all residential students prior to their return to campus and then continue to test a sample of asymptomatic students and employees each week once classes began.
Clarification: VCU follows state and federal guidelines and updates the One VCU: Responsible Together plan as guidance and protocols change. Though VCU follows CDC guidelines, our protocols may differ at times. VCU mainly operates under guidance from the Virginia Department of Health (VDH) and we adjust our strategies and protocols based on the guidance and direction of VDH. Changes and reminders are communicated at least weekly from firstname.lastname@example.org.
Clarification: VCU Student Health Services and Employee Health refer individuals with symptoms for testing conducted by VCU Health; however, students and employees have the right to be tested where they choose. Students and employees who, on their own accord, test at a primary care physician or other non-VCU affiliated testing facility, must self-report their test results to Student Health Services or Employee Health. VCU does not refer individuals to outside facilities and informs students that, if they choose to test outside of VCU, they must report test results. Student Health Services conducts extensive case management with those who report symptoms and test positive, as well as works with contact tracers to contact those who may have been exposed, and actively follows up with students who are referred for testing but have not yet reported results.
Clarification: A positive student COVID test can be reported and documented in these ways:
- The results would be communicated to University Student Health Services via the lab if the test was taken through VCU. Student Health would contact the student to get initial information regarding close contacts.
- The results would be automatically entered into the Virginia Department of Health database by the lab. This database is also accessed by the VCU contact tracing team. However, VDH does not automatically contact VCU contact tracers; rather, VCU students must report their positive test results to Student Health via the call center (1-804-MYCOVID or 1-804-692-6843) to document their case.
- If the student calls the COVID hotline, they will speak to a representative from Student Health during working hours or a medical call service during non-working hours.
All students, regardless of whether they receive a test through VCU or an outside source (doctor’s office, pharmacy, clinic, etc.) MUST report a positive test result to Student Health Services via the call center (1-804-MYCOVID or 1-804-692-6843) to document their case.
The close contacts of the student will be identified using criteria established by the Virginia Department of Health. Those close contacts will be notified by the contact tracing team to quarantine. Faculty will be notified if they meet the VDH criteria as close contacts. Facility areas identified through this process as needing cleaning will be coordinated by the facilities campus coordinator and the building manager.
Adhering to safety protocols is an important and immediate goal to promote a healthier VCU community. Refusal by students to comply with rules can include progressive disciplinary action up to and including suspension, based on the VCU Student Code of Conduct.