COVID-19 Protocols

SHSU Preparedness and Response Plan for Coronavirus (SARS CoV-2)

Updated 1/20/2022

Public health recommendations guides SHSU decision-making in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, but every unique situation cannot be anticipated. SHSU will continue to actively collaborate with public health officials on mitigation strategies based on available medical information, data, and wise judgment to help prevent the spread of the virus within the SHSU Community.

Isolation & Quarantine

The below information on Isolation and Quarantine are recommendations from the CDC.

Isolation (for those diagnosed or presumed to have COVID-19): If you are asymptomatic (never develop symptoms), day 0 is the day you were tested (not the day you received your positive test result), and day 1 is the first full day following the day you were tested. People who never develop symptoms should isolate for a full 5 days after their first positive SARS-CoV-2 test (i.e., days 0 through 5). Wear a well-fitting mask for 10 days following your positive test result (if asymptomatic) to limit spread when around others at home and in public. If you develop symptoms soon (i.e., within a week) after your positive test result, the clock restarts at day 0 on the day of symptom onset.

If you have mild symptoms, day 0 of isolation is the day of symptom onset, regardless of when you tested positive, and day 1 is the first full day following the day your symptoms started. Persons with mild symptoms should isolate for a full 5 days after symptom onset (i.e., days 0 through 5) and until symptoms have improved. If you continue to have fever or your other symptoms have not improved after 5 days of isolation, you should wait to end your isolation until you are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication and your other symptoms have improved. Wear a well-fitting mask for 10 days following your onset of symptoms to limit spread to others in the home or other close contacts.

Quarantine: If you have received all vaccine and booster doses recommended by CDC, you do not need to quarantine. You should wear a well-fitting mask around others for 10 days from the date of your last close contact with someone with COVID-19 (the date of last close contact is considered day 0). Get tested at least 5 days after you last had close contact with someone with COVID-19, and follow isolation recommendations if your test result is positive.

For people who have not received all recommended vaccine doses, including a booster dose for people 18 years of age or older, a 5-day quarantine period is recommended. Day 0 starts the day you had close contact with confirmed COVID-19, and day 1 is the first full day following the last close contact. Wear a well-fitting mask for 10 days (i.e., days 0 through 10) after your last close contact, including when around others in public and at home, especially if there are people in your household who are unvaccinated or immunocompromised or at high risk for severe disease.

1. COVID-19 Work Group

  1. The SHSU COVID-19 Work Group is chaired by Dr. Drew Miller
  2. The Student Health Center (SHC) response team collaborates with the local and regional public health officials to:
    1. Review positive test results from self-reports and SHC records each business day.
    2. Facilitate reporting of a positive test result for COVID-19 or close contact to the Texas Department of State Health Services. The SHC response team will contact each case that is self-reported to:
      1. Interview the reporter and advise of any needed isolation protocols or determine any additional campus close contact exposures that need to be notified
      2. In the case of a positive test result of an employee who was present at work while in the window of being contagious, the SHC response team will advise Human Resources.
      3. To the extent possible, and in accord with federal and state law, maintains confidentiality of the medical privacy and personal identity of symptomatic or tested individuals.
    3. Liaises with MARCOM and report de-identified positive test results to the SHSU community.
  3. Human Resources advises employees and supervisors of responsibilities and actions necessary for management of positive test results and close contact cases identified in the workplace. Further HR advises how to appropriately communicate heath matters with the employee’s co-workers and the SHSU community while maintaining medical privacy.

2. Measures to Prevent the Spread of Disease on Campus

  1. Employees and students are informed via email, the SHSU.edu/katsafe/covid website, and campus signage, to self-monitor for signs and symptoms of COVID-19 and to seek appropriate medical attention if they suspect infection or possible close contact.
  2. Employees and students should report positive COVID-19 cases to SHSU via the online form. The Student Health Center (SHC) response team oversees case tracking and provides guidance for student response and return to campus.
  3. Hand sanitizer is available at the entrance of each building, and SHSU strongly encourages individuals to wash their hands or use hand sanitizer upon entering any building.
  4. Isolation Areas:
    1. As needed, management will identify a short-term isolation area for individuals who become ill, do not have a private office, and experience a delay in promptly leaving campus (such as arranging transport for medical care).
    2. Residential students required to isolate or quarantine will follow the COVID-19 Residence Hall Infectious Disease Policy and Procedure in accordance with the Housing COVID-19 Residential Agreement.
    3. Non-residential students required to isolate or quarantine will do so in their permanent residence or other off-campus location.

3. Notifications and Medical Privacy

  1. An employee (regardless of vaccine status) should notify the employee’s supervisor when isolation or quarantine is recommended and discuss potential leave or telecommuting options for any periods of isolation or quarantine. Employees and supervisors may visit with Human Resources at 936-294-2637.
  2. Students who are symptomatic, test positive, or are medically advised to quarantine (regardless of vaccine status) should personally notify their instructors of any physical absence. Employees must maintain the privacy of any medical information. However, assigned administrators may disclose:
    1. Student COVID-19 test results and exposure information to the Texas Department of State Health Services, and other appropriate parties under the health and safety exception to FERPA.
    2. Employee COVID-19 test results and exposure information to the Texas Department of State Health Services.

4. Protocols for Infectious or Potentially Infectious Individuals

    Possible symptoms of COVID-19 include:

    • cough,
    • shortness of breath or difficulty breathing,
    • chills and/or shaking with chills,
    • muscle pain,
    • headache,
    • sore throat,
    • nasal congestion,
    • new loss of taste or smell,
    • nausea or vomiting,
    • diarrhea,
    • feeling feverish or a measured temperature of greater than or equal to 100.0 degrees Fahrenheit

    The university is following current CDC guidelines for infectious or potentially infectious individuals. . Employees should discuss work absences for isolation or quarantine with supervisors and Human Resources. (Benefit-eligible employees should review requirements under the SHSU Employee Leaves Policy).

    5. Protocol for asymptomatic, critical infrastructure workers:

    1. Remote Work Recommended
      1. For staff employees, supervisors should approve telecommuting for the brief period of quarantine when a portion of the exposed employee’s job responsibilities can be performed remotely. When the supervisor determines an exposed staff employee may telecommute in accordance with SHSU Finance and Operations Policy ER-12, the supervisor coordinates completion of a Telecommuting Proposal.
      2. Faculty members should discuss remote work options for periods of quarantine with the department chair.
    2. When remote work or telecommuting are not appropriate, the employee may physically report to work under the following conditions:
      1. the protocol is followed for a period of 10 days starting with the employee’s last date of close contact to the individual that tested positive for COVID-19,
      2. the employee remains asymptomatic,
      3. the employee monitors symptoms prior to starting work each day, and immediately reports onset of symptoms to the employee’s supervisor and returns home to isolate,
      4. the employee maintains at least a 6-foot distance from all other individuals while in the workplace, and wearing a face covering is recommended.
      5. the employee wipes down all common areas (such as break rooms and bathrooms), the employee contacts with appropriate sanitizing products provided by SHSU.
      6. If a close contact exposed individual develops any COVID-19 symptoms (listed above) during quarantine or while operating as a critical infrastructure worker, the individual must isolate and cannot return to campus until 10 days have passed and the criteria in 4.a. are satisfied.

6. Supervisors of employees that tested positive for COVID-19:

  1. Notify the employee of obligations to follow these protocols to include reporting a positive case.
  2. May contact Human Resources at employment@shsu.edu or 936-294-2637 with questions about the departmental response to an employee’s reported symptoms, positive test result, or close contact.
  3. Maintain the medical privacy of the employee.
  4. Coordinate any notice to co-workers of potential close contact without stating the name or identifying information of the employee.