Baylor Notification Procedures for Individuals Presumptively Positive or with Positive Tests for COVID-19

July 2, 2020

Employees, including student workers, are required to comply with Baylor's self-screening checklist* before reporting to work and immediately report to their supervisor (1) any CDC-identified symptoms of COVID-19, (2) any COVID-19 testing or (3) any laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 PCR positive. Employees also may elect instead to report any positive test to their Human Resources Consultant (HRC). Supervisors and others must continue to comply with Baylor personnel policies on confidentiality of medical information. Individuals with questions should contact Human Resources at askHR@baylor.edu.

Contact tracing: Employees who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, waiting on results of a COVID-19 test or have tested positive for COVID-19 will be asked by their HR Consultant to provide the location of their workspace and the last time they occupied their on-campus workspace as well as close contacts. (Close contact is defined as having contact within 6 feet for 15 minutes or more. Wearing a face covering reduces risk of transmission of infection but close contact has still occurred.) This process, commonly known as "contract tracing" is used to identify individuals who may have been exposed to the virus so that they can self-isolate as appropriate and to identify areas that may need additional cleaning and disinfection. This information also will assist the Waco-McLennan County Public Health District in its contact-tracing efforts.

Relocation: After employee notification, supervisors and Human Resources will work together to determine next steps and potential relocation of other employees when appropriate, e.g., based upon how far in the past a test was positive. Options for relocation to an alternative workspace may include moving to different workspace or moving employees to telework until cleaning can be completed.

Cleaning: The supervisor or Human Resources will notify Environmental Health and Safety at 254-710-2900 or ehs@baylor.edu and provide the location of the workspace and the last time of occupancy of the employee with concerns or a COVID-19 positive test. EHS will coordinate with Aramark (Baylor Custodial Services) to conduct enhanced cleaning and disinfecting of the workspace 24 hours after being notified. If the supervisor has questions or needs the space available immediately (less than 24 hours), they should contact EHS with that information.

Possible exposure: Employees should notify and work with their supervisors if they believe they have been exposed to someone who has tested positive or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19. Should any employee start to experience COVID-19 symptoms, the employee should notify their supervisor, seek medical treatment and stay home in a non-work status in order to support full recovery. Employees who have potential exposure to COVID-19 but are not experiencing symptoms should follow CDC guidelines and self-quarantine for 14 days. During the period of self-quarantine, employees continue to telework unless they are otherwise on leave.

People with COVID-19 have had a wide range of symptoms reported, ranging from mild symptoms to severe illness. Symptoms may appear 2-14 days after exposure to the virus. People with these symptoms may have COVID-19:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

This list does not include all possible symptoms. CDC will continue to update this list as more is known about COVID-19.

Employees should return to work when they are fit for duty as outlined in Baylor's Return to Work/Fitness for Duty Policy. Baylor's goal is to return workers to work in the safest manner possible while acknowledging possible limitations that may impact the ability to perform the essential functions of the job thus requiring modifications. While a return to work typically requires the assessment and documentation by the employee's health care provider, this may not be reasonably possible due to COVID-19. Therefore, employees should follow CDC guidelines to determine the appropriate time to return to work, while Baylor asks returning employees to be symptom free and fever-free for at least 72 hours without fever-reducing medication before returning to work.

Student Health Concerns: Baylor students concerned that they may have been exposed to the virus that causes COVID-19 should call the Baylor Health Services dedicated nurse line at 254-710-4939. This phone line is for questions or concerns about the coronavirus and will be answered by nurses from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Monday-Friday. Baylor Health Services will be able to make appointments at this phone number for testing for the coronavirus, if students meet several required criteria.

When the health center is closed, Baylor students have access to a nurse line after hours, on weekends and holidays at 254-710-1010.

* This COVID-19 self-assessment has been developed by the CDC, FEMA and the White House. You should always consult with your health care provider and follow your provider's recommendations, including their recommendation on testing.

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