COVID-19: Health and Safety Plan

COVID-19 Testing

Revised January 7, 2021

Employee Testing

Faculty and staff who are symptomatic or who have had known close contact with an infected person should arrange for testing through their private health care provider or another available testing site. Close contact is defined as having been within six feet of distance, for 15 minutes or longer total in a 24 hour period, from a person who is COVID-19 positive. Persons who are exposed and asymptomatic should self-quarantine and monitor their symptoms using a self-monitoring log for 14 days, and wait three to five days after exposure due to the average incubation period for COVID-19 to be tested. Tests performed within a few days of exposure are not likely to be positive even in persons who eventually become infected. Those who receive a positive test should remain isolated for 10 days from the test date, be fever free for 24 hours and have improvement in symptoms. You do NOT need a negative test to return to work. Isolating for 10 days suffices.

Employees will be subject to testing at the start of the spring 2021 semester based on stratification of their risk based on OSHA guidelines.  Human Resources will contact employees for the testing. 

Operational Tiers and Employee Risk Pyramid
The University has adopted an Operational Tier system to help manage Arcadia’s response to COVID challenges and outline the steps we must take toward mitigation. This system will allow Arcadia to remain All-Modes ready operationally as well as academically and seamlessly shift, if necessary, to a different operational tier during the spring semester. For more information on the University’s Operational Tier system, visit arcadia.edu/covid. 

The University also has developed levels, based on an OSHA model, to categorize risk of staff and faculty positions. These levels (very high, high, moderate, and lower risk) will help with planning for employees who will be on campus (based on the Operational Tiers) and need COVID-19 testing.  Testing may depend on, among other variables, employee duties, responsibilities, and potential interaction with community members. Vice Presidents and departmental supervisors will meet with their teams and Human Resources to help categorize employee positions in the risk pyramid. Human Resources will be in contact with employees that will need COVID-19 testing before and/or during the spring semester and relay the testing process and protocols. 

Very High Exposure Risk 
Employees in this category are those with very high potential for exposure to known or suspected sources of COVID-19. At Arcadia, these employee positions would include staff members in Student Health Services or those involved in COVID-19 testing procedures; those who are in buildings that are closed and not routinely cleaned. 

High Exposure Risk 
High exposure risk jobs are those with high potential for exposure to known or suspected sources of COVID-19. They require frequent and/or close contact with (i.e., within 6 feet of) people who may be infected with COVID-19, but who are not known or suspected COVID-19 patients.  At Arcadia, these employee positions include staff members who will be on campus two or more days per week or who spend more than four hours per day on campus; who perform collaborative work bringing people in close contact; whose activities and duties involve moving among workstations; who have longer periods of contact with others; who work indoors; whose duties include any aspect of increased respiratory effort (vocal projections including but not limited to singing, performing, lecturing, wind instruments, etc.); those who are in buildings that are closed and not routinely cleaned. 

Moderate Exposure Risk 
Medium exposure risk jobs include those that may require frequent and/or close contact with (i.e., within 6 feet of) people who may be infected with COVID-19, but who are not known or suspected COVID-19 patients. Arcadia employee positions that fall into this risk tier include those who spend 1-3 hours on campus, or who visit campus 1-2 times per week; employees who perform outdoor work; those who, through their duties, work mostly independently with brief contact with others; who share a workspace with others without interactions; those who are in buildings that are officially open and routinely cleaned. 

Lower Exposure Risk 
Lower exposure risk jobs are those that do not require contact with people known to be, or suspected of being, infected with COVID-19 or frequent close contact with (i.e., within 6 feet of) the general public. Arcadia staff positions that fall into this category are those that require employees to spend less than an hour a week on campus, or who visit campus 1-2 times per month; those who perform independent work with no or infrequent contact with others; those who remain at a workspace or station without others; those who perform outdoor work activity without contact with others; those who are in buildings that are officially open and routinely cleaned. 

The University urges all employees to also get a flu vaccine, especially when considering the possibility of being exposed and contracting both the flu and COVID-19. Information about on-campus flu shot clinics for employees has been and will be communicated by email.

Student COVID-19 Testing

SHS will continue to offer symptomatic COVID-19 testing using the below mentioned methods while conducting regular mass surveillance testing in conjunction with the Broad Institute and CIC laboratory. Symptomatic testing is when a person displays symptoms listed in the Guidelines for COVID-19 Testing in SHS chart; surveillance testing is used to monitor the state of COVID-19 on Arcadia’s campus and provides insight into the spread of the virus among certain groups of people. 

As per the Healthcare provider’s clinical judgement, Student Health Services (SHS) has the capability to use either COVID-19 PCR (polymerase chain reaction) anterior nares testing which is picked up daily by Labcorp or COVID-19 anterior nares rapid antigen testing which would be analyzed by the Point of Care BD Veritor machine in the office.

Mass surveillance testing will be conducted in conjunction with the Broad Institute using PCR anterior nasal swab testing.  Results will be delivered within 48 hours of testing.  

Arcadia’s COVID testing dashboard, which includes information about cases on campus, is available here. 

In addition to the regular mass surveillance testing referenced on the previous page, testing in the SHS office will be conducted on symptomatic students and students who are close contacts of a positive person using the following flowchart:
 

Guidelines for COVID-19 Testing in SHS

 

SHS will offer COVID-19 testing in Student Health Services to any Arcadia students with:

  • Cough OR
  • Shortness of breath OR
  • Two of the following symptoms: fatigue, fever, chills, sweats, muscle or body aches, sore throat, headache, new loss of taste or smell, nausea, vomiting or diarrhea.

Testing will be prioritized for symptomatic students who:

  • Are at increased risk for severe disease and/or have pre-existing chronic
  • Medical conditions
  • Reside on campus
  • Work in congregate settings
  • Are close contacts of cases or persons who are associated with a known cluster of cases.

Testing will be offered to asymptomatic students who are close contacts of a known case and, as noted, as part of the University’s mass surveillance testing program or other targeted testing, such as being part of a cluster of cases (e.g., on a residential hall floor). Close contact is defined as having been in contact with a person who is COVID19 positive within six feet of distance for 15 minutes or longer during a 24-hour period. Persons who are asymptomatic and exposed to an infected student and their roommates should self-quarantine and monitor their symptoms using a self-monitoring log. Quarantine can end after day 10 without testing if no symptoms have been reported during daily monitoring OR after day 7 if a diagnostic specimen tests negative and is collected on day 5 or thereafter and the person remains asymptomatic. Quarantine may not be shortened beyond the end of day 7. Due to the average incubation period for COVID-19, tests performed a few days within exposure are not likely to be positive even in persons who eventually become infected.

Exposed students should self-quarantine and avoid contact with others. This includes staying home from work, not attending classes or on-campus functions, wearing a mask when around others, avoiding contact with persons at-risk for severe disease, and monitoring for symptoms of COVID-19 as detailed above.

Students who are awaiting test results should remain at home or in their campus residence under quarantine. Those who test positive and do not require hospitalization should continue isolation for at least 10 days from symptom onset, 24 hours after resolution of fever and improvement in symptoms. Students who do require hospitalization should remain in isolation for 10 days, after they have been discharged from the hospital. Students who test positive for COVID-19 will be contacted by the Arcadia University contact tracing team to identify their close contacts from within the University community as a part of University-focused contact tracing and containment and possibly by the county health department to identify close contacts in Montgomery County.

SHS, along with faculty and staff experts in Arcadia’s Master of Public Health (MPH) program, have established a University-focused contact tracing team. The framework for contact tracing is based on training provided by the Montgomery County Department of Health, in accordance with campus needs. The team will consist of a Nurse Practitioner from SHS, colleagues in Athletic Training, an Intern Coordinator and graduate-level students from MPH. This team will be trained to identify, contact, communicate, and coordinate testing, isolation needs, and reporting using technology including, but not limited to, SHS’s electronic medical record system Medicat and Salesforce. Every effort will be made to conduct contact tracing for University-based contacts for faculty and staff. If an individual is determined to be COVID-19 positive, it will be promptly reported to the appropriate parties. 

Reporting Positive Tests, Symptoms, or Exposure

  • Students who live on campus and have tested positive for COVID-19, are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, or have been in close contact with a known case should promptly report to COVID contact tracing team using the COVID Self-Disclosure Form
    • The Arcadia University (AU) contact tracing team will provide guidance with respect to self-isolation or quarantine, assisting the student’s close contacts with respect to the same, reporting necessary information to the Department of Health, and arranging for appropriate responsive measures to support those affected with respect to housing, dining, and facilities (e.g., additional cleaning).
  • Employees or others (contractors, volunteers, visitors) who come to or live on campus and have tested positive for COVID-19, are exhibiting symptoms of COVID-19, or have been in close contact with a known case should promptly report to the Arcadia contact tracing team using the COVID Self-Disclosure Form
    • The AU contact tracing team will provide guidance with respect to self-isolation or quarantine, assisting the employee’s close contacts in the Arcadia Community with respect to the same, arrange for appropriate responsive measures to support those affected with respect to facilities (e.g., additional cleaning) and any other relevant issues. and reporting necessary information to the Department of Health.  Human Resources will provide guidance on how employees can access paid and unpaid leave as appropriate. 
  • The University maintains a centralized COVID-19 webpage where relevant information will be shared, as well as a page that details Arcadia’s ongoing plans and processes for the spring 2021 semester
  • Consistent with its obligations to report immediate threats to health and safety to the University community, reports indicating a potential “hot spot,” cluster, or other significant factors, may result in additional notifications to the University community. Individual privacy will be respected, and the University will act in conformance with the United States Department of Education’s FERPA & Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) of March 2020 and/or other relevant guidance, as available.
  • Arcadia maintains an internal reporting procedure for appropriate staff members that is followed when a University community member tests positive for COVID.