Coronavirus (COVID-19) Employee Guide - Frequently Asked Questions

Click on the question you are interested in to see the response. Questions were asked by PACE or employee related questions submitted for the Talk with Tuminez Town Hall Meetings.  Please also read the COVID-19 information FAQ that has questions related to campus and not specific to Human Resources.

Campus

Which campus services are open?

As of 08/03/2020, all offices are opened. Please see the uvu.info website or the Campus Service FAQ for information about any specific service closures. 

Is there a possibility of campus closing or going remote again?

The COVID-19 Task Force meets regularly to look at key factors and review on a case by case basis. If our cases spike in Utah County or if we see that we have an issue on campus where we were having increased transmission, then we would evaluate and decide what the best course of action to make sure our employees are staying safe. We're making sure that we're using exceptional care as we're working through this pandemic. (TWT 08/13/2020)

 

COVID-19

If an employee calls in sick, how long do they need to stay home?

COVID-19: If an employee call in sick how long do they need to stay home?

The university requests that employees that are ill and/or showing symptoms that are not connected with a previous know non-contagious condition (i.e. asthma, allergies, pregnancy, etc.) refrain from coming campus. If allowed and able, the employee should work with their supervisor for possible remote work or employee should take sick leave for this duration. Once an employee is no longer experiencing symptoms for at least 24 hours, they are cleared to return to campus. Employees with COVID like symptoms will still be requested to fill out the Returning to Work after Illness or Exposure Form.

When, where, and how should I get tested for the coronavirus?

Testing capabilities for COVID-19 have increased dramatically since the beginning of the pandemic. Please see the most up to date information on Utah's COVID-19 Testing Information webpage. On Campus testing for students, faculty, and staff can be scheduled on UVU's Testing Page. For more information regarding medical and RX benefits related to COVID-19, please refer to the Magellan RX management COVID-19 virus FAQ's and the Regence COVID-19 Notice of Claims

COVID-19 testing is covered at 100% in-network and out-of-network for covered employees if medically necessary and ordered by a physician. Testing is not covered by insurance for personal travel.

What happens if someone on campus tests positive?

The local health department will be notified of people who have tested positive. They will then conduct tracking, tracing and surveillance. If you have had a significant exposure to a person testing positive, you will be contacted by the local health department to self-quarantine. UVU has also created a voluntary UVU COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form for Illness or Exposure that allows students, faculty, and staff to self-disclose if they have tested positive for COVID-19. With this information we will assist the health department as needed and ensure areas have been thoroughly cleaned if applicable. (TWT 04-08-2020)

What will happen if someone tests positive and they've been working on campus in an area with other employees?

To ensure campus safety, we follow the CDC guidelines and the State Department of Health guidelines and follow their procedures if we have someone test positive. Individuals who test positive, will be required to self-isolate for 14 days. We work with the Utah County Health Department to make sure we have contact and tracing going on. (TWT 06-17-2020) 

What COVID-19 / illness form should I complete?

The UVU COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form for Illness or Exposure should be completed if you have been tested (positive/negative) for COVID-19. This form is used to track, and diagnosis the spread of COVID-19 to ensure the safety of all employees, students, and visitors to campus.

The Returning to Work after Illness or Exposure Form should be completed if you are returning to work and have been ill in the last 14 days. This form is a safety tool used to review symptoms prior to releasing an employee to work on campus. 

 

Benefits and Leave

If I am asked to self-isolate, can I still work and get paid, or do I need to take vacation leave, sick, unpaid time?

Employees who may have been exposed to COVID-19, and are required to not report to work, are required to use leave time or telecommute to work, with supervisor approval. Supervisors are encouraged to provide flexibility. For more information, please visit the UVU Human Resources Coronavirus (COVID-19) Employee Guide or the Leave website for the HR Benefits Service Center

To encourage employees to stay home when they are sick or have symptoms of being sick, are you going to provide additional PTO sick time?

Employees that are feeling ill (regardless of current circumstances) are requested not to come to work so they can heal and recover, as well as protect the campus community. If you are ill, please notify your supervisor of your absence due to illness.  Further, UVU employees are asked to self-report if you have been or are being tested for COVID-19. The UVU COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form for Illness or Exposure helps in ensuring a safe working environment and in tracking the spread of COVID-19.  Employees who have recently been ill, should complete the Returning to Work after Illness or Exposure Form available on the Coronavirus (COVID-19) Employee Guide webpage. The University offers generous sick leave and sick leave accrual as well as leave provided through FMLA. 

What mental health services are available at this time?

UVU offers full-time employees the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), allowing benefits-eligible faculty to receive up to four counseling sessions free of charge. UVU benefits also include a robust list of mental health professionals. Please contact HR if you have questions. 

If you are having suicidal thoughts or are concerned about a loved one who may be having suicidal thoughts, please call the 24-hour Suicide Prevention Lifeline at 1-800-273-TALK (1-800-273-8255) or you can visit the Suicide Prevention Lifeline website. For more information regarding suicide and prevention, please visit utahsuicideprevention.org.

 

General Safety

Do I have to wear a mask? 

All employees of the university are recommended to wear a face covering, if they have not been fully vaccinated, while working on campus as a condition of their employment. Employees who disregard the requirement to wear a face covering may be in violation of UVU policy and state and federal law or regulation and subject to corrective action. Refer to recommended face coverings for UVU Employees and Students for more details. 

What is an approved face covering? Do I have to wear it in my office?

The Recommended Face Covering Guidelines are intended to minimize ambiguity and promote consistency across campus in complying with face-covering requirements. Refer to this guide for questions related to face coverings. 

What if a colleague refuses to wear a mask or face shield in our department?

If a coworker refuses to wear a mask, as per the Recommended Face Covering Guidelines, bring up your concerns to your supervisor. In certain cases, the use of a face covering is not advised. These cases should be addressed on a case-by-case basis with the employee’s supervisor and, if necessary, with the employee accommodations coordinator in Human Resources (EmployeeWellness@uvu.edu ) and as per Policy 152: Accommodations for Individuals with Disabilities Such cases include:

  • Individuals with a medical condition for whom wearing a face covering could cause harm or obstruct breathing.
  • Individuals with hearing impairment or communicating with an individual who is hearing impaired, where the ability to see the mouth is essential for communication.

How often will our departments’ public spaces and offices be cleaned?

Departments will be responsible for cleaning their space beyond the daily cleaning Campus Services provides. Departments should consider ordering their own disinfectant and paper towels as well as requesting cleaning supplies from Campus Services. Faculty members and staff with concerns about cleanliness are to clean their own areas beyond what Campus Services provides. Administrative assistants cannot be assigned to clean individual offices or spaces occupied primarily by single individuals. If you do not feel comfortable with Custodial Services cleaning your offices, please post a note on your office door.

Is UVU’s air system filtered for viruses?

UVU has a filtering system, MERV, in all large buildings. Systems vary, since some areas such as the science buildings have traditionally needed higher levels of filtration. UVU will increase air exchange rates to push the air through the filters and slightly over-pressurize the buildings to help exchange the air. Filters are changed on a rigid schedule. Even before COVID-19, UVU was changing air filters more often than recommended.

Is UVU going to be requiring a negative COVID-19 test before returning to work?

Employees who are ill with symptoms consistent with COVID-19 are to self-isolate at home. This includes an employee who tested positive, negative, or did not test at all for the COVID-19. Employees who have been tested for COVID-19 are encouraged to complete the UVU COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form for Illness or Exposure. Employees who have been out sick for any symptoms related to COVID-19 are required to complete the Returning to Work after Illness or Exposure Form.
Will I have my temperature taken before working on campus?
Employees who are in positions that put others at risk (e.g., health clinic, food services, etc.) will have their temperatures taken by qualified nursing students.

Can supervisors send their employees who show symptoms of COIVD-19 home?

If a supervisor observes an employee with COVID-19 symptoms, the supervisor must send the employee home. Employees who have been out sick for any symptoms related to COVID-19 are required to complete the Returning to Work after Illness or Exposure Form.

 

Remote Work

What is the status of remote work across campus? Are there plans for a permanent remote work policy? If so, when will the policy details be shared with faculty and staff?

Currently each Temporary Remote Work Agreement is valid through May 31, 2021. 

A Remote Work Task Force, under the direction of President Tuminez, has put together a new permanent remote work process. For more information, please review the files on the HR Remote Work webpage in myUVU

Each vice president has reviewed  and identifying positions that must work on campus, those that may use a hybrid approach (partial work on campus/partial work remote), and those that may work on a fully remote basis. HR has  developed training for supervisors and employees. 

The work an employee performs when working remotely is no different from the work performed while working on campus. This option gives employees flexibility in where the work is done, allowing them to save time and money from having to commute to their campus workspace every day. Working remotely is not an entitlement nor is it a university-wide benefit. Remote work does not change the terms and conditions of employment with the university. Visit the Remote Work Information section of the Human Resources Website within myUVU for additional information. 

(Updated 05/04/21 with new remote work information)

If I am directed by my supervisor to forward my work phone to my cell phone, will I get paid for using my personal cell for work?

This concern should be discussed with your supervisor. In accordance with UVU Policy 329 Telephone and Cellular Phone Usage, employees required to use a personal cell phone to perform their duties may be provided an allowance from UVU for business purpose use. This form is available here. If you are not on campus and not forwarding your work phone, make sure you update your UVU voicemail

Can employees speak with HR directly instead of with their supervisor if they want to continue working from home?

To ensure continuity of processes, employees are requested to follow their proper chain of command. The decision on if an employee can work remote is ultimately up to the supervisor. Have a conversation with your supervisor to discuss the reasons you feel you can work remote and the hesitations your supervisor has. If you and your supervisor disagree, consider working with your
second-level supervisor. Feel free to reach out to an HR Business Partner to help you navigate these conversations. 

 

Employee Travel

Am I allowed to travel out of the state/country on personal travel?

We encourage you, when considering your personal travel choices, to follow travel advisories issued by the CDC and local and state authorities. Refer to the Travel FAQ for guidelines and more details.

Can I travel for business purposes?

Acknowledging the risks and recommendations and to preserve the health of our UVU community, all University-related travel is restricted and must be cancelled until further notice. As an exception to the above travel restriction, travel considered business essential for the university must be approved by the divisional vice president prior to making travel arrangements. Additionally, until further notice, all future airfare must be purchased through Concur or the State Travel Office. Please review the Travel FAQ for the most current business travel information.