COVID-19 Campus Protocols

PROTOCOLS

To be on campus during COVID-19 the Campus Community must follow these seven protocols:

  1. Be Symptom Free

  2. Practice Diligent Hygiene

  3. Maintain Physical Distancing (MPD)

  4. Assess Proximity Work (when MPD is not possible)

  5. Wear Non-Medical Masks (NMM)

  6. Limit interaction, and

  7. Respect and care for yourself, your colleagues and your community. 

Be Symptom Free

Every day before coming to campus (or leaving your residence room) please ensure you are Symptom Free.

When to call 811

Call 811 for assessment if in the past 48 hours you have had, or you are currently experiencing:

Fever (i.e. chills/sweats) OR Cough (new or worsening)

OR

Two or more of the following symptoms (new or worsening):

  • Sore throat

  • Runny nose/nasal congestion

  • Headache

  • Shortness of breath

You should also call 811 for assessment if you think you've been exposed to COVID-19 or have any other symptoms that concern you.

**This information is consistent with the revised list of COVID-19 symptoms updated by the Nova Scotia government on September 4, 2020**

If employees are requested to go for testing, they must contact their supervisor and inform them when the test will occur and stay home until the test result comes back negative.  If the test result is positive the employee will stay home until cleared by Public Health.  The employee must communicate the test results to their supervisor. The supervisor is to notify HR, who will work with the employee and the supervisor on the appropriate return to work plan.  Nova Scotia Public Health will arrange contact tracing if required.

Practice Diligent Hygiene

Employees must wash and/or sanitize their hands frequently.  Hand sanitizer will be available in office buildings near common areas used for work.  Employees using shared surfaces and equipment should sanitize their hands prior to use (photocopier/ door handle etc.) and after completing work in a common area.  Employees will be provided wipes to use on contact areas within their office/work area. The use of sanitizers and cleaners can have a negative impact on some employees.  The Office of Risk Management will work with employees to find appropriate solutions to minimize the impact, and will ensure the required training is in place to use the products.  Employees are reminded not to touch their faces and continue to have proper respiratory etiquette (e.g. coughing into their arm, wearing a non-medical mask (NMM), etc.).

FM custodians will clean common building space daily and will clean high contact areas (doors, washrooms) twice daily.  FM will post a checklist displaying the date, time and and the name of the employee who cleaned the facility.

Maintain Physical Distancing (MPD)

Maintain Physical Distancing (MPD) of two metres from others.  One of the main ways to prevent the spread of the virus is to limit close exposure to others.  Everyone must maintain physical distancing of two metres whenever they can.  Current Public Health directives require that all Nova Scotians follow physical distancing guidelines to help limit the spread of COVID-19 and reduce the risk of getting sick.  

Assess Proximity Work

When MPD is not possible and two or more workers are required to be within two metres of each other to complete a task (moving equipment, etc), supervisors shall get pre-approval for this work through the Office of Risk Management. This work will be kept to a minimum, and is subject to ongoing assessment. Supervisors should submit their approval request at least 24 hours in advance by completing the form. These requests will be reviewed by the Office of Risk Management, and a hazard assessment will be completed with the affected employees to ensure the most effective controls are in place, reviewing the hierarchy order noted here:

StFX’s Occupational Health & Safety Officer can assist with the creation of Safe Operating Procedures (SOP) to ensure safe work, as identified through the hazard assessment process.

Wear a Non-Medical Mask

It has been recognized by Public Health authorities around the world that the proper use of non-medical masks (NMM) can help to prevent the spread of COVID-19.  Wearing such masks is considered part of our own personal preventive measures we should be taking to do our part in keeping everyone safe and healthy.  A mask acts as a barrier. It reduces the chance of spreading respiratory droplets to others and prevents droplets from landing on surfaces when you cough, sneeze, talk or laugh. 

Updated Thursday, February 11, 2021, the wearing of non-medical masks is mandatory inside all buildings across campus.. The only exceptions include while eating (with appropriate physical distancing protocols respected) and while employees are alone in their office or students are alone within their residence rooms.  The use of non-medical masks is required outside if physical distancing cannot be assured.

There are employees on campus whose workstation may be outside or in an area otherwise open to other employees.  In these situations, a hazard assessment will be conducted, and an alternate control may be approved.

NMMs are a form of administrative controls, and are not considered Personal Protective Equipment.  They are a preventive measure to protect those around the wearer by helping to capture the wearer’s droplets and stop them from reaching other people and commonly-touched surfaces.  StFX will provide NMMs to employees for use at work.  This is a fairly significant change in most people’s day to day routine, and may require specific accommodations, and will be based on a hazard assessment of each person’s work environment and duties. 

Limit interaction

Employees are expected to continue to use electronic forms of communication (MS Teams, phones etc.) as the primary method of interacting.  Planned meetings of colleagues where electronic communication is not possible will follow the Public Health limit on gatherings (currently 10 and under). Participants will only meet in a room where physical distancing can be maintained, and participants may be required to wear NMMs. Employees should try and limit themselves to occupying their office or lab.  Employees should avoid going to other building on campus to avoid unnecessary face to face interactions.  Reasonable exceptions are supervisors whose teams work in other buildings or faculty and teaching staff who deliver courses in multiple buildings.

Respect and care for yourself, your colleagues and your community.

We have all been impacted by COVID-19 and want University operations to return to their vibrant, productive ways.  To get back to an excited, populated campus we need to look out for each other and make the adjustments noted above.  We all have personal accountability to follow these rules.  All employees are encouraged to Report any Health and Safety concerns here.

Completed reports will generate an email notification to the Office of Risk Management who will work with relevant departments to resolve the concern.

Employees should report incidents of non-compliance to their supervisor, and work together to complete a Report a Health and Safety Concern report.  Employees should not attempt to personally resolve issues related to non-compliance.  Although not encouraged, concerns can be submitted confidentially by not completing the name and contact information fields on the form.