Spring 2022 Return to Campus COVID-19 Requirements:
All faculty and staff must provide proof of one of the following by Monday, Jan. 10:
- a negative COVID-19 PCR or antigen test collected between Jan. 3 to Jan. 10.
- proof of a prior positive COVID-19 infection within the last 90 days and completion of a 10-day isolation prior to move-in date.
- a completed COVID-19 vaccination record.
Spring 2022 Required Monthly Testing:
- All faculty and staff reporting to campus for work must participate in monthly COVID-19 testing regardless of vaccination status.
- Beginning on Jan. 18, 2022, monthly required testing will resume with testing of Group One. As in the fall, testing will continue in 4-week cycles with each group testing for one week.
- Faculty and staff will receive a notification email the week that they are scheduled for testing, and they will have seven days to participate in on-campus testing or to submit documentation of outside testing to be compliant. Nasal tests, saliva tests and antigen/rapid tests are all acceptable forms of testing.
- To be exempted from monthly testing due to prior infection, faculty and staff must provide results of a positive PCR or antigen COVID-10 test. This will exempt them during the 90-day period immediately following the date of the positive result. Off-campus positive results must be uploaded to the MyHealthSpace portal for review.
For more information about testing, please refer to the:
- 2022 COVID-19 plan
- spring 2022 testing details
- frequently asked questions
On November 29, 2021 we sent notification to impacted employees regarding federal Executive Order 14042, “Ensuring Adequate COVID-19 Safety Protocols for Federal Contractors.” The Executive Order requires federal contractors--including the University of South Carolina--to ensure that all employees who work on or in connection with a federal contract to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or receive approval for a medical or religious exemption.
On December 7, 2021, a federal court in Georgia issued a preliminary injunction preventing the federal government nationwide from enforcing the Executive Order’s vaccine mandate for federal contractors and employees. Therefore, the university is suspending the COVID-19 vaccine requirement for our employees who work on or in connection with a federal contract. Vaccinations are still recommended for those who are medically eligible. Visit our COVID-19 site for more information. The University of South Carolina is committed to complying with all federal requirements and we will provide additional updates as needed.
- Face coverings are required in the following spaces:
- Inside all campus buildings, unless you are in your own residence hall room or private office or you are eating inside campus dining facilities.
- Medical facilities: Required in the Center for Health and Well-Being, Thomson Health Center, COVID-19 testing facilities, and any other medical facility.
- Public transportation: Required on shuttles, buses and other forms of university transportation.
- The above face covering requirements will remain until conditions and public health recommendations dictate a policy modification.
- Medical-grade face coverings, such as N95, KN95 or surgical masks, are more effective than cloth coverings. No matter the face covering you choose, make sure it fits tightly over your nose and mouth to prevent the spread of respiratory droplets.
- Employees who have health conditions that make wearing a face covering difficult are
encouraged to talk with their supervisor about alternative options. Depending on the
situation and the needs of the unit, these alternatives may include using a face shield
rather than a face covering or modifications to a physical workspace such as a transparent
Policy UNIV 3.04 Communicable Disease Outbreak Mitigation Measures [pdf] includes specific directives concerning the need for and use of face coverings on campus.
For more information about face coverings, please refer to our frequently asked questions.
Isolation (if you test positive for COVID-19):
- Following the most updated guidelines from the CDC and SCDHEC, students, faculty and staff who test positive for COVID-19 will be expected to isolate off campus for five full days to prevent the spread of illness regardless of vaccination status. Following this isolation, if symptoms completely resolve, the individual may leave isolation but must wear a face covering at all times for an additional five days when around others.
Qurantine (if you are exposed to someone with COVID-19)
- Fully vaccinated individuals who completed a two-dose Moderna vaccine series within the last 6 months, two-dose Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine series within the last 5 months or the one-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine within the last 2 months and those who have received a booster are not required to quarantine following exposure to a positive COVID-19 infection if they are not showing any symptoms. However, they should wear a face covering around others for 10 days and receive a COVID test 5 days after exposure.
- Individuals who have had a confirmed COVID-19 infection within the last 90 days (tested positive using a health care-conducted viral test) are not required to quarantine following exposure to a positive COVID-19 infection if they are not showing any symptoms. However, they should wear a face covering around others for 10 days and receive a COVID test 5 days after exposure.
- Unvaccinated individuals must quarantine off campus for 5 days, get a test on day 5, and wear a mask around others for 5 additional days following exposure to a positive COVID-19 infection.
- Individuals who received a Moderna vaccine series more than 6 months ago, Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine series more than 5 months ago or the one-dose Johnson & Johnson more than 2 months ago and have not received a booster must quarantine off campus for 5 days, get a test on day 5, and wear a mask around others for 5 additional days following exposure to a positive COVID-19 infection.
- All students living on campus are required to file a quarantine and isolation plan with Housing and Residence Life. Please update your plan for spring 2022; emergency arrangements will only be available under extreme circumstances.
Employees working on campus must complete the Health Attestation form and monitor their own health daily. For help accessing the form, employees may refer to the COVID-19 Attestation instructions [pdf].
The Health Attestation from is automatically routed to the appropriate Human Resources representative and employees only need to submit this form one time.
For technical issues with the form, employees may contact the UofSC IT Service Desk at 803-777-1800 or place a ticket with the Help Desk.
Staff who cannot make this affirmation are instructed to contact their supervisor. Faculty who cannot make this affirmation and who will be working on campus are instructed to contact their department chair.
Employees who are sick are to stay home and employees who exhibit symptoms of illness at the workplace are to return home.
- If an employee experiences COVID-19 symptoms, such as fever, chills, cough, loss of sense of smell or taste, headache, or sore throat, they should call UofSC’sCoronaviruss 24/7 Phone Bank at 803-576-8511 or contact their health care provider. The Phone Bank will walk them through the isolation protocol and initiate contact tracing.
- Employees should also notify Environmental, Health and Safety EHS) at 803-528-8191 so EHS can investigate and determine if this potential illness meets the OSHA’s reporting requirements for a workplace illness.
University Health services offers quick tips for appropriate actions to take if an employee has been in close contact [pdf] with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 or is experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.
Supervisors can help create a safe work environment by identifying ways to reduce points of shared contact, increase physical distancing, and encourage employees to follow the safety guidelines. Remember that not all employees have been fully vaccinated. Maintaining safety protocols in the workplace is an important step in maintaining the health and safety of all members of our campus community.
Units are encouraged to employ a broad range of solutions to address their specific circumstances including:
- Restricting non-essential visitors.
- Utilizing video or phone conferencing instead of face-to-face meetings.
- Reducing the number of workstations or staggering schedules.
- Placing plexiglass wellness screens or other barriers that would limit the connection to other workstations or in areas such as check-in stations, customer service greeting areas etc.
- Reducing the number of chairs in waiting areas.
- Reassessing flow patterns throughout the building to allow for reduced contact and discourage congregation.
- Ensuring signage to encourage physical distancing, hand washing, etc.
Promoting a Healthy Campus Workplace:
To maintain a safe on-campus work environment the university has adopted enhanced cleaning protocols, made workplace modifications, and distributed protective equipment and cleaning products. Safety guidelines have been adopted campus wide.
Supervisors need to be creative and flexible to find the right balance between operational requirements and individual concerns, drawing upon a variety of options and a broad range of resources such as:
Staggered schedules can help reduce traffic in the workplace by having employees arrive and depart at different times.
It can also provide flexibility for personnel who might need additional time in the morning or in the afternoon to cover their family responsibilities.
Some employees may benefit from modified work hours. Supervisors will need to ensure that employees working non-standard hours have opportunities to connect with other members of the team, receive clear guidance, and obtain adequate input on their work.
With supervisor approval, employees may use accrued time off for related absences (compensatory time, annual leave, or sick leave, as applicable) to cover time during which they are unable to work.
Depending on the complexity of the situation, including the requirements of the unit and the needs of the employee, a hybrid solution may be required that incorporates more than one option, for example combining an adjusted schedule with periods of leave.
In situations where all other options have been exhausted it may be necessary to place an employee on Leave Without Pay.
- The pandemic has created additional challenges for employees who have school age or pre-school children. The information on our parenting resources webpage is provided to assist employees who need to balance childcare and work.
Your HR Contact is available to assist you as you navigate the COVID-19 guidelines. If you need additional support please reach out to Human Resources.
- COVID-19 Diagnostic Testing
- COVID-19 Phone Bank: 803-576-8511
- COVID-19 Vaccine Information
- Employee Assistance Program
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Safety Guidelines
- University Health Services
- Summary of Leave Benefits
- Training Courses