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Division of Human Resources

Return to the Workplace

As UofSC returns employees to the workplace, the Division of Human Resources will update this page with tips, resources, and strategies to help departments and employees adapt to a changing environment.

Required Training

Before returning to work, employees must watch the following videos and read how to wear and take off face coverings, and guidelines for returning to the workplace.

 

Information for Employees

Resources to help you transition back to working safely on campus or to continue working productively from home. 

 

Information for Supervisors

Tools to help you as you support your employees no matter where they are working, on campus or from home. 

 

Information for HR Contacts

Access Return-to-Work notice templates, information about deployment teams, webinar information and FAQs.

 

Return-to-Work Plan

In June, the university began implementing a phased plan for the gradual expansion of on-campus operations throughout the summer and into the academic year. Phase 1 was June 1-21 and Phase 2 was June 22-July 13 and Phase 3 was July 14-Aug. 3.  Phase 4 covers the 2020 academic year.

 

Guidelines for Returning to the Workplace

The university has modified its operations to protect the health and well-being of our campus community. Compliance with these guidelines is critical in mitigating the risks associated with COVID-19.

 

Face Coverings

The university requires face coverings to be worn at all times inside all campus buildings – except when alone in a private office or when eating. All individuals on campus in outdoor areas are expected to wear a face covering whenever physical distancing (six feet or more) is difficult or the risk of infection is high.

 

Reporting a potential workplace COVID-19 illness

  • First, call the university’s COVID-19 hotline at 803-576-8511 to notify the university that you have tested positive for COVID-19 so they can walk you through the isolation protocol and do contact tracing.
  • Then, notify Environmental, Health and Safety (EHS) at 803-528-8191 to provide information why you believe your illness could be a potential workplace illness so EHS can investigate and determine if this potential illness meets OSHA’s reporting requirements.

 

Diagnostic Testing

COVID-19 diagnostic testing is highly recommended and tests are available through Student Health Services and other community locations.   

 

Daily Health Screening 

Employees working on campus must complete the Health Attestation form and monitor their own health daily. For help accessing the form, please refer to the COVID-19 Attestation instructions.

Employees are expected to monitor their own health on a daily basis and take appropriate actions if they are not feeling well, including not coming to work if they are sick and following up with their health care provider or calling the  UofSC's Coronavirus Phone Bank (803-576-8511) if they are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19.  

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 eform, please contact the UofSC IT Service Desk at 803-777-1800 or place a ticket with the Help Desk.

Staff who cannot make this affirmation should contact their supervisor. Faculty who cannot make this affirmation and who will be working on campus should contact their department chair.

 

Frequently Asked Questions

Face coverings are required in the workplace. Face coverings must be worn at all times when inside all campus buildings, unless you are alone in a private office or are eating.

Policy UNIV 3.04 Communicable Disease Outbreak Mitigation Measures [pdf] includes specific directives concerning the need for and use of face coverings on campus.

The university also follows all directives of the State of South Carolina and the City of Columbia. 

The State of South Carolina requires face coverings in all government offices, buildings, and facilities in accordance with guidelines and procedures developed by the South Carolina Department of Administration.

The City of Columbia enacted a face covering ordinance which requires a face covering while in public or while interacting with the public. The city has provided additional information on the ordinance in their FAQ.

A private office is an enclosed space with a single occupant.  

A cubical may be considered a private office if the cubical walls are high enough to provide a physical barrier that blocks respiratory particles under normal circumstances. For example, a reception desk with a high counter would not be a private cubical since a normal interaction involves someone speaking over the counter. (Other protective equipment such as a wellness screen might mitigate this risk, but unless the space is enclosed it is not a private office.)

Per the guidelines from the state, you should wear a face covering whenever you are interacting with another person. 

Even though there may be six feet or more between you and the person in your doorway, be aware that during a conversation you may unexpectedly cough or sneeze, which could put them at risk.

If you are not at least 6 feet from the doorway, you might need to also keep your door partially or fully closed, particularly if you are in an area with substantial foot traffic.

Unless there are physical barriers between workspaces that can effectively block respiratory droplets under normal working conditions, you and your coworkers should each be wearing a face covering.

The university will provide one (1) reusable/washable face covering for each employee.

If you have a health condition that makes wearing a face covering difficult you are encouraged to talk with your direct supervisor about accommodations. 

Your supervisor may ask you for documentation from your heath care provider. The documentation does not need to provide specific information about your health condition, but will need to confirm that there is a medical reason you cannot safely wear a face covering.

No. Employees are expected to self-monitor their temperature and overall health daily.

Some areas on campus, such as the Student Health Center, are taking daily temperatures.

When you submitted the online form your  Health Attestation is automatically routed to the appropriate Human Resources representative.   

No.  Once you have completed your  Health Attestation form you no longer need to complete a daily screening form.  

You are still expected to monitor your own health every day and not report to work if you are sick.  

If you are sick contact your supervisor.  If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 contact your health care provider or call the  UofSC's Coronavirus Phone Bank (803-576-8511) 

No. Employees who are working remotely do not need to submit the  Health Attestation form until they return to work on campus.  However, all employees are encouraged to monitor their own health daily and take appropriate actions if they experience symptoms consistent with COVID-19 or believe they have been exposed to the virus.  

To protect the health and well-being of the campus community, getting a COVID-19 diagnostic test before you return to campus is strongly encouraged by the university. If you are not able to obtain a test before you return to campus, you should obtain a test as soon as possible upon your return.

Information about on campus testing is available through Student Health Services.

When possible please schedule testing 7 to 10 days prior to the 1st day you return to work.

The university encourages employees who are not experiencing symptoms of COVID-19 to obtain a COVID-19 SAFE test a minimum of once every 30 days.  Participation in the testing program is voluntary and tests are offered at no cost to employees.

 If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 contact your health care provider or call the  UofSC's Coronavirus Phone Bank (803-576-8511) and follow their direction regarding testing.

Yes. Testing will be available through Student Health Services.

The State Health Plan adheres to the testing guidelines set forth by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). 

More information about which tests are currently covered is available from PEBA.

Use of restrooms should be limited based on size to ensure at least 6 feet distance between individuals.

Wash your hands thoroughly afterward to reduce the potential transmission of the virus.

Convening in groups increases the risk of viral transmission. Where feasible, meetings should be held in whole or part using the extensive range of available collaboration tools. For example, Zoom, WebEx, Microsoft Teams, or telephone.

Identify and close areas where personnel are likely to congregate and interact or enforce strict social distancing protocols.

Yes, we suggest limiting walk-ins and schedule appointments for customers when possible.

As with most communicable diseases, common hygiene practices are the best way to mitigate the spread of germs. 

  • Cover mouth and nose when you sneeze or cough
  • Wash hands often for 20 seconds
  • Clean shared surfaces and equipment often
  • Avoid touching eye, nose and mouth
  • Stay home if sick and call your doctor if needed

The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has many videos and information on how to protect yourself and others from COVID-19. You can find some videos here.

 

 

This information is subject to change.


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