COVID-19 Resources

The university remains vigilant and proactive with our response to the coronavirus pandemic. Our primary goal is to keep our community healthy and safe. The university has developed a safety plan to protect students and employees as we return to on-campus instruction. Note that plan components may change as requirements and recommendations evolve.

Stay home if you are sick, even if the symptoms don’t appear to be COVID-19.

  • Students who miss class due to illness should reach out to their instructors to make a plan for missed coursework.
  • Students who miss clinic shifts should request ID days using the normal process. 
  • Employees should contact their supervisor.

This page is updated regularly but please check your UWS email for future actions and recommendations from the university.


UPDATE: JANUARY 4, 2022
The CDC updated their recommended time for isolation on 12/27/21 and UWS subsequently updated its protocols to match. People with COVID-19 should isolate for 5 days and if they are asymptomatic or their symptoms are resolving (without fever for 24 hours), follow that by 5 days of wearing a mask when around others to minimize the risk of infecting people they encounter.
Read more here.

UPDATE: MARCH 12, 2022
Governor Kate Brown announced that under the advisement of the Oregon Health Authority, the state would be lifting the mask mandate for indoor public spaces on March 12, 2022.

In accordance with this change, UWS will no longer require masks for students, staff, faculty and visitors in some campus areas beginning March 12, 2022. These areas include all common areas, private offices and lecture classrooms. Masks will still be required within all hands-on laboratories and the UWS clinic.

COVID-19 SAFETY PLAN

COVID-19 REPORT FORM

On-campus students and employees should use the COVID-19 Report Form if they have COVID-19 symptoms; close contact with a person with a COVID-19 infection; or a positive test result. The information collected in this form is kept confidential and only shared with key UWS officials.

POSITIVE TEST RESULT FOR COVID-19

UWS protocols require that an individual who tests positive for COVID-19 self-isolate at home for 5 days and wear a mask for an additional 5 days when around others. Prior to returning to campus, UWS protocols require that:

  • You have completed your 5-day isolation period;
  • You are fever-free for at least 24-hours without the use of fever-reducing medicines;
  • You are free of uncontrollable cough; AND
  • Your other symptoms are improving.

You do not need to get another test before returning as long as you meet these requirements.

CLOSE CONTACT WITH A PERSON WHO HAS TESTED POSITIVE FOR COVID-19

University protocols require that you wear a face covering for 10 days following the exposure when around others and monitor yourself for symptoms. Testing on day 5 after the exposure is also recommended. You do not need to quarantine off campus unless you develop symptoms or have a positive test result. If you develop symptoms or have a positive test result, please make another report using the online report form.

What does “close contact” mean? Close contact is the term used when a person has been near another person with a COVID-19 infection during the potentially contagious period of the infection and may be at risk of contracting COVID-19. UWS follows the Center for Disease Control (CDC) definition for a close contact, which means that an individual has been within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period.

SYMPTOMS THAT COULD BE RELATED TO COVID-19

Due to the presence of these symptoms, university protocols require that you remain off-campus to self-quarantine until one of the three following conditions is met:

  • You have self-quarantined for 5 days from the date of symptom-onset and your symptoms have resolved; or
  • You have authorization from your health care provider to return to campus without a COVID-19 test and your symptoms have resolved; or
  • You have received a negative COVID-19 test result and your symptoms have resolved.

In all cases, prior to return to campus, you must:

  • Be fever-free without the use of fever-reducing medicines for at least 24 hours;
  • Be free from uncontrollable cough; AND
  • Other symptoms should also be improving.

When you return to campus, please wear a mask for an additional five (5) days when around others. We encourage you to contact your health care provider to discuss your symptoms and COVID-19 testing. If you test positive, please make another report using the online report form.

PROOF OF VACCINATION IN HEALTH CARE SETTINGS

University of Western States complies with laws and regulations related to public health and the provision of health care services including the Oregon Health Authority’s administrative rule OAR 333-019-1010. In compliance with this rule, UWS is required to collect information about COVID vaccination status for any individual who works, learns, studies, assists, observes or volunteers in the UWS Health Center, Connected Whole Health or an Oregon-based CBI site. This information includes proof of COVID-19 vaccination, or documentation of a medical or religious exception. UWS is also complying with the emergency temporary standard (ETS) issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) which requires proof of vaccination or request for testing for any employees who work on campus effective January 9, 2022. Read more about the standard here. The CDC definition of a fully vaccinated individual is either 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines, or 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine. The CDC also recommends a booster shot at 5 months after the completion of the primary series of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or 2 months after the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. The booster recommendation has not changed the definition of a fully vaccinated individual. For additional information, please review the current CDC recommendations.

MASKS/GLOVES REQUIRED IN CAMPUS LABS AND CLINIC

On-Campus Labs

In alignment with state requirements for clinical care, face coverings in on-campus labs and in-person encounters with standardized patients are required. As state requirements for clinical spaces are updated, these protocols will be reassessed.

Clinic

Anyone working in the clinic will be asked to follow specific health and safety protocols when engaging in patient care. As part of these protocols, personal protective equipment (PPE) including face coverings (at all times) and gloves (only in certain circumstances) are required when interacting with patients and providing certain treatments. Interns will be trained on such protocols upon entering the clinic. All PPE used in these protocols will be provided by the university. These required protocols will change as regulations are updated.

TESTING AND VACCINE INFORMATION

The university does not conduct testing on-site, nor does it provide vaccinations. Individuals should contact their health care provider or the Multnomah County Health Department or the Washington State Department of Health for current testing and vaccination information.

STUDENT LOAN AND HIGHER EDUCATION EMERGENCY RELIEF INFORMATION

All U.S. federally held student loan payments are paused effective March 13, 2020. The student loan payment pause will be in effected until the U.S. Department of Education is permitted to implement the debt relief program or the litigation is resolved. Payments will restart 60 days later. If the debt relief program has not been implemented and the litigation has not been resolved by June 30, 2023 — payments will resume 60 days after that. The department of education will notify borrowers before payments restart. For additional information please visit COVID-19 Emergency Relief and Federal Student Aid | Federal Student Aid.

Students with private student loans will need to check with individual lenders to see if any relief is available. For additional student loan questions, please contact UWS financial aid

Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF):  UWS originally received Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (HEERF) under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act in the spring of 2020. Those funds were supplemented by emergency relief from the Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations (CRRSA) Act and the American Rescue Plan (ARP) Act in the spring of 2021. Higher Education Emergency Relief funds (HEERF) were allocated amongst the institutions and the students they serve. The student portion of the funding was intended to provide emergency grants to students for COVID-related expenses, including food, housing, course materials, technology, health care and childcare.

The goal of UWS is to utilize the student portion of HEERF to assist as many students as possible in meeting their emergency financial needs during this challenging time. Please contact the office of financial aid at [email protected] with any questions.

HEERF Combined Student and Institutional Quarterly Reporting

HEERF Reports – Student Fund

HEERF Reports – Institutional Fund

NBCE and CCEB EXAMINATIONS

For specific information regarding NBCE protocols, please contact NBCE. Please visit the NBCE website for updates.

Please refer to the CCEB website for additional information about exam administration.

TRAVEL AND HEALTH INSURANCE

UWS has done some preliminary research and discovered several insurance options that appear to include travel and COVID-19 related coverage. The university suggests working with a broker to identify the carrier and plan that meets your needs. Two brokers that appear to carry appropriate plans are Insubuy and American Visitor Insurance.

Note that not every plan carried by these brokers includes COVID-19-related coverage. Both brokers have information specific to COVID-19 on their websites. UWS does not recommend any particular broker, carrier or plan. Students are responsible for identifying and selecting the plan that best suits their needs.

UWS recommends requesting a written summary of COVID-19 related coverage and restrictions for any plan a student selects.

EMPLOYEES

If you have questions about working remotely, specific health conditions, insurance access and coverage, eligibility for sick leave or other benefits, accommodations, concerns about the health and wellbeing of other employees, or any other questions related to COVID-19 employee policies, please contact human resources.