Prevention

We can all help reduce the likelihood of spreading COVID-19. Learn more about university and individual actions to prevent illness.

What You Need to Know

Help Prevent the Spread of COVID-19

Image Icon of a mask
Wear a Mask
Image Icon of two people six people apart
Maintain Physical Distance
Image Icon of hand washing
Wash Your Hands
Image Icon of someone with a fever
Check Your Symptoms and
Stay Home if You're Sick

Lowering the Risk of COVID-19

The more actions you take will reduce the risk of a COVID-19 outbreak on campus. The university and departments are also taking action to reduce the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of our community.

Face Coverings

Face coverings can help reduce the spread of COVID-19. See below for information on UO face-covering requirements and other information related to wearing face coverings on university property.

Vaccination

Getting vaccinated is the single best way to prevent serious illness from COVID-19. Vaccinations are available at health care providers, pharmacies and public health agencies.

Personal Hygiene

The university has deployed a number of hand washing stations across campus. Branded signage for hand washing, staying home if ill, maintaining six feet of distance, face-covering requirements, and floor stickers to mark distancing where lines form. 

Personal Screening

Every day before coming to campus, employees and students should conduct a symptom self-check.

Anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, that are different from their baseline, should stay home until 24 hours after the fever (if present) is gone without the aid of medication and all other symptoms have been relieved.

Testing

If you develop COVID-19 symptoms, have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or have recently traveled from an area with widespread or ongoing community spread of COVID-19, call your health care provider before going in person.

Tell them about your recent travel or contact. They will work with the local or state public health departments to determine if you need to be tested for COVID-19.

Quarantine and Isolation
  • Isolation separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.
  • Quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.

According to the CDC, both strategies are used to limit the spread of communicable disease.

Persons in isolation or quarantine should restrict activities outside their residence, except for getting medical care, for the period they are at risk of secondary transmission.

If you are in isolation or quarantine, do not go to work, school, or public areas, and avoid using public transportation, ridesharing, or taxis.

Face-Covering Information

Updated November 23, 2021

 

How to Wear Your Mask

Every mask worn on campus makes us all a little safer. Are you doing it right? Here’s how Ducks mask up for each other:

Proper Use:

  • A face covering is required to cover the nose and mouth, and rest snugly against the face. Masks with exhaust valves are not considered face coverings.
  • For cloth masks, it is recommended that you ensure the mask blocks light from coming through the fabric if held up to a bright light source.

Exemptions

  • When an employee has a disability or a serious medical condition that prevents them from putting on, taking off, or wearing any face covering they should consult with their supervisor. Supervisors will be given guidance from Human Resources on how to respond to employees who raise concerns about wearing a mask at work, strategies for brainstorming solutions that address individual and community health concerns, and when to consult with the ADA coordinator.
  • When a student has a disability or serious medical condition that prevents them from putting on, taking off, or wearing any face covering, they should consult with the Accessible Education Center.
  • To comply with documented industry best practices for a specific position, or by law or regulation (e.g., health care facilities, child care facilities, restaurants, gyms).
  • A fully vaccinated instructor who is at least 6 feet away from an audience can remove their mask when all others in the room are masked.
  • While eating or drinking.
  • Within University Housing:
    • In a student’s own residence hall room or family housing unit.
    • In shared residence hall restrooms.
  • Individuals under the age of five.
  • Additional exemptions may be requested on a case by case basis by contacting Environmental Health & Safety.
  • If required by applicable OHA public health guidance.
  • An individual can be videotaped without a face covering if the following conditions are met:
    • The individual being taped is fully vaccinated.
    • The individual is at least 6 feet from others in the room.
    • All others in the room wear face coverings.
  • While outside.

Enforcement

  • The university will post signage clearly stating face covering requirements, including access to services for faculty, staff, and students.
  • It is prohibited for any individual to be denied or restricted access or participation based on not wearing a face covering, if the individual meets an exemption to this regulation.
  • Enforcement procedures for employees will comply with UO policies and procedures and applicable collective bargaining agreements.
  • The Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards is responsible for developing and implementing enforcement procedures for students.
  • If you come across someone you believe might not be properly following the university's COVID-19 safety regulations (e.g., face coverings, physical distancing, etc.), use our behavioral concern reporting form to let us know and we can follow up on it.

Additional Information

  • Face Shields: Use of a face shield alone is not recommended, and should be done only on a limited basis such as when talking to someone who is deaf or hard of hearing and needs to read lips to communicate or where wearing a mask is not feasible. Wearing a face shield alone without a mask or face covering increases the potential for transmission of viruses to those in the same room as the individual without the mask or face covering.
  • These requirements will and may be amended if regulatory conditions change or guidance from health authorities evolves. This may include local or state-level laws or guidance related to business practices (e.g., food service, childcare, etc.). Changes to safety requirements will comply with the policy.

  • It is the responsibility of the individual to handle and launder their face coverings following public health guidelines.

  • Individuals who engage in harassing, discriminatory, bullying, or retaliatory behavior towards others because they are or are not wearing a face covering may be subject to investigation and sanction under other applicable UO policies.

  • The university has established a point of contact for members of the campus community to report concerns about people not complying with this safety regulation. Employees can also raise concerns with their supervisors. Enforcement will focus on education first.

5 Keys to Healthy Hand Washing

In the fight against COVID-19, clean hands are critical. The university has deployed a number of hand washing stations across campus.

Image Soap icon
Use clean running water and soap
Image Icon of washing your hands
Lather and scrub for at least 20 seconds
Image Finger icon
Don’t forget BBU: backs of hands, between fingers, and under nails
Image Icon of hands being rinsed
Rinse well under clean running water
Image Icon of hand pulling down a paper towel
Use a fresh paper towel or LEt Them Air Dry

 

If You Start Feeling Sick, Stay Home.

If you have any of these symptoms, please leave campus and contact your health care provider immediately.

The COVID-19 symptom self-check tool is now available on the University of Oregon mobile app. Download the app from the iTunes store or Google Play to access the symptom checker, campus map, and additional COVID-19 resources.

Image Icon of someone with a fever
Fever or chills
Image Icon of someone with a cough
Cough, Sore Throat, Difficulty Breathing
Image Icon of someone with muscle pain
Muscle Pain, BODY ACHES, FATIGUE
Image Icon of someone who has lost their sense of taste
Recent loss of taste or smell

 

Symptom Self-Check Information

Symptom Self-Check Procedures

Use the Symptom Self-Check Tool

Every day before coming to campus, employees and students should conduct a symptom self-check. Anyone experiencing COVID-19 symptoms that are different from their baseline, should stay home until 24 hours after the fever (if present) is gone without the aid of medication and all other symptoms have been relieved.

If a student or employee develops COVID-19 symptoms or has been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 they should contact their health care provider to determine if and where they should be tested for COVID-19. Students can also contact University Health Services at 541-346-2770.

The university will not collect health information from its employees or students under this requirement.

Recording Procedures and Enforcement

Employees and students do not need to submit their symptom self-checks to the university but they should record that it was completed in their personal notes. The symptom self-check tool can be used for recording purposes so that they can verify they completed the check upon request.

There is no expectation of supervisors to check in daily on whether or not staff completed their daily symptom check. However, if a supervisor has any reason to believe that an employee has not performed their daily symptom check they should contact UO Employee and Labor Relations to assist in determining how best to respond.

Prevention FAQs

COVID-19 Symptoms and Response

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

Patients with COVID-19 have reported mild to severe respiratory illness with symptoms including fever, cough, shortness of breath, and new loss of smell or taste. Symptoms may appear 2–14 days after exposure.

Information suggests that older people and those with certain underlying health conditions like heart disease, lung disease, and diabetes, seem to be at greater risk of serious illness.

For more information, consult the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention [en Español] or contact your local health practitioner.

How does COVID-19 spread?

COVID-19 is thought to spread mainly from person-to-person. This includes being within approximately six feet of an individual with COVID-19 for a prolonged period of time, and through respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs or sneezes.

It may also be possible that a person can get COVID-19 by touching a surface or object that has the virus on it, then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes.

What should I do if I suspect I have COVID-19?

If you develop COVID-19 symptoms or have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 call your health care provider to determine if and where you should be tested for COVID-19.

Students and employees who have tested positive, develop COVID-19 symptoms, have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 or think they have been exposed to COVID-19 are encouraged to review the COVID-19 exposure scenarios and guidance and complete the case and contact form for additional guidance and resources.

If a student has mild viral symptoms and does not need a medical evaluation they can pick up a COVID-19 self-directed test kit through University Health Services. No appointments are needed to pick up these kits. For current hours visit University Health Services webpage. If a student has viral symptoms and is unsure whether they need a medical evaluation, they should contact University Health Services at 541-346-2770 or their health care provider to determine if and where they should to be tested.

Individuals who wish to monitor themselves for symptoms can use the symptom self-check. If you are sick, follow all CDC guidelines [en Español] to prevent the disease from spreading to people in your home and community.

Do people who have been fully vaccinated or who have tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 90 days still need to quarantine if they come in contact with a confirmed or presumptive COVID-19 case?

Individuals in those two situations may not need to quarantine unless they are symptomatic. They must continue to monitor themselves for symptoms of COVID-19 and stay home if they develop any.

If you find yourself in one of these situations, please confirm with the health department or your health care provider whether you should quarantine. Note that to be considered fully vaccinated at least two weeks must have passed since you received all recommended doses of a COVID-19 vaccine (the number of does varies by manufacturer).

Should I stay away from campus if I develop COVID-19 symptoms following a dose of vaccine?

Many people experience some sort of reaction to the vaccine after it’s administered. Some symptoms – specifically fever, fatigue, headache, chills, muscle or joint ache – can be linked to both the vaccine and the COVID-19 virus itself. However, other symptoms – specifically cough, shortness of breath and/or loss of taste or smell – are primarily linked to the virus. For detailed instructions, please see the post-vaccination scenarios on our COVID-19 Exposure Scenarios and Guidance webpage.

What does it mean to be a close contact?

The Oregon Health Authority (OHA) defines a close contact as someone who has been within six feet of a COVID-19 case for at least 15 cumulative minutes during their contagious period.

This is an update to the initial definition, emphasizing that exposure can be cumulative, through a series of shorter-duration exposures, and does not have to be 15 consecutive minutes.

Close contact can include caring for, living with, visiting, or sitting within six feet of a confirmed COVID-19 patient for a cumulative 15 minutes or having direct contact with infectious secretions of a COVID-19 case (e.g., being coughed on).

REMEMBER to stay at least six feet away from people outside your household, even for short conversations. And wear your masks.

When are isolation or quarantine used?

  • Isolation separates sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.
  • Quarantine separates and restricts the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.

According to the CDC, both of these strategies are used to limit the spread of communicable disease.

Persons in isolation or quarantine should restrict activities outside their residence, except for getting medical care, for the period of time they are at risk of secondary transmission. If you are in isolation or quarantine, do not go to work, school, or public areas, and avoid using public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis.

If someone around you has been placed in isolation or quarantine, this does not necessarily mean they have contracted COVID-19. They may simply be awaiting test results. Persons who have completed quarantine or have been released from isolation do not pose a risk of infection to other people. More information about isolation and quarantine can be found on the Case Management web page.


Prevention

What can I do to avoid getting sick?

Vaccination remains your best protection from contracting, spreading, and becoming seriously ill from COVID-19 and variants. You can get vaccinated through your health care provider, pharmacy, or county health department.

The best way to prevent the spread of respiratory illnesses, including COVID-19 and influenza, is to avoid exposure to the virus.

Take the CDC-recommended precautions [en Español] to reduce your risk of exposure, including:

The university has deployed a number of handwashing stations across campus.

Are masks required on campus?

Face coverings are required indoors in all UO facilities regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are not required outdoors. Face coverings can also be removed while eating or drinking. Face coverings must fully cover the nose and mouth. Mesh masks, lace masks, and other face coverings with openings, valves, holes, vents, or other visible gaps in the design or material are not in compliance with this policy.

See the COVID-19 regulations page for additional guidance and requirements.

I have a health condition that may put me at higher risk from COVID-19. Is there anything I should do to protect myself?

The university recommends community members with specific health concerns contact their health care provider for medical advice tailored to their individual situations.

See frequently asked questions on human resources and employment and academics, classes and study abroad for information on leave, distance learning, and work-from-home options.


Cleaning and Safety Precautions

Are there special cleaning products or procedures being employed across campus?

The UO is following cleaning guidelines and protocols recommended by the CDC, the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and Oregon OSHA. Additional attention is being given to high touch areas such as door handles, handrails, and push bars on doors across campus.

The university has also deployed a number of hand washing stations across campus.

How should I clean my workspace?

The CDC and University Health Services recommend people routinely clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces (e.g., keyboards, cell phones, doorknobs, desks, light switches, handles, faucets). When cleaning, wear disposable gloves and appropriate skin and eye protection, ensure good ventilation, use soap and water to wash surfaces and follow with a disinfectant.

For a disinfectant, consult the CDC list of disinfectants for use against COVID-19. An EPA-registered disinfectant or 10 percent bleach solution [en Español] will be most effective. These cleaning and disinfectant products are readily available through mail order or local supermarkets and stores that stock basic home cleaning products.

See the CDC guidelines for specific instructions on how to clean soft surfaces and electronics.

What are you doing about ventilation in campus buildings?

Due to the variability of systems on campus, there is no one-size-fits-all approach. We are implementing a comprehensive strategy that includes maximizing air exchange rates and reducing the re-entrainment (transfer from exhaust air to supply air) of contaminants.

This strategy includes assessing and optimizing the following elements, depending on system capabilities:

  • Airflow
  • Filtration
  • In-stream and targeted technologies
  • Maintaining temperature and relative humidity within the comfort zone to the extent possible.

If you have questions about the HVAC systems and mitigation efforts in your building, contact your building manager or at workcontrolcenter@uoregon.edu.

What measures are in place to ensure water quality in campus buildings during the long periods of vacancy?

Campus Planning and Facilities Management (CPFM) and Auxiliary Departments are maintaining staff presence within most of our buildings. Flushing of water systems has been added to their daily work. This helps keep our main supply piping clear and disinfected.

As we get closer to a return to occupied buildings on campus, these efforts will increase and will be bolstered by more concerted flushing efforts.


Classrooms

Are face coverings required in classrooms?

Yes. Face coverings are to be worn while attending in-person classes at all times.

Can an instructor teach in-person classes without a mask if they can maintain at least 6 feet of distance from the students?

Yes, a fully vaccinated instructor who is at least 6 feet away from an audience can remove their mask when all others in the room are masked. If the room cannot accommodate 6 feet distancing between an unmasked instructor and students, then the instructor must remain masked.

How can faculty ensure that students wear face coverings in the classroom?

The best way for faculty to ensure that students wear face coverings and follow the other safety regulations (self-checks, hand washing, etc.) is by including a section of expectations in the course syllabus, talking about the requirements, modeling positive behavior, and engaging in conversations about why the regulations are important.

Faculty members are not tasked with enforcing face covering regulations. There are trained UO employees in the Accessible Education Center who are familiar with the disability accommodation process and in the Office of the Dean of Students to address matters of student conduct.

What should I do if a student is not wearing a face covering?

Remember these three steps:

  • Remind
  • Ask
  • Provide resources

From a safe distance (more than six feet), remind the student that UO policy requires campus community members to wear face coverings. Then ask the student to put on a face covering. If they do not have a face covering, provide one from the supply of masks that have been stocked in all classrooms that will have in-person instruction.

Students unable to wear face coverings can work with the Accessible Education Center to find a reasonable accommodation.

What if a student says they cannot wear a face covering due to a medical condition or disability?

f a student says they cannot wear a face covering due to a medical condition or disability, ask to see their letter of notification from the Accessible Education Center (AEC). If the student does not have a letter of notification from AEC, let them know that the Accessible Education Center has staff that can assist them in exploring reasonable accommodations.

Inform the student that until they provide a letter of notification from AEC verifying an approved accommodation, they will need to wear a mask or leave class.

Due to student privacy rights, the Accessible Education Center may not provide you details about students' disabilities but they will provide a letter of notification detailing any approved accommodations.

What if a student refuses to put on a face covering?

After going through the steps outlined above – remind, ask, and provide resources – students who refuse to wear a face covering should be referred to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards.

The Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards can pursue action against students who violate university policy.

If a student refuses to put on a face covering in violation of university rules, you may ask a student to leave. You may also cancel the class and provide make-up opportunities as appropriate.

What should I do if a student refuses to leave the class?

You are not tasked with enforcing the university face covering regulation. There are trained UO employees who are familiar with the disability accommodation process and the student conduct process.

If a student refuses to leave the class after being asked, the instructor should notify the student that they are in violation of university policy and will be reported to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards if they refuse to comply with the university policy.

If the student continues to refuse to leave, class may be canceled for the day and make-up options provided.

Where can I report a concern if a student is not wearing a face covering?

Concerns can be reported to the Office of the Dean of Students by filling out the COVID-19 behavioral concern reporting form. To report students needing a reasonable accommodation, contact the Accessible Education Center.


Behavior Expectations

How is the University of Oregon encouraging and helping UO students to follow state orders and university rules to reduce the spread of COVID-19?

UO students are expected to follow all university rules and state orders to reduce the spread of COVID-19. This includes wearing face coverings, physical distancing, washing hands, not gathering in in medium-sized or large groups, and conducting a daily symptom self-check before leaving home. Every student has been notified about these expectations directly via email and through extensive, proactive informational campaigns.

One of those campaigns asks the university community to take the Duck pledge to care for themselves and others. Students, faculty, and staff can take the pledge and commit to protecting our campus and our local community.

For students living on and off-campus in Eugene, the UO is providing information about access to COVID-19 testing though Monitoring and Assessment Program (MAP) and University Health Services on the UO campus. The UO’s Corona Corps Care Team is also helping students living off campus who need to isolate or quarantine access negotiated-rate hotel rooms, food delivery, and financial support.

The Office of the Dean of Students is meeting proactively with leaders of sororities and fraternities, religious directors, and local property managers to make expectations and consequences clear, provide resources and to help identify isolation and quarantine spaces in their facilities or otherwise help and inform residents.

To help keep the community informed, the UO provides a COVID-19 Safety Dashboard that is updated weekly with vaccination rates of all UO students and employees and information about positive and presumptive COVID-19 cases among students living on and off-campus and any employees who have been on campus during their period of transmissibility.

How is the university enforcing its regulations and behavior expectations?

Not complying with UO safety regulations, which are university policy, can be reported to the Office of Student Conduct and Community Standards and are pursuant to the student code of conduct violation process.

While our conduct process is always educational in approach, we also understand the need to hold students accountable. Students who violate state law and university policy, even while off-campus, are subject to the student conduct code. Consequences of violating the code may include educational sanctions, disciplinary probation or suspension depending on the egregiousness of the behavior.

Concerns about behavior not following university COVID-19 safety regulations can be reported through the COVID-19 behavioral concern reporting form.

The UO Police Department also periodically partners with Eugene Police for enhanced “party patrols” to monitor social gatherings in the neighborhoods near campus.