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Protocol Regarding COVID-19

March 27, 2020

I am sending this on behalf of Health Services and the Emergency Response team.

Please note that after today we will no longer announce positive cases of COVID-19 if the individuals have not been on campus within the incubation period, which experts believe is 14 days. We are making this change as many of our faculty, staff, and students are now off campus and have been for a few weeks.

We will continue to inform the community of any positive cases of COVID-19 that may have exposed the community.

That said, today we learned that another employee has tested positive for COVID-19. This person has not been on campus during the incubation period. No further action needs to be taken at this time.

Best regards,

Patricia Bice, Ed.D.
Interim Vice President for Student Affairs and Enrollment Management

March 19, 2020

Employee Testing and Evaluation Protocols for COVID-19

We received the following guidance from the Governor’s Office today:

Effective March 16, 2020 at 12:00pm, all state agencies and authorities must abide by the following protocols for employees who report symptoms of illness associated with the COVID-19 virus. Any symptomatic employee should not report to work. As the number of suspected and confirmed cases of COVID-19 increases, all New York State employees must monitor themselves for possible symptoms, such as:

  • fever,
  • cough,
  • shortness of breath, or
  • respiratory infection/distress.

Any employee experiencing symptoms associated with COVID-19 shall immediately report symptoms to their supervisor and to Human Resources (Kathleen Farrell and Ricardo Espinales). The supervisor and Human Resources (HR) will immediately direct the employee to leave work, if they are currently at work, or stay home, if they are not at work, and self-quarantine as a precaution. The supervisor shall request and record the latest contact information for the employee, including home or mobile telephone numbers, so that HR can reach them for follow up information. If the employee is experiencing severe symptoms and requires urgent medical attention, the supervisor should call 911 and notify the dispatcher that the distressed employee may have COVID-19 symptoms, so that emergency medical service responders may use appropriate precautions.

Facilities will be notified so that the area(s) the individual worked in can be cleaned and disinfected.

HR will get in touch with the employee via the information provided to the supervisor in order to:

  1. inquire about current symptoms,
  2. verify that they have precautionarily quarantined, and
  3. direct the employee to call a health care provider and seek testing. The employee should first contact their primary health care practitioner to see if they are available and able to collect a sample for testing. If not, the employee should contact the New York State COVID- 19 hotline at 1-888-364-3065 to be referred to a regional testing site that can collect and submit a sample for testing. The employee must notify HR of the test results as soon as they are received. Test results will be verified by the New York State Department of Health (DOH),
  4. inquire about their potential contact and interactions with other employees and students at the college.

Based on the information received the college will proceed in accordance with the additional guidance from the Governor’s office. Thank you for your cooperation during this difficult time.

March 13, 2020

Reporting and Identification of Exposure and Symptoms

As we continue to monitor information about the COVID-19 virus in our area, we wanted to update the community about how to identify symptoms, what to do should you believe you have been exposed to the virus, and what steps the college will take if there is a confirmed case on campus.

How Do I Identify Symptoms?

If you are sick with symptoms of fever, cough, and breathing difficulties, students should call Health Services at (914) 251-7925 for advice and a possible appointment.

What To Do

If you suspect you have been exposed to someone who has symptoms or you were exposed to someone who has been confirmed to have the coronavirus, please call Health Services at (914) 251-7925 for advice.

College Updates and Reporting

The college will communicate to the campus community if a member of the community has been tested and received confirmation of a positive diagnosis of the coronavirus. Purchase College administration will follow the instructions and guidance from the Department of Health on next steps for the community.