Last updated: April 6, 2020 at 11:19 AM
Last updated: April 6, 2020 at 11:19 AM
Review the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines on How to Protect Yourself from COVID-19.
As researchers are learning more about coronavirus, the CDC has updated its recommendation regarding face masks. We now know that people who are asymptomatic (no signs of illness) or pre-symptomatic (haven't yet started showing signs of illness) can also transmit the virus to others. For this reason, the CDC recommends that everyone wear cloth face coverings in public settings where other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain, like the grocery store or pharmacy.
The cloth face coverings recommended are not surgical masks or N-95 respirators. Those are critical supplies that must continue to be reserved for healthcare workers and other medical first responders. People should use household items such as bandanas, scarves, towels, or t-shirts, to fashion cloth face coverings.
Visit the CDC website for instructions for how to make your own.
If you are having mild or moderate symptoms of COVID-19 (cough, fever, shortness of breath), you should stay in your room, close the door, and call the Brandeis Health Center at 781-736-3677 or after hours, 781-239-1948. The healthcare provider you speak to will assess your situation and advise you about next steps. You must call first before physically going to the Health Center.
In the meantime, you should self-isolate in your room. The Health Center can contribute masks for when you need to be in shared areas. Everyone should wash their hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before eating, when entering or exiting your living space, and after using the bathroom. When you're coughing or sneezing use a tissue, then throw it away, and wash your hands. You can also request hand sanitizer through facilities.
If you develop emergency warning signs for COVID-19, get medical attention immediately by calling Public Safety at 781-736-3333. (Any off campus students should call 911.) Emergency warning signs include*:
*This list is not all inclusive. Please consult the Health Center for any other symptoms that are severe or concerning.
If your roommate is having symptoms of COVID-19, your roommate should call the Health Center at 781-736-3677 or after hours, 781-239-1948. The Health Center will work with you and your roommate to ensure both of you are getting proper care and treatment. The Health Center will coordinate with the Department of Community Living if it is determined that you or your roommate should be moved to a different space on campus.
In the meantime, your roommate should self-isolate in his/her room. The Health Center can contribute masks for when your roommate needs to be in shared areas. Everyone should wash their hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds before eating, when entering or exiting the living space, and after using the bathroom. Anyone coughing or sneezing should use a tissue, then throw it away, and wash their hands. Students can request hand sanitizer through facilities.
When sharing space with a person who may be sick, it is important to review the best practices from the CDC.
When sharing space with a person who may be sick, it is important to review the best practices from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). If possible, maintain at least six feet of distance between people in the home.
If you are ill and have been advised to self-isolate or quarantine due to a known potential exposure risk you should stay home as directed.
Brandeis is committed to doing all we can to protect the health and safety of all our community members.
If a Brandeis community member tests positive for COVID-19, that person is interviewed by the local health department to understand who could be considered close contacts. If the infected person had close contacts in the Brandeis community, the local health department then notifies the Brandeis Health Center, who then works with Human Resources (for a staff member) or Student Affairs (for a student) staff to notify those community members who have been identified. These close contacts are then instructed to quarantine for 14 days. If you have not been contacted, that means you were not identified by public health officials as a close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
Also, Brandeis has proactively worked with its community members being tested, ahead of a positive test result, by supporting early close-contact identification and support of quarantine to reduce potential spread in our community. We ask all community members who are ill to self-isolate at home to reduce spread of the virus. Brandeis Health Center coordinates support for community members engaged in these processes.
As for issues of compensation, for anyone who may be identified as a close contact, Brandeis has already affirmed it will provide paid leave to employees who must self-quarantine or care for someone who is quarantined, above and beyond any accrued vacation or sick time.
Since the COVID-19 outbreak began, Brandeis has been notified by public health officials of four community members who have tested positive for the virus. However, with most students having moved off-campus and many faculty and staff working remotely, Brandeis will not be notified of future cases that do not involve staff or students working or living on campus.