Health & Safety

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Daily Health Screenings

All students and employees coming to a UAlbany campus for any reason must monitor their symptoms and stay home if they are sick. Review a list of possible COVID-19 symptoms on the CDC website.

Are you a visitor? Please go to our Visitors & Events page for instructions. 
 

Symptoms
Instructions for Students

Students who live off campus must complete a Daily Student Health Screening within the hour before they arrive on campus. 

Students who live in on-campus housing must complete a Daily Student Health Screening within the hour before they leave their room, suite or apartment. 

The screening does not need to be completed more than once per day. 

If a student fails the screening, they must follow the screening’s directive to stay home, self-quarantine and contact a medical professional. 

If you are or become symptomatic, please self-isolate until you consult with a medical provider, such as Student Health Services

Instructions for Employees 

Employees must complete a Daily Employee Health Screening each day they plan on coming to campus, before or within one hour of reporting to work. 

You must be free of any symptoms potentially related to COVID-19, or have been evaluated and cleared by your health care provider and HR, to be eligible to report to work.  

If you are symptomatic:  

  • Do not report to work. Or leave work, if you’re already on site.   
     

  • Immediately call HR's Medical Reporting Hotline at 518-442-1501, and leave your name and contact information. An HR staff member will contact you with instructions. 
     

  • Contact your supervisor and follow normal call-in procedures. Your supervisor must keep any health-related information confidential and can only discuss the information with HR.  
     

  • Contact your personal physician. Call 911 in distress.

Surveillance & Diagnostic Testing 

The University has implemented a comprehensive and ongoing pooled surveillance testing program. Anyone who receives a presumptive positive surveillance test result will be promptly referred for diagnostic testing and given instructions to isolate pending results. 

Students have access to diagnostic testing on campus. Please visit the Student Health Services website to make an appointment. 

Anyone can make an appointment at the New York State drive-thru diagnostic testing site located on UAlbany’s Uptown Campus by calling 1-888-364-3065

 

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Contact Tracing 

The University’s twelve-person Contact Support Team are all trained at or above the Bloomberg Contract Tracing standard. They work closely with county and state health officials to support contact tracing efforts.  

Additionally, our Student Support Team reaches out and supports any students in on-campus isolation and quarantine housing.  

If an exposure occurs, the Albany County Department of Health will contact affected individuals and the University’s Contact Support Team. 

If a health department official calls you, your caller ID will say “NYS Contact Tracing” (518-387-9993). Please also look for the caller ID "UNIV Albany" or an email from [email protected]

 

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Reporting Positive Test Results 

If you receive a positive diagnostic test result, you must inform the University. 
 

results
Instructions for Students
  1. Upload your test result and county health documentation (such as health orders or health releases) into the Student COVID Documentation Portal
     

  2. Email [email protected] to notify the University.  
     

  3. Read the quarantine and isolation rules below.

Instructions for Employees
  1. Any employee who exhibits COVID-19 symptoms or receives a positive test result must call HR's Medical Reporting Hotline at 518-442-1501. Leave your name and contact information, and an HR staff member will be in contact with instructions. 
     

  2. Follow HR's instructions for submitting your test result and county health documentation (such as health orders or health releases). 
     

  3. Read the quarantine and isolation rules below. 
     

If a student tells you they have received a positive diagnostic test result, please ask them to complete the "Instructions for Students" listed above. If the conversation is happening via email, do not forward or include anyone else in your messages, as this is sensitive information. 

Quarantine & Isolation 

When someone tests positive or has been exposed, they are provided instructions by county health officials on isolation or quarantine. Failure to respond to or follow the directions of health officials may result in severe fines or prosecution.  

Any student or employee who has completed a period of quarantine or isolation must submit county health documentation to the University before they can return to any UAlbany campus. 
 

quarantine-isolation
Instructions for On-Campus Students

When a student who lives on campus tests positive or is identified as having contact with a known positive, University officials consult with and follow the guidance of local health officials in order to stop the spread. 

Please visit our On-Campus Quarantine & Isolation page for detailed information on what on-campus residents should expect if they are directed to quarantine or isolate, or are identified as a person under investigation through surveillance testing. 

No matter where you isolate, you must have written approval from Residential Life to return to your permanent campus housing assignment. To request approval, upload the county health order releasing you from quarantine or isolation into the Student COVID Documentation Portal.

Instructions for Off-Campus Students

When a student who lives off campus tests positive or is identified as having contact with a known positive, they must notify the University and follow the instructions of their local health officials. 

Once your quarantine or isolation period is complete, you must request approval to return to campus.  

Start that process by uploading the county health order releasing you from quarantine or isolation into the Student COVID Documentation Portal.  

You may not return to any UAlbany campus until you have received an approval, which will be sent to your UAlbany email account. 

Instructions for Employees

When an employee tests positive or is identified as having contact with a known positive, they must notify the University and follow the instructions of their local health officials. 

Follow HR’s instructions for submitting your test result and county health documentation (such as health orders or health releases). 

Once your quarantine or isolation period is complete, you must request approval to return to campus. You may not return to any UAlbany campus until you have received an approval, which will be sent to your UAlbany email account. 

Enhanced Facilities Services 

The Office of Facilities Management is also providing enhanced services to keep our community safe. 
 

facilities
Disinfecting Regimen

Facilities staff disinfect classrooms and other instructional spaces each night, and routinely disinfect high-touch or high-use public spaces — such as doorknobs, light switches, desktops, sink handles and countertops — throughout the day.  

Large gathering spaces are sanitized nightly. 

Disinfectant is also available in classrooms and public dining spaces, so students and employees can wipe down surfaces before and after each use. 

Offices are responsible for disinfecting their own high-use public areas and individual workstations. Lab staff are required to clean labs daily. 

Supplies can be requested through the Office of Environmental Health and Safety

Building Ventilation

When combined with other health and safety measures, increasing outside air, improving air handler filtration and making other upgrades to campus HVAC systems, where necessary, can help prevent the spread of COVID-19.  

Our facilities staff — comprised of engineers, architects and leading building operations professionals — is following guidance provided by the CDC, the State of New York, the World Health Organization and the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers.
 

Operational Changes

Air systems are running two hours before and after a building opens and closes. Air systems inside Residential Life housing, and elevator and bathroom exhaust fans in all campus buildings, run 24/7.  

Wherever practicable, outside air is increased. Significantly reduced density on campus also increases ventilation rates.    
 

Filtration Upgrades

Air filtration efficacy is measured by Minimum Efficiency Reporting Value (MERV).  

The filtration in UAlbany buildings — which meets or exceeds New York State Guidelines — currently uses MERV-11 or MERV-13 filters and many have secondary pre-filtration, capturing virus particles which adhere to other micro-contaminants that typically exist in any indoor setting. 
 

Downtown Campus

The Downtown Campus was constructed between 1909 and 1956 and does not have the same level of building-wide mechanical ventilation as the Uptown or Health Sciences campuses.   

Most Downtown Campus buildings and spaces — including Page, Richardson, Husted and Hawley halls — have mechanical ventilation systems with outside air and MERV-11 filters.   

However, in general, Milne and Draper halls do not have mechanical ventilation systems with outside air and MERV-11 filters.  

For most spaces inside those two buildings, facilities staff are using mobile air filtration units with HEPA filters designed to circulate and purify air. 

 

For more information, please visit the Office of Facilities Management website

Hand Sanitizer

Facilities will continue to stock and refill hand sanitizer stations in all the public spaces on campus.  

Students and employees are also encouraged to carry their own sanitizer for use throughout the day.  

Offices can request sanitizer for their shared areas or customer service counters by contacting the Office of Environmental Health and Safety

Basic Safety Protocols

Anyone visiting a UAlbany campus is expected to follow these rules.
 

safety
Face Masks

Mask Mandate

Everyone on campus is required to wear a face mask inside all buildings — unless the person is inside a private residence hall room, office or other enclosed space where they are alone — and required to wear a face mask outdoors at all times. 

Masks are not a substitute for physical distancing. And, even if you were vaccinated or have previously tested positive for COVID-19 or its antibodies, you must still wear a mask. 

The University has given a cloth reusable mask to each student and employee. Masks are also available for purchase in the University bookstore.  

Alternatives are available for individuals who may need to see others’ faces or mouths to communicate. Please contact the Disability Resource Center for assistance. 
 

How to Properly Wear Your Mask

Follow these instructions whenever you put your mask on:

  1. Wash your hands or use hand sanitizer before handling your mask.   

  2. Ensure the mask fits over your nose and under your chin.   

  3. Situate the mask properly, with the wire snug against your nose where applicable.   

  4. Tie straps behind your head and neck. Or loop the straps around your ears.   

  5. Avoid touching the front of the mask while you put on and wear your mask.  

Follow these instructions whenever you take your mask off:  

  1. Don’t touch your eyes, nose or mouth when removing the mask.   

  2. Loop your finger into the strap and pull the strap away from the ear. Or untie the straps.  

  3. Wash your hands immediately after removing your mask.   
     

How to Properly Store and Clean Your Mask

  • Store your mask in a paper bag when you’re not using it.  

  • Replace your mask immediately if it’s damaged, ripped, punctured or visibly contaminated.  

  • Throw your disposable mask away after a shift or at the end of the day.  

  • Wash your cloth mask at least once a day using laundry detergent. Let the mask dry before wearing it again. 

Physical Distancing

The University has spaced out furniture, marked off tables and created new traffic flows to reinforce the need for six feet of physical distancing.  

Keeping space between you and others is one of the best ways to avoid spreading or getting exposed to the COVID-19 virus. Physical distancing is important for everyone, especially to help protect people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.  

Since people can spread the virus before they know they are sick, it is important to stay away from others whenever possible — even if everyone appears healthy. Please follow these physical distancing practices:   

  • Stay at least 6 feet — or about 2 arm lengths — from other people whenever possible. 

  • Do not gather in groups. 

  • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings. 

Hand Hygiene

Hand Washing & Sanitizing

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds — especially after visiting a public place, blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.  

If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.   

Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth, and wash your hands after touching your face. 
 

Coughing & Sneezing 

If you are in a private setting and are not wearing a face mask or covering, be sure to always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue or the inside of your elbow when you cough or sneeze.  

Immediately throw any used tissues in the trash and then wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. 

Public Transportation & Ride Shares

CDTA and UAlbany buses continue to transport students and employees between campuses. 

UAlbany buses, which operate with reduced capacity to allow for physical distancing, are cleaned daily and deep cleaned three times per week.  

All riders must put on a mask before entering the bus or vehicle. Please avoid touching unnecessary surfaces when selecting a seat.  

When you disembark, wash your hands (or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol) as soon as possible. 

Elevators

Whenever possible, only one person should ride the elevator at a time. Please use the stairs if you’re physically able.   

Inside the elevator, wear a mask and avoid touching the buttons with exposed hands or fingers. For example, you can use a clean tissue to press the buttons instead.

Wash your hands (or use hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol) before and after using the elevator.

Meals

The University has spaced out furniture, marked off tables and created new traffic flows to reinforce the need for six feet of physical distancing. 

Please also follow these guidelines: 

  • Use the provided disinfectant to clean public dining surfaces before each use.  

  • If you’re in a public or common area, wear your mask until you are ready to eat and then put it back on when you’re done eating. 

  • Whenever possible, take your meal back to your office or dorm room, or eat outside. 

  • Thoroughly wash your hands before and after eating. 

  • Do not sit across from or facing someone else. Maintain six feet of physical distancing. 

  • Throw away food waste and packaging in common area trash cans, not individual office trash bins. 

Bathrooms

Whenever possible, maintain at least six feet of physical distance from others. Please also wash your hands thoroughly.  

Facilities staff routinely disinfect bathrooms throughout the day. Bathrooms are stocked with paper towels.