Health and Safety

  • Students maintaining social distance while talking

    All of us are responsible for protecting the health and safety of the IUP community during this pandemic. But, the more you know about signs and symptoms of COVID-19, how to prevent its spread, and where to seek health services, the safer we all can be.

    Students who will be on campus will receive a safety kit that includes hand sanitizer, masks, and other items to help keep them safe and healthy. Faculty and staff members who are on campus will also receive safety kits with appropriate personal protective equipment, so the personal risk to students and employees is minimized.

    IUP has partnered with a national biohealth technology company that has all appropriate federal certification, to provide free testing for all students at the start of the spring 2021 semester. Learn more about the details.

    Hand-sanitizer stations and temperature check kiosks are located in all buildings and in public areas, along with signs and markers to remind us to respect social distancing. And, our front-line custodial and maintenance staffs are trained to follow established national and state protocols to keep our facilities clean and sanitized.

    Learn more about the plan and safety kits on the Returning to Campus page. Specific guidance is also available for students with health concerns.

    We also are prepared to employ other safety measures recommended by expert organizations like the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Pennsylvania Department of Health, Pennsylvania Department of Education, and the American College Health Association.

  • Random Testing CDC research suggests that more than half of all COVID-19 transmissions occur when individuals don't feel sick. To keep our community safe, IUP will randomly invite a set of students to participate in COVID-19 testing at the Kovalchick Complex every week this spring. Students selected will be notified through their IUP email, and participants are eligible for small incentive prizes. If you have been selected, please pre-register for a 15-minute appointment on the testing portal. Only students who don't feel sick can get tested at the Kovalchick Complex; all others should make an appointment with the IUP Health Service.

    Testing

    Students

    IUP will offer free, on-campus COVID-19 testing for all students in spring 2021. Testing is highly recommended as students move back to campus and into the IUP community.

    The testing details:

    Sign up

    Students must pre-register for their testing appointment through the COVID-19 testing portal.

    Students who have any COVID-19 symptoms cannot be tested at the Kovalchick Complex. Contact your private health care provider or IUP Health Services (724-357-2550), who can provide testing to symptomatic students.

    Random Testing

    CDC research suggests that more than half of all COVID-19 transmissions occur when individuals don't feel sick. To keep our community safe, IUP will randomly invite a set of students to participate in COVID-19 testing at the Kovalchick Complex every week this spring.

    Students selected will be notified through their IUP email, and participants are eligible for small incentive prizes. If you have been selected, please pre-register for a 15-minute appointment on the testing portal. Only students who don't feel sick can get tested at the Kovalchick Complex; all others should make an appointment with the IUP Health Service via email at health-inquiry@iup.edu.

    Location

    Kovalchick Convention and Athletic Complex. Students being tested should enter the doors facing the Miller Stadium parking lot and stop at the check-in table. After your test, you will exit the building through the doors facing Wayne Avenue.

    Dates and times

      • 8:00 a.m. to 1:30 p.m. Mondays through Fridays

    Students studying at the Northpointe and Punxsutawney campuses will be notified of times when they may receive a test at their home campus. Students from any campus can always choose to have testing done at the Kovalchick Complex at the Indiana campus.

    What to expect at your appointment

    Anyone tested must wear appropriate face coverings, which will be provided at the door if needed. The process will follow all CDC recommendations for sanitization, using a molecular polymerase chain reaction (PCR) nasal swab to collect samples of cells and fluids from the respiratory system.

    To be tested, you will get a nasal swab to collect samples of cells and fluids from your respiratory system. You will insert the swab into your nose and then return the swabs to the testing official. Your test will be sent to a medical laboratory to analyze the materials on the swab for the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19.

    Where to find your results

    Your results will be posted to the secure web portal you used to sign up for the test Results will be available within 24 to 48 hours of your test.

    You will receive an email and text message once your results are ready to view. Follow the link in the message and enter your birthdate to view your COVID-19 test results.

    Follow these steps to access your results after they are ready or if you did not receive a message:

    • Visit the COVID-19 testing portal used to schedule your testing appointment.
    • Click the three horizontal lines for the menu at the top right of the screen, and click "How-to."
    • In the dropdown box, click "How to view your test results."
    • Under the second paragraph that begins "If you don't have an account with us," click the link labeled "click this link."
    • Enter your date of birth and the barcode number
    • and you will be directed to a screen where you enter two fields:
      • Your date of birth
      • The barcode number received at the testing appointment, including the two letters at the beginning of the string of numbers.
    • Click the "I acknowledge..." checkbox and submit.

    If your results are ready, they will appear on the following screen. If your results are not yet ready, you will receive an error message.

    Your information is securely stored in a HIPAA-compliant infrastructure and segregated to provide additional security and privacy. All data is encrypted and stored on its servers in the United States.

    Only you, the IUP Health Service, the IUP Office of Public Safety, and appropriately trained members of the testing company will have access to your test results.

    What to do while you wait

    While waiting for test results, you should self-quarantine to the fullest extent possible, which includes avoiding close contact with others.

    You can use our Hand & Go dining services and the Grubhub mobile ordering app for maximum convenience and safety.

    As soon as you have computer access, update your contact information in MyIUP. Correct information is critical to our notification process.

    Next steps for positive results

    The testing company will contact the Pennsylvania Department of Health with your results, and officials from the Pennsylvania Department of Health will be in contact with you to offer health advice and to conduct contact tracing.

    The IUP Health Services office also will contact you to discuss your self-isolation requirements.

    If you live on campus, you can choose to return to your home or move to Delaney Hall to self-isolate. If you live off campus , you can isolate in your off-campus residence, or, if you are unable to isolate safely off campus, you have the option to self-isolate in Delaney Hall.

    If you choose to self-isolate in Delaney Hall and do not have people to deliver meals to you, IUP staff will deliver your meals.

    You will receive a COVID-19 Testing notification asking for the names and contact information for any individual with whom you have had close contact.

    Your close contacts will receive a notification explaining that they may have been exposed to the virus and should call IUP Health Services to schedule a COVID-19 test. No identifiable information will be shared.

    Other Testing Options

    IUP Health Service will provide testing options for students throughout the spring 2021 semester who have symptoms of COVID-19, who have been exposed to COVID-19, or who have needs that a provider has determined warrant testing.

    Students who experience COVID-19 symptoms should call the Health Service at 724-357-2550 and schedule a telehealth appointment with a provider. After the telehealth appointment, the student will come to the Health Service for a COVID-19 rapid antigen test. This test is a nasal swab and takes 15 minutes to produce a result. If the antigen test is negative, a COVID-19 PCR test will be obtained and sent to a laboratory. The PCR test takes 24-48 hours to produce a result. While waiting for the PCR result or if the rapid test is positive, the student will be instructed to isolate. On-campus students can return to their home to isolate or isolate in the Delaney Hall isolation area. Off-campus students can return to their off campus housing to isolate or, if needed, temporarily move to the Delaney Hall isolation area.

    Students who do not have symptoms but have been exposed to a positive COVID-19 case can call the IUP Health Service office to have a COVID-19 PCR test. Health Service staff will determine when the test should be completed based on the date of the close contact with the positive case. Students will be instructed to quarantine and monitor themselves for development of symptoms for up to 14 days from the last day of close contact with the positive case.

    Employees

    Employees should contact their primary care physician regarding testing needs and options.

    Current COVID-19 testing options in Indiana County include Indiana Regional Medical Center's emergency department, MedExpress , and CVS MinuteClinic.

    Preventing COVID-19

    (Strategy for Mitigation)

    The following are requirements from the CDC for proper hygiene and preventing the spread of COVID-19:

    Wash Your Hands Often

    • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after you have been in a public place or after blowing your nose, coughing, sneezing, or using the bathroom.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60 percent alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

    Avoid Close Contact

    • Avoid close contact with people who are sick, even inside your home. If possible, maintain as much distance as practical between the person who is sick and other household members.
    • Put distance (at least six feet) between you and other people outside of your home.

    Use Face Coverings

    Use a face covering indoors and when maintaining a safe distance from others is not possible outdoors.

    Clean and Disinfect

    Clean and disinfect frequently touched surfaces daily. This includes tables, doorknobs, light switches, countertops, handles, desks, phones, keyboards, toilets, faucets, and sinks.

    Thermometers

    Thermometers will be provided when required by a discipline for accreditation standards or governing body guidelines.

    Self-reporting: Symptoms and Exposure

    • Students are encouraged to self-report symptoms and exposure to the Health Service, 724-357-2550, for follow-up and guidance.
    • Employees are encouraged to self-report any COVID-19 symptoms, exposure, or testing to their supervisor for reporting to the Office of Human Resources.

    Individuals should not report to work, class, or clinical assignments and should not attend or participate in institution-sponsored activities or events if they are not feeling well.

    Any individual who is suspected of having or confirmed to have COVID-19 should self-isolate in accordance with current state and federal guidance.

    Individuals who have self-reported should not enter campus buildings—except for students, who should enter only the campus building designated as their place of isolation.

    Individuals are advised to consult with their medical provider about options for testing and necessary treatment.

    If You May Have Been Exposed to COVID-19

    If, within the previous 14 days, you have visited an area of high prevalence (domestic or international) or you know you have been exposed to someone who has tested positive for COVID-19,

    • Employees should report this to their supervisor.
    • Students should report this to the Health Service.
    • You should self-quarantine in accordance with current state and federal guidance. (See the Research and Travel page about the need to self-quarantine before coming to the IUP campus or the Indiana area.)

    Contact Tracing

    Contact tracing (getting information from and to people who may have been exposed to a positive COVID-19 individual) is essential to help stop the spread of the coronavirus. If you get a call from the Pennsylvania Department of Health or the IUP Health Service about contact tracing, please help! Your information can help prevent others from getting sick. Learn the difference between legitimate contact-tracing calls and scams.

    If you have been identified as a "close contact" of a COVID-19 positive person, you will be contacted by the Pennsylvania Department of health and/or via text from IUP. The text message will come from “IUP COVID-19 Close Contact Alert” and will advise you to contact IUP Health Services for instruction and additional testing.

    Exposure Notification App

    Pennsylvania now has a COVID-19 exposure notification mobile app, COVID Alert PA, available for download free through the Apple App store and Google Play store. The app can detect if a user has had close contact with another app user who later tested positive for COVID-19. When that occurs, users will receive through their phones a notification and guidance on what to do next. Designed to be anonymous, the app does not track location or collect personal information. Learn more: “Wolf Administration Launches COVID Alert PA App.” Download the app: COVID Alert PA App.

    Close Contact Definition

    The CDC defines “close contact” as being within 6 feet of an infected person for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period, starting from 2 days before the onset of symptoms (or, for asymptomatic patients, 2 days prior to test specimen collection) until the time the patient is isolated.

    When There Is a Confirmed Positive Case

    When a COVID-19 test is confirmed positive at the Health Service:

    • The Pennsylvania Department of Health will be notified.
    • Contact tracing will be started.
    • Isolation needs will be determined.
    • If on-campus accommodations are needed, the Health Service and Housing staffs will coordinate efforts and determine those needs.
    • Students will be given resources and information pertaining to isolation, including the following:
    • The Health Service will make daily (Monday-Friday) phone calls to those in isolation. Telehealth visits will be available when needed.
    • The Health Service will coordinate discontinuing isolation with students.
    • If student testing is done at another location when the Health Service is closed, isolation accommodations can be coordinated by University Police and Housing.
    • IUP will report positive cases on this website while protecting the privacy of individuals.

    When a Student Should Isolate Because of a Positive COVID-19 Test

    • It is up to individual students if they want to notify their faculty member (1) that they have tested positive for COVID-19 and/or (2) that they are in self-isolation. As always, students, faculty members, and others should be practicing social distancing, wearing face coverings, and complying with appropriate hygiene recommendations. If they follow these practices, they would not be considered a close contact of a person who is COVID-19 positive, and they would not need to be concerned.
    • As is recommended when they need to miss class, students must let the faculty member know they will be absent and will need accommodations for online learning for a period of time.
    • If the IUP Health Service authorizes a student to discontinue isolation and return to class, the Health Service will provide this student with written authorization that can be shown to faculty members. This authorization will indicate that the student has completed the required time in isolation and is able to return to class. This is the case only when a student seeks care from the IUP Health Service. If a student seeks care from an off-campus provider, the student should obtain this authorization from that health care provider.
    • Students are not required to have a return-to-class note for all illnesses, but students are required to be fever free for 24 hours after having the flu.
    • If a faculty member requests a return-to-class note and the student was treated or seen in the IUP Health Service, the Health Service will give that student a return-to-class/work/practice note once the student is fever free.

    Quarantine/Isolation

    Self-isolation rooms in Delaney Hall are available for students who test positive and to symptomatic students who have an initial negative test and are waiting for test results. Any students testing positive for COVID-19 may remain in Delaney Hall for the CDC-recommended self-isolation period of 10 days plus one with no fever and reduction of symptoms since the onset of symptoms. Students may also choose to self-isolate at home for the recommended self-isolation period. IUP employees will self-isolate at home.

    Anyone determined to have had close contact with a positive COVID-19 case should self-quarantine according to CDC guidelines.

    Anyone feeling ill should not go out in public.

    • Students should call the Health Service, Monday through Friday during business hours. After hours and on weekends, students should call the IRMC emergency department or the Pennsylvania Department of Health for guidance.
    • Employees should contact their primary care physician or the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

    Anyone concerned about possible COVID-19 symptoms can use the symptom checker on the CDC website for guidance on steps to take.

    Food Service during Quarantine

    Students in isolation or quarantine will be able to order food and beverages through the Grub Hub app for delivery to their rooms. They will only need to open their suite door (while wearing a face covering) and take the food inside; they will not need to leave their rooms.

    Counseling Services

    The Counseling Center will offer telehealth appointments during the semester. Students who are unable to teleconference via their own equipment can arrange to reserve a room within the center to receive the services they require.

    Feeling Anxious or Upset?

    If you are feeling anxious or upset or have an immediate need for mental health support, the Counseling Center will take your call any time between 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday. Call 724-357-2621 or email counseling-center@iup.edu to schedule an appointment during that time. After hours, please contact the Indiana/Armstrong Mental Health Crisis Line at 1-877-333-2470.

    Please note: If you have a remote counseling session scheduled, you must be inside Pennsylvania at the time of the session.

    If a friend or acquaintance is in distress, please reach out and share the resources we have in place to offer assistance. You can also contact a member of IUP’s Care Team of faculty and staff members. This group provides appropriate support to students in distress.

    Seeking Medical Care

    The IUP Health Service, located in the Center for Health and Well-Being, Suites on Maple East, is open Monday through Thursday from 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. and Friday from 10:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. for appointments only during the fall and spring semester. The office will be closed for patient care between December 14, 2020 and January 18, 2021, but students seeking medical guidance can still call 724-357-2550 during regular business hours.

    Walk-in visits are discouraged, but same-day appointments can be made by calling 724-357-2550 during the fall and spring semesters only. Students who have questions or want to make an appointment can also contact health-inquiry@iup.edu . If you need immediate medical attention, call 9-1-1 or go to the emergency room at Indiana Regional Medical Center.

    Coordination with Local Public Health Officials

    The Pennsylvania Department of Health Indiana County State Health Center (724-357-2995) is the first point of contact for coordination and guidance regarding all COVID-19 concerns. For questions or concerns that cannot wait until the next business day, call 1-877-PA-HEALTH. The Pennsylvania Department of Health will work with the Bureau of Epidemiology staff to provide guidance on isolation, contact identification, quarantine, cleaning, or any other concerns.

    IUP leadership is communicating and coordinating efforts with Indiana County health agencies to keep IUP and the community at large informed and protected during the pandemic. President Michael Driscoll will represent IUP on a county planning task force committed to working together to make the best choices for the community.