Feel Well, Do Well: Health & Safety
The health and safety of our community is our top priority as we adapt during the COVID-19 pandemic, and we must all recognize that this is a shared responsibility as members of the Barnard community.
Barnard's Public Health Response team provides expertise and sustained focus on health and safety and support faculty, staff, and students in partnership with other areas within the College and university.
Barnard College's COVID-19 Response Plan:
- Testing. Testing plan to isolate infections via both symptomatic and asymptomatic testing, as well as to monitor for potential spread.
- Face masks/coverings. Masking indoors at Barnard will be highly recommended and optional, except in any health services areas (Primary Care Health Service and Furman Counseling Center), as well as in CARDS.
- Good hygiene. Emphasis on handwashing. Hand sanitizer will also be made available throughout campus facilities.
- Staying in if you feel ill. Faculty, staff, and students who feel sick are to stay home, even if their symptoms are inconsistent with common COVID-19 symptoms.
- Community pledge. Community members must continue to adhere to community expectations established through a community pledge that emphasizes the responsibility of every member of the community in helping to maintain a safe campus environment by complying with all federal, state and local requirements and Barnard COVID-19 policies.
Maintaining a Safe Environment
Hygiene and Cleaning
Hygiene is an important layer of safety and it is important for all members of the community to wash their hands frequently, use hand sanitizer, and to exhibit good habits related to cleaning.
- Faculty and Staff should source their own supplies, with consultation from PHRT as necessary.
- Facilities clean public bathrooms and common bathrooms in the residence halls and high-touch spaces such as lobbies, elevators, and door handles three times per day. All other spaces are cleaned once per day. Cleaning includes disinfection as well as new procedures and products related to COVID-19.
- Facilities does not clean the interiors of offices, and will not enter office suites, unless specifically directed and authorized. Additionally, facilities do not clean residential bedrooms and en suite bathrooms.
- Hand sanitizer stations have been deployed across campus.
Masking indoors at Barnard will be highly recommended and optional, except in any health services areas (Primary Care Health Service and Furman Counseling Center), as well as in CARDS. Additionally, masking continues to be required on days 6–10 of someone’s COVID-19 illness, regardless of symptom.
Masking remains an important strategy to avoid infections. We request that those on campus respect individual decisions about whether a person chooses to mask or not.
The College will provide face masks to all students, staff and faculty on an as-needed basis.
Improvements have been made to the College’s ventilation systems. It is important to note that ventilation upgrades are not a stand-alone means to assure safety, but are one of the layers that work to reduce risk.
- The College hired an outside engineering consultant, CFS Facilities Management, who reviewed and assessed the air handling systems and opportunities for upgrade.
- Improvements and upgrades include increasing the proportion of outside air delivered to the space and increasing filtration effectiveness. In some locations, additional stand-alone filtration units or ultraviolet lights have been placed.
- Windows in many locations have been made operable where they previously had been sealed shut, with the accompanying installation of proper window guards.
- Staff/faculty should contact Facilities at firstname.lastname@example.org with specific questions and concerns related to ventilation.
The flu shot is strongly recommended.
It is safe to get both COVID-19 and flu vaccines at the same time. The flu vaccine is recommended for everyone 6 months of age and older, and reduces illness, hospitalizations, and death from the flu.
- Faculty & Administrative Staff: Please review the Pharmacy Directory for the Cigna plan. Faculty and staff are also able to get the seasonal flu shot at their local retail pharmacy. Vaccines are covered under your medical benefit with CIGNA and Emblem Health at no cost ($0) to you. Please email email@example.com if you have questions or require assistance.
- 2110 & TWU Staff: Emblem Health Members can go to a local CVS for in-pharmacy servicing, by showing their ID card. Please email firstname.lastname@example.org if you have questions or require assistance.
- Students: Off-campus appointments and walk-up opportunities for students can be found at https://vaccinefinder.nyc.gov/
Information about the College’s insurance plan can be found in Primary Care Health Service.
All medically necessary care for COVID-19 related illness is covered by the Aetna Student Health Insurance plan.
Quarantine & Isolation Q+A
COVID-19 symptoms might include:
Fever (above 100.4°F) or chills/cough;
shortness of breath or difficulty; breathing
muscle or body aches
new loss of taste or smell
congestion or runny nose
nausea or vomiting
Students who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, should:
- Students who are not feeling well can always reach out to Primary Care Health Service (PCHS) to be evaluated and help with medical management.
- As they wait to hear next steps, students should arrange with friends to have food or other needs supported via contactless delivery until it is confirmed that they do not have to isolate. Symptomatic students should continue wearing masks in their indoor common spaces and roommates, suitemates, and other people in the residential spaces should be masked.
Faculty and staff who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, even if mild, should:
- Contact their supervisor to report that they will be absent from work due to sickness, in the same way that they would for a non-COVID related illness.
- Take a COVID-19 test, and/or see a healthcare provider for a diagnosis.
- If they obtain a negative test, stay home until symptoms have improved and they’ve remained fever-free without the use of medication for 24 hours.
If you have not already done so:
1. Go straight home to self-isolate in order to protect others from infection.
2. Upload your test documentation to this form.
3. Await followup from the Public Health Response Team
You can continue to access campus as usual following close contact, as long as you do not have or develop any symptoms of COVID-19. You also do not need to report your close contact in CoVerified. We recommend testing on day 5 following close contact with a PCR test and monitoring for symptoms for a full 14 days. As always, please report any symptoms you do begin to notice in CoVerified. Otherwise, there is no additional action you need to take.
Barnard students living in the residence halls isolate in their room to recover. Students do NOT move to separate isolation spaces. It is important to confirm a plan if you or your roommate/suitemate must isolate in your room. Consider them your “pod” — it’s important that you develop open lines of communication so that you’re all on the same page about how you will work together to keep each other healthy and safe.
Faculty are understanding of the fact that students may miss class due to a COVID-related reason and they will be flexible. If the instructor hasn't already built into their class a hybrid format, students should work with the instructor to come up with an individualized plan to make sure that they keep up with their classes.
PHRT@barnard.edu can help to advise any related questions and a member of our team will be in touch as soon as possible.