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About This Policy

Effective Date: December 2, 2020
Last Updated: December 2, 2020
Responsible University Office: Human Resources
Responsible University Administrator: Chief Inclusion and Human Resources Officer


Policy Contact:

Human Resources
clarksonhr@clarkson.edu

Applies to

This Policy currently applies to all Faculty and Staff across departments, Institutes, Centers and Schools in the Potsdam campus, who would be returning to work on campus effective January 4, 2021. However, based on requirements by the state or increase in cases of COVID 19, Clarkson reserves the right to adjust this policy to include all faculty and staff working on site across all our campuses.

Policy Purpose

To protect the health and safety of the Clarkson community by monitoring potential instances of COVID-19 infection and to utilize that information to reduce transmission.

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Definition of Terms

COVID-19 Test – A laboratory test that identifies SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, such as RT-PCR.

Negative Test Results- As per CDC, a negative test result means that you probably did not have COVID-19 at the time your sample was collected. The test result only means that you did not have COVID-19 at the time of testing. Therefore, it is advisable to monitor your symptoms, and observe infection control practices such as social distancing, wearing face coverings, regular handwashing and other measures.

Positive Test Results – As per the CDC, a positive COVID-19 test means you currently have or recently had the virus.

For additional COVID-19 related definitions, please see COVID-19 Interim Policies (COVID-19 Interim Policies)

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Policy Statement

As a precautionary measure to reduce the spread of COVID-19, ALL employees required to be on campus effective January 4, 2021, will need to undergo mandatory testing for COVID-19 prior to reporting to work, and at times and dates established by Clarkson University.

This use of COVID-19 testing has been incorporated as a part of our comprehensive approach to reducing transmission in our campuses and is being implemented as an addition to other precautions such as symptom screening, contact tracing etc to help slow and stop the spread of the virus.

Testing is only one method of addressing the risk of COVID-19 transmission. All employees tested are also expected to adhere continually to all other published policies regarding the reduction of COVID-19 transmission such as, but not limited to, hand washing, wearing a face covering, completion of the daily screening, and physical distancing.

This testing policy is consistent with applicable federal, state and local health, safety and employment laws, including with respect to employee privacy and confidentiality.

This policy applies only to requests by Clarkson University for an employee to undergo testing as part of an overall employee testing program. All individuals who have concerns about their own health or the health of a member of their household should contact their primary care provider and request a RT-PCR test.

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Procedures

The following procedures will be followed:

General:

All faculty and staff returning to campus on or after January 4, 2021 will need to obtain a mandatory COVID-19 test through the Clarkson on-campus testing process and return to campus only on the receipt of a negative test result.

  • If you are required to work on campus, you will be contacted with a date and time to report to the campus testing area. Once you have completed the test, Clarkson will inform you of your result within 48 hours.
  • Testing will be administered by a third-party testing company and/or a local health care affiliate selected by Clarkson University.
  • Testing may occur prior to an employee’s return to work on site, as a condition of the employee’s continued work on campus, and/or at any other time at the sole discretion of the University.
  • The University may administer routine testing through random sampling of faculty, staff.
  • Testing costs and any expenses related to testing of Clarkson employees through this program are covered by the University.
  • All of our testing protocols have been developed with St. Lawrence Health Systems and St. Lawrence County Public Health and in line with federal, state and local health and safety laws.
  • Employee testing requirements will be applied in a consistent, non-discriminatory manner in accordance with all applicable laws and regulations and state and federal guidelines.
  • Employee test results will not be included in an employee’s personnel file.
  • Testing times will be coordinated, when possible, with work shifts. Where applicable, employees can work remotely during this time of testing and waiting for results (with supervisor approval).

Test Scheduling and location:

Employees will be contacted via Clarkson email to schedule the testing date and time as well as the details of the testing location and process.

What to Expect of the Test? 

Employees will need to undergo COVID-19 testing on campus. The current plan is that this will be a Nasal RT PCR test (RT-PCR). Specimens will be collected through a process that involves a self-administered nose swab. The test only takes a few minutes and is not as invasive as other ones. Please note that as more testing options are available, Clarkson may use multiple sources and other applicable tests.

Consent to Testing:

Employees must consent to testing before scheduling any testing. You will be contacted for completion of the consent form prior to testing.

Notification of Results: 

  • Clarkson will inform you of the results of the test via your Clarkson email.
  • Test results are expected within 48 hours of testing.
  • Testing results will otherwise be held private and confidential by Clarkson and it’s testing partner except as required to be disclosed by law (e.g., with the applicable public health authority).
  • Employees with a Negative Test Result
    • Will be able to return to work on campus.
    • As per CDC, a negative test result means that you did not have COVID-19 at the time of testing or that your sample was collected too early in your infection. Therefore, it is always advisable to monitor your symptoms, and observe infection control practices such as social distancing, wearing face coverings, regular handwashing and other measures.
    • Must continue to adhere to all safety policies and procedures put in place by Clarkson University, requirements put in place by the CDC, New York State, and the St. Lawrence County Health System as well as their own state health department requirements if they are not NY residents.
  • Employees with a Positive Test Result
    • If test result is positive, you must isolate as per CDC guidelines and must NOT report to work.
    • Must be symptom free for 3 days (72 hours) without the use of fever-reducing medications and have an improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g. cough, shortness of breath) before returning to work. Please follow CDC-recommended steps.
    • Are not allowed to return to work until they have met the criteria to discontinue home isolation and have consulted with a Health Care Provider and state or local health department.
    • Must continue to adhere to all safety policies and procedures put in place by Clarkson University, requirements put in place by the CDC, New York State, as well as their own state health department requirements if they are not NY residents.
    • Please also refer to the Positive Diagnosis and Exposure during COVID-19 and Contact Tracing during COVID-19 policies for more information on steps to take in case of a positive diagnosis (Positive Diagnosis or Exposure during COVID-19, Contact Tracing during COVID-19).

Testing requirements for Athletic Staff:

To ensure the health and safety of Clarkson coaches, athletic staff and student-athletes, coaches and athletic staff who have direct and close contact will be required to:

  • Obtain the mandatory COVID-19 test mentioned above, prior to returning to campus.
  • In addition, they are required to be tested 3 times per week through the Clarkson on-campus testing process.

Compensation:

Non-Exempt employees will be compensated for time spent traveling and waiting for the administration of a test as well as any scheduled hours between taking the test and receiving the test results.

Failure to Comply:

For approval to be on campus, ALL employees need to comply with the mandatory COVID-19 testing procedure. If this testing criteria for entry to work, along with the other entry requirements and screening procedures are not met, employees will not be allowed entry to work on campus or return to campus. Failure to comply with testing requirements will disqualify an employee from working on site and in turn, may impact their ability to do their job.

Duration of Policy:

This policy will be in effect until further notice.

Revision History

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