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Wednesday, December 1, 2021

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COVID-19 protocols: UH Housing edition


COVID-19

Gerald Sastra/The Cougar

Living on campus this semester is one for the books with some students navigating returning to campus for in-person classes and others living in residence halls for the first time, so here’s a little guide to UH Housing COVID-19 protocols.

Residence halls mitigating the spread

Although residence halls aren’t able to mandate the students to wear masks due to Gov. Greg Abbott’s executive order, there is strong encouragement for students to take that extra precaution.

UH Student Housing and Residential Life created three levels of operation depending on the COVID-19 updates; COVID Normal, Adjusted and Highly Adjusted.

COVID Normal, the current operation level, has a few restrictions. Community spaces such as lobbies, fitness centers, computer labs, kitchens and study rooms are open with the maintenance of social distancing.

Guests are also allowed in the community at this level of operation, with the limitation of two guests per resident.

Adjusted housing operations from before have lobbies, kitchens and computer labs open with a limited capacity as well as study rooms open with social distancing. Fitness centers will be closed.

Under Adjusted housing operations, guests will only be allowed in residential common spaces but not in residential rooms, apartments or suites. Only one guest is allowed per resident.

Highly Adjusted operations would have all community spaces closed, with the exception of study rooms that are for individual use, and the lobby limited to 10 persons at a time.

under Highly Adjusted operations, guests’ privileges are suspended, only allowing residents into the community.

At all levels of operation, guests are not allowed in residential rooms, apartments or suites.

Expectations of students

SHRL’s COVID-19 protocols website said social distancing helps protect members of the residential community in mitigating the spread of the virus.

Student residents are also encouraged to perform a daily assessment of their health. Residents are responsible for not only themselves but their guests, according to SHRL.

Guests are to be registered by the host at the service desk upon entry and will need to confirm they haven’t been diagnosed or are experiencing symptoms of COVID-19.

Positive test aftermath

UH’s COVID-19 Diagnosis page instructs students who are symptomatic or suspect they have the virus, to contact their medical provider or the Student Health Center for a COVID-19 test or diagnosis.

If students receive a positive result, they are required to fill out a positive COVID-19 diagnosis form and ask permission from their instructors to complete coursework remotely.

If a student’s symptoms are severe to where it’s impacting academic performance, it’s encouraged to contact the instructors.

Whether a student living on campus tested positive and is experiencing COVID-19 symptoms or is asymptomatic, they need to contact their desk assistant or residential advisor in a manner appropriate for self-isolating.

For the safety of other student residents on campus, if a COVID-19 positive student decides to stay on campus they might need to move to a designated quarantine space.

Students can qualify for a return to campus request if it’s been 10 days since their positive COVID-19 test result and they are asymptomatic, according to COVID-19 protocols.

If a student was symptomatic, it needs to have been 10 days since their positive test result and at least 24 hours since they’ve experienced a fever.

Students will be responsible for transferring their own belongings if they need to move to a designated quarantine space and will have access to limited services.

Student Housing and Residential Life will assist with services such as dining, mail and garbage disposal as well as informing students on how to hand wash their clothes since utilizing communal laundry units won’t be permitted for them while quarantining.

Those that are quarantining aren’t permitted to have guests and won’t be allowed to leave the room unless it’s to seek medical attention or during a building emergency.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends for those who test positive to monitor their symptoms and to seek medical attention if they’re experiencing chest pain, trouble breathing or other severe symptoms.

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