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Coronavirus Information

In accordance with Illinois Gov. JB Pritzker’s July 13 executive order, SIU Carbondale will no longer require weekly testing for most faculty, staff or students who have not been fully vaccinated for COVID-19. However, in accordance with this order, students and employees in specific locations, such as the Student Health Center, who are not fully vaccinated must continue to test.

Masks are still recommended but not required indoors, except in health care settings such as the Student Health Center. Additionally, testing will be available each Tuesday from noon to 4 p.m. and future schedules will be communicated in this space. The Student Health Center will continue to test students who are experiencing symptoms.

Updates will be posted here. You can send questions to pandemicinfo@siu.edu. We will continue to monitor the situation and adapt our plans as needed.

The following FAQs address SIU Carbondale’s response to COVID. Information is subject to change. Please revisit this site regularly. Submit additional questions to pandemicinfo@siu.edu. (updated 8-15-22)

General Information

The university follows guidance from the CDC. If you are exposed, the CDC recommends taking precautions such as wearing a mask but not quarantining, regardless of vaccination status. Then get tested on day 6 after exposure or sooner if you develop symptoms. For complete information, consult the CDC website.

If you test positive, you must isolate for five days. After that, if you are fever-free for 24 hours (without the help of medication) and your symptoms are improving, you can end isolation but must wear a mask for five more days. Consult the CDC website for complete information, including what to do if your symptoms are moderate or severe.

For students who live on campus and test positive for COVID, we have established a location for isolation; the students are provided food and support. All students have access to Student Health Services. IDPH is responsible for tracing and notifying individuals who may be subject to isolation protocols. The health status of an individual student or employee is confidential.

If you have been contacted by IDPH, follow the instructions. If you have not been contacted by IDPH, follow CDC guidelines and take precautions such as wearing a mask but not quarantining, regardless of vaccination status. Then get tested on day 6 after exposure or sooner if you develop symptoms. For complete information, consult the CDC website.

Yes. Regarding masks in indoor spaces, we are following the governor’s order, which applies throughout the state.

If a document is no longer visible to you, that means it’s been processed. If it’s a COVID vaccine card or record, you can check by looking under “Immunizations” in the Saluki Health Portal and see your doses recorded. (Be aware you must be fully vaccinated to be exempt from testing, which is two weeks after a one-dose vaccine or two weeks after the second dose of a two-dose vaccine.) Test results, once processed, won’t be visible to you. Be aware that if your test results don’t contain dates or names, you will receive an email about non-compliance and will need to submit the test result with the date and your name. You will be contacted by the dean of students (if you’re a student) or Human Resources (if you’re an employee). If you test on campus, there is no need to upload the result – that will be done automatically.

The Jackson County Health Department has a walk in clinic Monday-Friday. This includes SIU students from Illinois and outside our state. You can find out more on the Jackson County Health Department website.

Consistent with the Restore Illinois plan, we are reverting to limitations in place before the pandemic, such as the capacity of a room or venue.

All groups hosting events on campus or for the campus community are required to follow current campus, state and CDC guidelines. Those hosting the events and meetings can determine the optimal approach for their activities in the context of their audience, purpose, format and space as long as the plans align with current guidelines.

Currently, the only requirement is that masks be worn for indoor events. There is currently no COVID-related event approval process in place, no capacity restrictions or social distancing requirements.  Please check this website frequently though as changes are possible due to the ever-changing nature of the situation.

Here are some recommendations to consider as you plan in order to assure events are as safe and healthy as possible for participants:

  • Be thoughtful of your audience and their specific expectations and needs.
  • Consider outdoor, virtual and hybrid options, if appropriate.
  • If possible, have contingency plans in place in case circumstances arise that alter the original plans, such as inclement weather during an outdoor event.
  • Consider set-ups that allow for social distancing.
  • Have extra masks and hand sanitizer on hand.
  • Provide pre-packaged or served food (instead of having people serve themselves).
  • Have people sit, rather than walk around, when eating.
  • Communicate your event/meeting plans in all of your event promotion materials.

HEALTH AND SAFETY

Please consult the COVID-19 Testing page.

Masks are optional in most shared indoor spaces such as classrooms, labs, lobbies and hallways and event or gathering spaces like Morris Library, Banterra Center and the Student Center. Masks are still required in health care settings such as the Student Health Center.

If you are aware that someone who has recently been in your facility has tested positive for COVID-19, fill out the facility exposure notification form and provide details about the potential exposure risk. The Emergency Operations Center and Plant and Service Operations use the report to review and provide services as necessary. Meanwhile, do not go into the office or workspace of the individual.

STUDENTS

We want your time here at SIU to be enjoyable and as safe as possible. Here are some simple measures you can take to protect yourself and others from getting viruses, including COVID-19, influenza and monkeypox.

  • If you are not feeling well, stay home. We understand that you don’t want to get behind on your studies, but going to classes when you are not feeling well increases the risk of passing on an illness to someone else. Also, you need the time to rest and allow your body to get better.  If you have to go out for any reason, please wear a mask to protect others.  If you need a note for class or work, you can get one here.
  • Wash your hands.  This is the most effective way to prevent the spread of illness.  Soap and hand sanitizers are equally effective. 
  • Avoid crowds or crowded areas, if possible.  Large group gatherings, especially in enclosed spaces, are high-risk environments for spreading illnesses. 
  • Wear a mask.  Even though there is not a mask mandate on campus, it is a good idea to wear a mask to protect yourself from illnesses, especially in indoor settings. Masks are still required when visiting health care facilities, including Student Health Services. You should also wear a mask if you are not feeling well. 
  • See a medical provider. If you are not feeling well, please make an appointment at the Student Health Center to be evaluated. We are here to help. You can make an appointment online through the Saluki Health Portal, shc.siu.edu, or by calling the Student Health Center at 618-536-2391. 

Students with disabilities and students who request course accommodations because they are at high risk for serious complications from COVID-19 should contact Disability Support Services at disabilityservices@siu.edu or 618-453-5738. Disability Support Services staff will work directly with instructors on necessary accommodations. If you don’t have a disability or are not personally at high risk, you can consult with your academic advisor to review your options.

We know that many students and families are facing financial challenges due to the pandemic and our shared efforts to stem the spread of COVID-19. Our goal is to minimize the impact of these challenges on your ability to continue your education.

We have increased the amount you can carry on your bursar account in order to be able to register for fall 2021 classes. Previously, if you owed more than $200 on your account you would not be able to register. Continuing a temporary change made for current fall semester, we have raised that amount to $1,500 to minimize barriers to registration for spring. In other words, as long as you owe no more than $1,500 on your account, you will be able to register for spring 2020 classes. This is a temporary measure in recognition of the extraordinary circumstances caused by the pandemic. Please email the bursar’s office at bursar@siu.edu or call 618-453-2221 with questions.

You might consider calling Counseling and Psychological Services, where counselors are available to help students with mental health concerns or coach students with who are dealing with anxiety surrounding the COVID-19 outbreak. CAPS staff will be available by phone at 618-453-5371 from 8 a.m. to 9 p.m. Monday through Friday and 1-9 p.m. Saturday and Sunday. Treatment and coaching options have been expanded to accommodate students remotely and now include telehealth appointments, skills coaching or referrals to other providers in your area. All students are advised to call CAPS at 618-453-5371 to determine the treatment options that would best meet their needs.

The following websites offer strategies for people who feel anxiety related to the coronavirus and suggestions on how to take care of your mental health: Coping with Stress During the COVID-19 Outbreak and Coping with Stress During Infectious Disease Outbreaks.

United Healthcare is taking action to ensure health plan members and patients affected by COVID-19 have the support and resources they need. United Healthcare has an informative FAQ sheet, and students can ask specific follow-up questions at 1-866-948-8472. It is important to note that laboratory testing for COVID-19 will be covered, and cost sharing will be waived, including copays, coinsurance and deductibles, at approved locations in accordance with CDC guidelines. Please call the number above if you have concerns regarding approved locations. If you are an SIU Carbondale student in the Carbondale area, please remember that Student Health Services is open and capable of testing for COVID-19. If you have symptoms and/or a possible exposure to COVID-19, please call the Student Health Center to schedule an appointment at 618-453-4458. If you are at home, please visit www.uhcsr.com/MyAccount to find a network provider near you.

You can contact Gallagher Student Health at 1-888-538-0602 to request a form to petition to add student health insurance due to a qualifying event. The rates will be prorated for the semester.

Students and family members can call the Office of the Dean of Students 618-453-4846 or 1-877-725-0006 between 8 am and 4:30 pm, Monday - Friday. Questions can also be sent to the pandemicinfo@siu.edu email address at any time, including evenings and weekends.

Because recommendations change daily, please contact Student Health Services at 618-453-3311 or shcinfo@siu.edu.The State of Illinois is currently not requiring quarantine of people who come from other states.

FACULTY AND STAFF

Please see Saluki Safety for information about health and safety protocols.

Please contact Disability Support Services at 618-615-4492 for private, confidential assistance with requests for accommodation.

Employees who are directed by a health official to isolate are required to comply with the order. If you are isolated and unable to work because you are ill, you will need to take leave.

Yes, employees exhibiting symptoms will be sent home. The employee's continued presence must pose no risk to the health of the employee, other employees and students in order to remain at work.

Infected employees pose a threat to other employees and students and could spread the virus. If a supervisor believes an employee has COVID-19 symptoms, including a fever, the supervisor will consult with his/her director. Based on that and any other necessary consultation, an employee who is suspected to have COVID-19 will be ordered to go home to protect the campus community. If the employee refuses the directive to go home, that employee may be disciplined for insubordination in accordance with applicable policies, rules, and/or collective bargaining agreements.

Temporary illnesses, such as the flu, are not typically considered a work-related injury under the Illinois Worker's Compensation Act. However, the university encourages employees to consult with Human Resources in order to verify whether the employee's particular situation may be covered.

FMLA may be available with regard to the employee's own serious health condition or for the care of a family member with a serious health condition. Contact Human Resources for more information.

Start with your supervisor with questions related to your status or office. Supervisors will consult with directors and deans as appropriate. Questions may also be sent to pandemicinfo@siu.edu by any employee.

INSTRUCTORS

Where a faculty member tests positive or is instructed to quarantine or isolate, they are advised to contact their school director for guidance. There is a contingency planning committee that is currently considering potential options/scenarios and will provide additional guidance as soon as it becomes available.

Tell the student to self-isolate and call the Student Health Center at 618-453-3311 for further instruction. If the student shows up in class and expresses concern about his or her health or seems to be ill health, ask them to leave, self-isolate and contact the Student Health Center for further instruction.

In cases of exposure, the CDC recommends taking precautions such as wearing a mask but not quarantining, regardless of vaccination status. For more, consult the CDC website. IDPH is responsible for tracing and notifying individuals who may be subject to isolation or quarantine protocols. The health status of an individual student or employee is confidential. Decisions related to holding future classes (considering the impact of COVID) are made in consultation with the dean or director, based on information from the local health department. Exposure, or suspected exposure, to the illness can be reported using the COVID-19 reporting form.

Please consult with your school director and college dean.

Please contact Disability Support Services at 618-615-4492 for private, confidential assistance with requests for accommodation.