Health, Wellness & Prevention FAQs
Written approval is required before any college community member may return to campus after self-quarantine. The timing of your return depends on whether you have exhibited Coronavirus Symptoms or not. See Completion of Self-Quarantine/Isolation for the process and considerations for determining when a return to campus is allowed.
All MATC community members should follow the preventive measures detailed in Prevention and What to Do if I’m Sick. Students, staff and faculty working in clinical areas will have additional site-specific protocols with which to comply.
Employees should also follow the preventive measures detailed in Return to Work on Campus.
If you are diagnosed with COVID-19, do not come to campus (even if you are symptom-free). Follow the guidance -- What to Do If I’m Sick.
We recognize this is a stressful situation for many members of our community. We have complied a number of community resources. Additionally, ask a staff or faculty member about WellConnect (Student Assistance Program) for MATC students.
The Department of Homeland Security has issued an advisory warning of scams involving COVID-19, and the MATC Information Technology Office is aware of phishing messages being received by faculty, staff and students. If you receive a suspicious phishing email to your MATC email account, notify firstname.lastname@example.org, and be aware of the following:
- Cyber actors may send emails to trick victims into revealing sensitive information or donating to fraudulent charities or causes.
- Exercise caution in handling such emails – avoid clicking on links and downloading attachments.
- Be wary of social media pleas, texts or calls related to COVID-19.
- Do not reveal personal or financial information in email, and do not respond to email solicitations for this information.
Follow the protocol described in Potential Exposure to Coronavirus.
ENHANCED CLEANING PRACTICES
OSHA has indicated that “It may be possible that a person can get COVID‐19 by touching a surface or object that has SARS‐CoV‐2 on it and then touching their own mouth, nose, or possibly their eyes, but this is not thought to be the primary way the virus spreads.” To reduce the likelihood of exposure and transmission, MATC is emphasizing custodial practices, including routine cleaning and disinfecting of surfaces and equipment, with more frequency in shared work areas. Additionally, MATC has hired CINTAS to come to campus weekly to apply sanitizer to contact surfaces which substantially reduces bacteria and viruses on common surfaces. This spray is safe as they currently use it in restaurants, hospitals, etc.\
SPECIFIC INFECTION PREVENTION CONTROLS
MATC has made changes on campus reflecting certain engineering controls and physical controls to protect employees, particularly in roles and offices where there are transactional activities where an employee’s role often includes working with many other students, faculty, and staff through the day. MATC has added in elements like plexiglass barriers and plastic screens in these places.
In addition to making changes on campus, MATC will be adding administrative controls and policies, where employees are asked to change behaviors to reduce transmission. These strategies include schedule changes to stagger workforces (e.g. phase in staffing and/or alternate days employees are on campus), and circulation pattern changes in buildings to establish safer pedestrian flows (for example, certain entrances may be indicated for single‐direction use absent emergency evacuation circumstances). Employees are expected to follow signage and spacing so that lines do not introduce unnecessary congestion and close physical proximity, and offices are encouraged to increase scheduled appointments over “drop‐in” hours where serendipity can add to unnecessary population densities.
The College is committed to creating an inclusive climate for all of our community members. The CDC offers guidance on countering stigma related to this virus. If you believe that you are experiencing discrimination or bias related to your national origin, race or other protected characteristic, you may contact the resources below:
Carmela Jacobs, Vice President of Operations/CFO/CHRO, Contact Information
Sarah Phillips, MATC’s Title IX Coordinator, Contact Information
Face Covering FAQs
Yes, unless they have received an exemption or the area or position has been granted a waiver from the face coverings policy. If individuals are not wearing a face covering in a public area, then the first response should be a collegial reminder and an offer of a clean face covering, if one is available. If the individual refuses to wear a face covering, a supervisor (for students this could be a faculty member or a staff member overseeing the area) or security may direct the individual to leave the public area.
For students who are deaf or hard of hearing, opaque face coverings can be a hindrance to communication either due to lack of ability to read lips or difficulties using a sign language interpreter. Faculty are encouraged to work with Student Services to determine appropriate accommodations (e.g., wearing a face shield or a transparent face covering to accommodate students relying on lip reading). For classes using sign language interpreters, interpreters will either wear a face shield or provide remote interpreting.
A face covering is a cloth or other type of material that covers an individual’s mouth and nose. The CDC lists five criteria for “cloth face coverings,” which should:
- Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face
- Be secured with ties or ear loops
- Include multiple layers of fabric
- Allow for breathing without restriction
- If not disposable, then be able to be laundered and machine-dried without damage or change to shape.
Wearing a face covering is about protecting others and our community. Those with COVID-19, even those who do not know they have COVID-19, naturally expel droplets contaminated with the virus that causes COVID-19 when breathing, talking, sneezing, coughing, etc. Additionally, limiting virus spread allows the campus to resume some normal operations, including face-to-face classes without the need to return to full remote instruction.
A public area is any indoor space other than your own private office, residence, or personal vehicle. Public areas include lobbies, restrooms, classrooms, hallways, stairwells, common spaces, conference rooms, and break rooms. Face coverings should be worn in indoor public areas, even if you are by yourself, or any outdoor space where 6 feet of physical distancing is difficult to be reliably maintained.
There are a variety of cloth face coverings available that you can find online or you can make your own following the CDC guidelines. The CDC recommends at least two layers of tightly knit cotton or the more detailed Olson design. In some cases, the use of a face shield may be appropriate.
No, you do not need to wear a face covering while eating or drinking. After removing your face covering for eating, place the face covering into a bag to help keep the material clean and away from other people and items in your proximity. As soon as your meal is complete, wash your hands or clean your hands with hand sanitizer and replace your face covering, then clean your hands again.
Yes, face coverings must be worn in a shared vehicle, even if no one else is in the vehicle, to decrease respiratory secretions on surfaces within the vehicle. Contaminated surfaces may still be a source of infection after you have left. If the vehicle is assigned to a single employee, and that person is alone in the vehicle, a face covering does not need to be worn.
A workspace that allows for reliably maintaining a physical barrier between other workspaces does not require a face covering. In these areas, a face covering is highly recommended but not required.
Yes. Scientific understanding of COVID-19 is still evolving, and currently it is not known if those who have had the disease can be re-infected and become contagious again.
You should use your own knowledge and select the option that best protects and comforts those around you. A good standard to follow is to wear a face covering in public settings, especially where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
Instructors of record will ensure compliance with the face covering directive unless an exemption has been granted through accommodations. If the face covering exception is approved for on campus use, an approved accommodation letter will be provided to the student by Student Services.
First, students will be notified through email the College's requirement to wear face coverings. If a student attends the in-person component of a class without a face covering, then the instructor should ask the student to put on a face covering or to leave the classroom if the student does not wish to wear a face covering. If the student refuses to comply, the instructor can contact security to mitigate the risk to the instructor and other students.
Please contact the faculty or staff member who is supervising the person or the space where the infraction occurred. Their supervisor will be in a position to ascertain whether the person has an exemption and, if not, politely direct the person to wear a face covering or vacate the public area.
If an employee believes they are particularly vulnerable to COVID-19, telework should be considered and used if possible, and the employee should contact their supervisor to pursue this work arrangement. If telework is not possible, then the employee should contact their supervisor. A leave request under these conditions may be determined necessary if other work arrangements are not feasible.
Managers should take a flexible approach when an employee expresses concern about being in the workplace due to possible exposure to COVID-19. Managers should listen to employee concerns and implement a telework arrangement if operationally feasible. On a long-term basis, the employee should follow the process to request telework as a reasonable workplace accommodation, if possible. If the employee cannot telework then the manager should consult with Human Resources.
You should follow the COVID-19 Diagnosis/Symptoms Protocols. Remember that the employee will appreciate hearing your support while they recover from the illness.
You can anticipate that other employees may have heard about, or suspect that, someone is out sick with the COVID-19 related illness, and may be concerned about it. You should inform fellow employees of their possible exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace and acknowledge that there is an individual who has tested positive for COVID-19, without identifying the individual. You may also inform employees that an assessment will be undertaken to determine if there is indication for quarantine or further notifications as a precautionary measure.
In the meantime, you should send home any potentially exposed employees (as described in Potential Exposure to Coronavirus) and instruct them to complete the COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form and to follow the Self-Quarantine protocols. Inform them that they will need to be approved before they can return to campus as detailed in Completion of Self-Quarantine/Isolation. See COVID-19 Diagnosis/Symptoms Protocols for list of steps to follow.
A suspected but unconfirmed case of COVID-19 should be treated the same as a confirmed case. You should follow the COVID-19 Diagnosis/Symptoms Protocols.
Since a fever above 100.0 degrees is a possible Coronavirus Symptom, you should advise the employee to stay home and follow the guidance in What to Do If I’m Sick. The employee should also submit the COVID-19 Self-Reporting Form and commence the Self-Quarantine/Isolation protocols. See COVID-19 Diagnosis/Symptoms Protocols for list of steps to follow.
The EEOC has confirmed that a supervisor can inquire into an employee’s symptoms, even if such questions are disability-related, as you would be considered to have a "reasonable belief based on objective evidence that the severe form of pandemic influenza poses a direct threat." Inquiries into an employee’s symptoms should attempt to distinguish the symptoms of COVID-19 from the common cold and the seasonal flu.
It is important to remember that you must maintain all information about employee illness as a confidential medical record in compliance with the ADA.
If you have been in self-quarantine or self-isolation, you will not be allowed to return to work until you receive written approval to return to campus. To be considered, at least 3 days (72 hours) must have passed since recovery (defined as resolution of fever without the use of fever-reducing medications) and improvement in respiratory symptoms (e.g., cough, shortness of breath) and at least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared. See Completion of Self-Quarantine/Isolation for further information.
No, individuals with confirmed cases of COVID-19 will not be identified in order to maintain confidentiality.