COVID-19 Testing Policy for Faculty and Staff

Updated May 1, 2021.

Introduction

To continue keeping our community healthy and safe, the College is implementing a required surveillance COVID-19 testing program and policy for those who regularly come to campus. Surveillance testing actively monitors occurrences of infection for the population coming to campus. In order to implement this new program, the College is partnering with The Claremont Colleges Student Health Services (SHS) to conduct tests using the rapid antigen tests made by Abbott Laboratories. It is important to note that the testing is only for asymptomatic individuals. If a faculty or staff member displays symptoms of COVID-19, they are instructed to stay home, avoid reporting to campus and consult with their medical provider. SHS will not conduct surveillance testing for individuals with COVID-19 symptoms.

Policy Application

This policy applies to all faculty and staff who are considered essential workers with roles requiring them to come to campus to perform their work. The policy also applies to faculty and staff who choose to come to campus to perform their work and have received approval from their supervisor and area vice president to do so. In addition, this policy shall apply to spouses/partners and family members, over the age of 11, residing in on-campus housing with HMC faculty or staff members. Faculty and staff exclusively working remotely or family members of employees not living on campus, will not be part of the surveillance testing program.

Testing Program Description

Beginning in February 2021, faculty and staff coming to campus regularly will be required to participate in surveillance testing for COVID-19 on a regular basis as a condition of coming on campus. The testing requirement is in addition to the daily symptom screening requirement and compliance with College policies described in the Guide for Faculty, Staff and Student Employees Returning to Campus.

The College is using the following methodology to govern COVID-19 testing:

  • Faculty or staff members who are approved to work on campus and who are not fully vaccinated, including those requesting an accommodation or an exemption to the vaccine requirement (e.g. medical; religious based on an individual’s sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance; or philosophical objection), will be required to test at least twice a week through Student Health Services.
  • Faculty and staff who come to campus periodically and less than one day per week need to consult with their area Vice President to determine if a test is necessary.
  • If someone tests positive for COVID-19, they will need to isolate for an appropriate period of time in accordance with CDC guidelines. They will be exempted from surveillance testing for three months and will be expected to consult with their medical provider.

All testing will be done by medical providers from The Claremont Colleges Services Student Health Services at no charge. Faculty and staff, as well as family members living on HMC’s campus will be provided with specific times to test during the week and information about how and when to expect test results. Further details will be provided by SHS.

Tests will only be performed within scheduled hours; those faculty and staff who fail to get tested as scheduled should not come to campus and should consult with their supervisor and VP on next steps. Faculty and staff who are on campus routinely should adhere to their approved testing schedules. Schedule changes must be coordinated with the supervisor and VP approval.

The test should be done during work time and non-exempt employees will be paid. However, if for some reason the testing day and scheduled work shifts don’t align, non-exempt employees will be paid for their time to take the test. However, they must coordinate with their supervisor in advance.

SHS will obtain a consent prior to the test. Those who test positive for COVID-19 will be contacted by SHS to initiate the contact tracing process. A member of the Business Affairs Office or campus liaison will also reach out to the individual who tests positive to gather additional regulatory information.

Confidentiality

All data and test results will be kept confidential except as mandated for regulatory reporting and campus liaison notification. Specific information on consent forms and confidentiality will be provided by SHS at the time of the test.

Outside Testing

If a faculty or staff member is asymptomatic and chooses to get a COVID test on their own time and at their own expense outside of work, they will still be required to take the test(s) through Student Health Services at the frequency described above.

Symptomatic testing will not be done through this surveillance testing program or by Student Health Services at this time. If a faculty or staff member is exhibiting symptoms, they should stay home, avoid reporting to work on campus and contact their own medical provider for further instructions.

Vaccinations

Beginning May 1, faculty and staff who are approved to work on campus and who are fully vaccinated, will be exempted from regular weekly testing by Student Health Services. Fully vaccinated for COVID-19 is defined as greater than two weeks after receiving the second dose in a two-dose series [Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna] or greater than two weeks after a single-dose vaccine [Johnson and Johnson]. If they choose to, faculty and staff members who are fully vaccinated are allowed to voluntarily continue with screening testing, as long as the appropriate consent forms are provided.

Regardless of vaccination status, we will continue to ask people reporting to campus to complete the symptom screening questionnaire each day and to follow guidance for wearing masks. We plan to review these guidelines and update them as we receive additional guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health and the state of California.

Questions

Should you have any questions about this policy, please contact Dana Nagengast at dnagengast@hmc.edu. For medical and science related questions, we will put you in contact with someone from Student Health Services at The Claremont Colleges Services.