Health and Wellness

The success of Wells’ plan to welcome students back to campus depends on maintaining and strengthening our community’s well-known culture of respect, care, and support. Every community member needs to be diligent — in every hour of every day and in each personal decision they make — to safeguard their own health and the health of others, and this must start in the weeks before anyone returns to campus.

Student Health & Counseling Services

The College’s Community Medical Center will be the point of contact for health-related matters on campus and serves as the liaison with the Cayuga County Department of Health. If you need medical or mental health services, please contact the Community Medical Center at 315.364.3273 or 315.364.3388 to make an appointment. The center is open weekdays, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Containment

Wells College and its employees, students and visitors must comply with all the personal protective equipment requirements that are described in the reopening plan.

Face coverings are required to be worn indoors at all times except when students are alone or with their roommates in their residence room or when employees are alone in their personal office. Face masks are required to be worn outdoors whenever persons come into contact with less than six feet of distance.

Wells requires all persons on campus, including students in residence halls, employees and visitors, to maintain 6 feet distance between each other unless safety or core functions of the work activity requires a shorter distance.

Facilities staff will conduct regular cleaning and disinfection of all campus facilities and more frequent cleaning and disinfection for high-risk areas used by many individuals and for frequently touched surfaces.

Monitoring of individual and community health is a key component of the plan for reopening. We will actively encourage students, faculty and staff to pay attention to their own health status so they can self-monitor any changes that might indicate the onset of illness.

Quarantine

Please continually check the New York State list of restricted states, which as of Sept. 8 included 35 other states. Students coming from any of these locations, or from outside the U.S., will be required to complete a 14-day quarantine period before they will be permitted to attend classes or participate in other campus activities in person.

Any student coming from one of the restricted states on New York State’s list or from outside the United States will be required to quarantine in Dodge Hall or in another on-campus location as provided by the College. Alternatively, students will be permitted to quarantine elsewhere in New York State.

All students in quarantine or isolation will be provided daily meals, and will be checked multiple times per day by Student Affairs staff and/or medical staff from the Community Medical Center.

Preventative Hygiene Practices

  • Wash your hands often and carefully with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.

  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.

  • Stay home when you are sick. This applies to students, faculty, and staff. 

  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.

  • Use disinfectant wipes to clean and disinfect frequently-touched objects and surfaces.

  • Avoid shaking hands.

  • Use your own pens and pencils as possible.

Additional Resources

Anti-Stigma Guidelines (via CDC)

Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Information from the World Health Organization

Information from the New York State Department of Health

FAQs: Health & Wellness

Quarantine and Isolation

What should students and others do if they are arriving from out of state?
Please continually check the New York State list of restricted states, which as of Sept. 8 included 35 other states. Students coming from any of these locations, or from outside the U.S., will be required to complete a 14-day quarantine period before they will be permitted to attend classes or participate in other campus activities in person.

Can I quarantine in the same residence hall room I’ll be staying in for the semester?
No. Any student coming from one of the restricted states on New York State’s list or from outside the United States will be required to quarantine in Dodge Hall or in another on-campus location as provided by the College. Alternatively, students will be permitted to quarantine elsewhere in New York State.

What are the criteria for needing to be placed in quarantine?
Quarantine spaces will be used to house students:

  • who are not cleared to enter campus during the daily screening process and are subsequently advised by their health provider or by the Cayuga Health System telemedicine staff to enter quarantine;

  • who have been identified through contact tracing as a person for whom quarantine is required;

  • or who have entered New York State from an international origin or from one of the states listed on the current NYS travel advisory of states requiring persons to quarantine upon arrival.

How will students placed in quarantine/isolation be supported?
The Office of the Dean of Students will coordinate daily support and care for students in quarantine, working with the Cayuga County Health Department and the campus-based Community Medical Center. A minimum of three health checks will be conducted for every student in quarantine every day. The College’s Case Manager for Student Outreach and Support, who reports to the Dean of Students, is responsible for keeping in daily contact with students in quarantine in order to identify the need for academic, medical, food, or mental health support and to arrange for appropriate services to be provided. Mental health counselors based at the Community Medical Center will provide teletherapy as needed. Because the experience of separation under quarantine can be emotionally damaging, we plan to enlist student peers to serve as volunteer ambassadors to students in both isolation and quarantine, helping to keep separated students connected with the campus community.

Will students be provided meals in quarantine/isolation?
All students in quarantine or isolation will be provided daily meals. Students will have the opportunity to select what meals they will need delivered, and can choose from a limited menu what their meals will be. All quarantine and isolation rooms will have a MicroFridge unit in them for students to use while in quarantine, to properly store and reheat food. Students may bring their own food with them as well.

What is the meal schedule for students in quarantine/isolation?
Students in quarantine in Dodge Hall will be provided meals on the dining hall schedule: breakfast, lunch and dinner on weekdays, and brunch and dinner on weekends. Please see our dining services website for specific hours of operation.

How will students in quarantine/isolation gain access to necessary items such as medications, textbooks, etc.?
Delivery of meals, medication and other essential items will be provided through the offices of Campus Safety and Residence Life, or through the peer ambassadors who are recruited to support students who are separated from the community. All persons who enter the isolation facilities are required to utilize supplemental personal protective equipment, including face covering, face shield, gloves and a medical-grade gown.

Will students have access to wi-fi in my on-campus quarantine room?
Yes. Like all of our residence halls, Dodge has a dedicated WiFi network provided by ResNet. New students will receive instructions when they arrive about how to connect to campus WiFi. Returning students will simply log in using the same ResNet credentials as usual.

Will I have a separate/private bathroom in my quarantine/isolation room?
We will do our best to provide quarantined students with a private bathroom in these accommodations. However, please be aware that some bathrooms may need to be shared by up to four students, although they will still have their own bedrooms.

Does Wells have enough space on campus to accommodate all students who need to be placed in quarantine/isolation?
Dodge Hall can accommodate approximately 50 students, one to a room, for these purposes. Should we require overflow space, we have contracted with two local hotels in the area to provide an additional 50 rooms upon request.

General Safety Precautions

What are the new behavioral expectations for minimizing the spread of the virus on campus?
Wells College and its employees, students and visitors must comply with all the personal protective equipment requirements that are described in the reopening plan. These include:

  • Masks will be required by everyone on campus when indoors and outdoors in the presence of others. This includes wearing masks in all classrooms.

  • Handwashing is essential to reducing the spread of the virus. Wash your hands often; do not touch your mouth or face; and carry sanitizer with you.

  • Everyone will complete a brief screening questionnaire each day.

  • Maintain social distance of at least six feet between you and others.

What is the College’s policy on masks and face coverings?
Face coverings are required to be worn indoors at all times except when students are alone or with their roommates in their residence room or when employees are alone in their personal office. Face masks are required to be worn outdoors whenever persons come into contact with less than six feet of distance. When outdoors, all employees, students and visitors are required to have a mask or face covering readily available on their person and to put on their mask or face covering when it is not feasible to maintain physical/social distancing measures (i.e., to maintain at least 6 feet of separation between themselves and others).

Will the College be providing masks? Can I use my own face coverings?
Students and employees may use their own acceptable face coverings and may wear their own additional protective coverings at their discretion. The College will provide appropriate face coverings for all students and employees at no cost to individuals. Masks are provided to all offices for use by students, employees and visitors by the Building and Grounds staff and are available after hours at the Office of Campus Safety in the Bellinzoni building, a centralized location open 24/7. Face coverings must be cleaned or replaced after use or when damaged or soiled; may not be shared; and should be properly stored or discarded.

What other personal protective equipment (PPE) is available for students and employees, if they believe face coverings are not sufficient for their needs?
Acceptable face coverings include, but are not limited to, cloth-based face coverings and disposable masks that cover both the mouth and nose. In addition, plastic face shields to provide a supplemental layer of protection are provided for students and employees who request additional protection. Employees or students whose work requires a higher degree of protection than face masks and shields must work with their supervisor or faculty to obtain PPE equipment that meets federal guidelines issued by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

What additional cleaning and safety precautions will Wells College be taking to prevent the spread of COVID-19?
Facilities staff will conduct regular cleaning and disinfection of all campus facilities and more frequent cleaning and disinfection for high-risk areas used by many individuals and for frequently touched surfaces. Cleaning and disinfection will occur at least daily, or more frequently as needed, consistent with the New York State Department of Health’s “Interim Guidance for Cleaning and Disinfection of Public and Private Facilities for COVID-19”.

What guidelines is Wells College following regarding proper hygiene, sanitation, etc.?
Wells College will adhere to hygiene and cleaning and disinfection requirements as advised by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), the Cayuga County Health Department (CCDH), and other relevant authorities. In addition, the College and its Community Medical Center have been communicating regularly with the CCDH regarding best practices for screening, testing, contact tracing, and other topics.

How will campus restrooms be sanitized effectively?
Buildings and Grounds (B&G) will regularly clean and disinfect restrooms, with cleaning done more often depending on frequency of use. Signage indicating “occupied” or other methods will be used to reduce restroom occupancy at any given time, where feasible.

Within the residence halls, the following best practices will be used whenever feasible for shared (i.e., communal) bathrooms:

  • Installation of physical barriers between showers, toilets, and sinks if six feet of separation is not feasible;
  • Use of paper towel dispensers in lieu of air dryers;
  • Where the physical layout of the building permits, designation of communal bathrooms on a residential hall floor for use by specific rooms or individuals to limit cross contamination and assist with traffic control; and/or
  • Limit storage of personal items within communal bathrooms, particularly if they are shared by individuals who are not members of the same residence (i.e., roommates).

Will students and other campus community members be provided with additional cleaning supplies?
Buildings and Grounds (B&G) will provide appropriate cleaning and disinfection supplies for shared and frequently touched surfaces and will encourage students and employees to use these supplies following manufacturer’s instructions, followed by hand hygiene.

  • Disposable wipes will be provided so that commonly used surfaces (e.g., keyboards, desks, remote controls) can be wiped down before and/or after use.
  • Consideration will be given to installing touch-free amenities such as water fountains, trash receptacles, and paper towel dispensers, where feasible.
  • At a minimum, Buildings & Grounds will make hand sanitizer available near high-touch surfaces (e.g. trash receptacles, paper towel dispensers).

What is the College’s policy on social distancing?
Wells requires all persons on campus, including students in residence halls, employees and visitors, to maintain 6 feet distance between each other unless safety or core functions of the work activity requires a shorter distance. To the extent possible, contact at under 6 feet of distance should be limited to a maximum of 10 minutes. Contact between persons that is at a distance of less than 6 feet for more than 10 minutes will be investigated through contact tracing if either party tests positive for COVID-19 and may require self-quarantine for 14 days. Any time people are less than 6 feet apart from one another, they must wear acceptable face coverings.

How will the College promote proper hand-washing hygiene practices?
Buildings and Grounds will provide and maintain hand hygiene stations around the institution, as follows:

  • For handwashing: soap, running warm water, and disposable paper towels where feasible.
  • For hand sanitizing: an alcohol-based hand sanitizer containing at least 60% alcohol for areas where handwashing facilities may not be available or practical.
  • Hand sanitizer will be available throughout common areas, placed in convenient locations, such as at building entrances, exits, and points of reception. Touch-free hand sanitizer dispensers will be installed where possible.
  • Signage will be placed near hand sanitizer stations indicating that visibly soiled hands should be washed with soap and water, since hand sanitizer is not effective on visibly soiled hands.
  • Signage will include a reminder that alcohol-based hand sanitizers can be flammable and may not be suitable for certain areas on campus.
  • Receptacles will be placed around the campus for disposal of soiled items, including paper towels and PPE.

What can members of the campus community do to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus?
Monitoring of individual and community health is a key component of the plan for reopening. We will actively encourage students, faculty and staff to pay attention to their own health status so they can self-monitor any changes that might indicate the onset of illness. We ask everyone to honestly report any change in status or any health concerns that may arise, so they can obtain medical attention and be separated from other persons, if required to contain the spread of COVID-19. Signage will be posted throughout the campus to remind individuals to:

  • Stay home if they feel sick.
  • Cover their nose and mouth with an acceptable face-covering.
  • Properly store and, when necessary, discard PPE.
  • Adhere to social distancing instructions.
  • Report symptoms of or exposure to COVID-19, and how they should do so.
  • Follow hand hygiene and cleaning and disinfection guidelines.
  • Follow respiratory hygiene and cough etiquette.

If students, faculty or staff are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms, what should they do?
Employees or students who become symptomatic, but who were cleared through screening or have a negative COVID-19 test result will be referred to their health care provider (for employees) or the Community Medical Center (for students) to determine the need for quarantine or isolation; the need for additional testing; and when to resume normal activities.

The Office of the Dean of Students is responsible for receiving and attesting to having reviewed all screening activities, pending the appointment of a Compliance Officer for Title IX/COVID-19.

  • The Office of the Dean of Students is the location where students provide notice if they later are experiencing COVID-19-related symptoms or COVID-19 exposure after being cleared through screening or testing.
  • The Office of Human Resources is the location where employees provide notice if they later are experiencing COVID-19-related symptoms or COVID-19 exposure after being cleared through screening or testing.
  • Employees and students are required to immediately disclose if and when their responses to any of the screening questions change, such as if they begin to experience symptoms, including during or outside of work hours.

What if a student is suffering from acute illness and requires emergency treatment?
The College has worked with Auburn Community Hospital to handle medical treatment for students whose condition deteriorates while in isolation or quarantine. Auburn Community Hospital is the primary facility in Cayuga County servicing COVID-19 patients. The hospital has the necessary negative-pressure floor for effective treatment and is fully prepared to receive and care for any Wells students who require in-depth medical care. Emergency transportation to Auburn Community Hospital will be provided through the Cayuga County Sheriff’s Office as a 911 response; non-emergency transportation to the hospital will be provided by the College van service.

Will individuals who have had contact with a member of the campus community who tests positive for COVID-19 be notified?
The College and the College’s campus health services partner, Community Medical Center, will coordinate tracing for all contacts in the case of an individual testing positive in accordance with the protocols, training, and tools provided through the New York State Contact Tracing Program, including the following:

  • Confidentiality will be maintained as required by federal and state law and regulations and the College will cooperate with state and local health department contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine efforts.
  • Where feasible, the College will partner with local health departments to train staff and students to undertake contact tracing efforts for on-campus populations.
  • As appropriate, state and local health departments will implement monitoring and movement restrictions of COVID-19 infected or exposed persons, including isolation or quarantine. The College will comply with these requirements.

When requested by the Cayuga County Health Department (CCHD), the Office of the Dean of Students will notify individuals who are subjects of contact tracing due to their having come into close or proximate contact with a person with COVID-19. The New York State Department of Health’s “Interim Guidance for Public and Private Employees Returning to Work Following COVID-19 Infection or Exposurewill provide guidance for determining when individuals may return to work or class after a suspected or confirmed case of COVID-19, or after individuals have had close or proximate contact with a person with COVID-19.


This page was last updated Sept. 8, 2020.

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