What To Do If Student Tells You They Tested COVID-19 Positive

UNM is prepared for situations in which people who have been on UNM campuses are diagnosed as COVID-19 positive. Your instructor role involves calm, care, and a clean hand-off to your Chair or Program Director (supervisor).

Your role as faculty member is to complete the items on the Instructor Checklist for Student Reporting a Positive Covid-19 Test and share it with your chair or program director.

This Involves:

  1. Support the student and community:
    • help them seek care and medical information (Student Health and Counseling Services SHAC, tel: 505-277-3136)
    • ask them to self-report that they have been diagnosed as COVID-19 positive at https://hr.unm.edu/cv19;
    • ask them for the date of the positive test, updated e-mail and telephone information; make sure the student will respond to follow-up contact at the e-mail address and telephone number;
    • help them complete coursework remotely until SHAC clears the student to return to face-to-face class meetings (if class has a face-to-face component);
    • show wisdom and compassion by modeling safe practices (mask wearing, social distancing, hand washing) and not stigmatizing illness.
  2. Immediately contact your Chair (Arts & Sciences)/ Associate Dean of Instruction/Curriculum (most colleges)/Dean (Anderson and Branches)/ or other Supervisor:
  3. Address class needs:
    •  Dismiss a face-to-face class if information about the COVID-19 positive test is disclosed during class and the test occurred within 14 days prior to the class. If your class is a remote class and did not meet face-to-face and/or if fourteen days has passed since the student tested positive for COVID-19, continue your class delivery as you would normally, unless you are directed to do something different by your chair or program director.
    • work with your chair or program director to determine whether you need to deliver the face-to-face component of a class remotely and work with your chair or program director on your communication with students. Inform students that they should contact SHAC at 505-277-3136 if they experience symptoms and need health advice and that they should self-report if they are diagnosed as COVID-19 positive at https://hr.unm.edu/cv19.
    • offer academic flexibility and provide regular communication about the class to assuage concerns and to calm students; encourage students to seek support from UNM resource centers, described here https://students.unm.edu/find-your-pack/resource-centers.html.
    •  work with your chair or program director to determine when a face-to-face component of a class may resume.

    It is not the faculty member's role to perform contact tracing, to tell other students the name of the student who tested positive, or to disinfect a classroom or facility. UNM employs professional contact tracers and a COVID-19 investigator, professional safety and risk management personnel, and professional facilities management personnel to perform these duties.

  4. Protect your own health, acknowledge that a COVID-19 positive diagnosis in your community is stressful, give yourself time to recover from stress, and communicate to your students and supervisor with care.