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.
- 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.
- Immediately contact your Chair (Arts & Sciences)/ Associate Dean of Instruction/Curriculum (most colleges)/Dean (Anderson and Branches)/ or other Supervisor:
- Provide student name, place of face-to-face contact, date of COVID-19 test, and e-mail and telephone information for student to the Chair using the Instructor Checklist for Student Reporting a Positive COVID-19 Diagnosis.
- The Chair or Program Director will perform the supervisor role outlined in the UNM Guidance for Positive COVID-19 Cases: https://hr.unm.edu/docs/hr/checklist-for-positive-covid19-cases.pdf.
- The Chair or Program Director will make sure that cleaning, contact tracing, health, quarantine, and other concerns are triaged and addressed by working with the UNM COVID Coordinator, Student Health and Counseling, Facilities Management, and supervisors in other parts of the university and by following the Chair or Program Director Checklist for Student Reporting a Positive COVID-19 Diagnosis.
- 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.
- 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.