Coronavirus (COVID-19) Medical Information
The staff of the Wabash Student Health Center – Scott Douglas, M.D. ‘84 (Montgomery County Health Officer), John Roberts, M.D. ’83 (Deputy Montgomery County Health Officer), and Chris Amidon, BSN, RN, NCSN(College Nurse) – are working closely with the Wabash Administration to get students, faculty, and staff back to campus this fall. Informed by the latest data, science, and public health guidance, we are taking steps to create the most appropriate residential experience that will keep our community, including our most vulnerable populations, as safe as possible during the COVID-19 era.
There is absolutely no doubt that every member of the Wabash Community will have to work diligently to limit the effect of COVID-19 on our campus. This will be a true test of the Gentleman’s Rule – a responsibility to protect all members of the Wabash Family.
Student Health Center Operations During the COVID-19 Pandemic
- We are considering the best ways to care for Wabash students, while maintaining the health and safety of students and the Health Center staff.
- We will be requiring all students to contact Nurse Amidon via email or telephone before coming to the Student Health Center. All students will be questioned about COVID-19 symptoms and potential exposures prior to being offered an appointment. We are anticipating utilizing a combination of in-person and telehealth visits.
General COVID-19 Information
- Familiarize yourself with the symptoms of COVID-19. If you are concerned you might have COVID-19, you can use the CDC Coronavirus Self-Checker chat bot to help you determine what type of help you might need.
- COVID-19 disease is caused by the virus SARS-CoV-2, a coronavirus that is spread from person-to-person through respiratory droplets and likely from touching surfaces contaminated with the virus. It is extremely contagious.
- You do not have to be sick to spread the virus to others and you can catch the virus from someone who does not appear ill. It’s best to assume everyone is infected and act accordingly.
- COVID-19 causes the most severe illness and death in older persons, particularly those who have underlying health conditions such as heart disease, diabetes, lung disease, and kidney disease. However, many young people have died from COVID-19. It is important to note that we do have students on campus who have medical conditions that put them at higher risk for severe illness and death. We have numerous faculty and staff who are older and have medical problems as well. We need to come together as a community to protect everyone, particularly the vulnerable persons on our campus.
General Precautions and Planning
How is the College planning for a return to campus?
Wabash College continues to prepare for its return to campus residency and in-person instruction under the guidance of the Healthy Campus Task Force (HCTF), the Academic Policy Committee, the COVID Response Team, and in consultation with a number of governmental agencies and higher education entities.
What is the Healthy Campus Task Force and what does it do?
The Healthy Campus Task Force is composed of Chris Amidon (College Nurse), Eric Lakomek '21, Malcolm Lang '21, Ann Taylor (Chemistry Professor and Special Assistant to the President for COVID-19 Response and Planning), and Marc Welch (Associate Dean of Students) with regular contributions from John Roberts '83 (Campus Physician and Deputy Montgomery County Health Officer) and Todd McDorman (Dean of the College). Its charge is to examine and propose changes to our facilities, procedures, practices, and operations to limit the spread of the virus and to manage illness on campus.
What is the Academic Policy Committee and what does it do?
The Academic Policy Committee is elected by the faculty and normally drafts and approves academic policies for consideration by the faculty. They have been deliberating and making recommendations on calendaring, course policies, and best practices for classrooms and co-curricular activities.
What is the COVID Response Team and what does it do?
The COVID Response Team is comprised of Jim Amidon (Chief of Staff), Kendra Cooks (Chief Financial Officer), Scott Feller (President), Todd McDorman (Dean of the College), Greg Redding (Dean of Students), and Ann Taylor (liaison to the HCTF). They have considered campus wide practices and procedures, and approved funding of items recommended by the Healthy Campus Task Force.
What types of precautions is the College taking to reduce the spread of COVID?
Wabash has worked with the Independent Colleges of Indiana to obtain PPE for the Student Health Center, masks for everyone on campus, cleaning supplies, and hand sanitizer. We are placing plexiglass barriers in offices where transactions must take place, and encouraging virtual appointments and meetings. Consistent with our Gentleman’s Rule, there will be an emphasis on personal responsibility for maintaining the health of our community. Each member of the college community will receive a CARE (COVID Action, Response and Education) package containing two masks, a thermometer, starter amount of hand sanitizer and refillable water bottle. The College has also published guidelines for safe campus events and limits on guests visiting campus.
What outside expertise in Public Health has the College sought in crafting its plan for the operation of campus?
We have received guidance from the Centers for Disease Control, American College Health Association, Indiana State Department of Health, Montgomery County Health Department, and the Fairbanks School of Public Health. We are collaborating with the Independent Colleges of Indiana and the Great Lakes Colleges Association on procurement and policy making. We have also consulted with experts at other higher education institutions and medical centers in the area.
Returning to Campus / Student Housing / Fraternity Rush
When can staff and faculty return to their offices?
Discuss with your supervisor or the Dean of the College what the best time is for you to return to your office. To provide for physical distancing, for the time being many employees will continue remote work, staggered schedules, and other strategies for reducing the density of people on campus. When on campus, wear a mask when around others and in high-traffic places, wash your hands frequently, and stay home if you are ill. Additional information can be found in Guidelines for Employees and Checklist for Supervisors.
Are family members of staff and faculty allowed on campus?
The College discourages regular or prolonged visits to campus by family members of faculty and staff. Please review the guidelines for guests on campus.
When can upperclassmen students return to campus?
Deans Redding and Welch will communicate with upperclassmen about when they can return to campus. All students will be required to schedule a time to move into their living units so that we can reduce the number of people simultaneously using stairways and elevators.
When can new students move to campus?
The College will welcome freshmen and transfer students over the course of two days, August 7-8. Students will schedule a time to move into their living units in order to reduce the number of people simultaneously using stairways and elevators. The Ringing-In Ceremony for new students will occur on Sunday, August 9 and will be limited to new students (a live-stream will be available for family members).
How will fraternity rush work in the fall? When will new students have the opportunity to rush?
Beth Warner and the IFC have been working throughout the summer to help fraternities host virtual rush events and to recruit through personal outreach. To that end, each fraternity has real-time access to the contact info for new deposited students. New students will be given time to attend fraternity rush events during New Student Orientation. The exact configuration of those events and how many current fraternity members will participate is still being determined. Designated housing leaders (fraternity officers and resident assistants) will arrive early to prepare their spaces for new students arriving on August 7 and 8.
How will safe physical distancing in fraternity houses and residence halls be practiced?
The College has received guidance from public health agencies to reduce the density in its living units. Floor plans vary widely across all living units. We are continuing to work with Campus Services on altered room configurations that maximize sleeping space for each student. This may include using some spaces for sleeping and studying that would normally be used for social gatherings. Based on each fraternity’s historical occupancy levels, 2020-21 capacities should be minimally affected.
Capacity will be reduced in dining rooms and students will be encouraged to eat in shifts or “grab and go.” Bon Appetit and Campus Cooks are following their institutional guidelines regarding safe food preparation, handling and distribution. In Sparks, self-service stations and buffets have been eliminated, serving areas are spread out, plexiglass guards have been installed, and additional outdoor seating areas will be set before school begins.
Information for International Students
Are accommodations being made for international students?
International students, particularly incoming students, who are currently out of the country may have challenges getting to campus because embassies are closed and there will be long lines when they reopen. Chris Dixon, Senior Assistant Director of International Admissions, will be in contact with these students to keep them apprised of their options. Academic advisors will work with international students on their course schedules. International students entering the United States from their home countries will likely need to be tested at Wabash for COVID-19. This will depend on their country of origin and the recommendations for testing that are in place at the time. These students will need to quarantine on campus until the results of their COVID-19 tests are known, and possibly longer.
What I Can Do to Maintain the Health of the Community
What are plans to encourage community participation in public health best practices?
Students will be required to abide by the Gentleman's Compact, which was written with student input and in the spirit of the Gentleman’s Rule. During this time of a global pandemic, we felt the need to articulate a set of conditions to help ensure general health and safety of the entire Wabash community. These standards are in keeping with recommendations from the CDC and mirror what most institutions across higher education are implementing this year. In addition, faculty and staff have received Employee Guidelines for returning to the workplace.
A COVID Action Response Educator (CARE) Team of students trained in public health practices will advocate for positive physical and mental health practices, as well as conducting public health initiatives. Resident Assistants and fraternity leaders will also participate in the training activities.
How we can maintain the Wabash culture in light of the new challenges and continued uncertainties? What about student activities?
The College will work with the Sphinx Club, Resident Advisors, and fraternity leaders to maintain Wabash traditions and rites of passage. Student Activities Specialist Beth Warner and the incoming Student Senate leadership are working on alternative and safe means of providing students with a range of extracurricular activities.
Symptom Monitoring/Testing/Contact Tracing
Will everyone be tested when they return to campus?
The College will require students, faculty, and staff to monitor symptoms and temperatures daily. The College has contracted with CVS for students to obtain a no-cost return-to-campus COVID-19 test. About 97% of all Wabash students live within a 30-minute drive of a CVS Pharmacy that administers COVID-19 tests. PLEASE WATCH YOUR EMAILfor a note with details about how to find a location near you and schedule an appointment beginning August 1. The email you receive will include your ID number, zip code, and instructions you will need to make your appointment. Because it will take 2-4 days for your results to come back from the lab, it is imperative that you schedule your test appointment immediately after you receive the instructions. Do not delay this process – our time windows are very tight for this important step in our plans. If you do not have access to a CVS Pharmacy, please contact the Student Health Centerto explore alternatives for pre-return testing. Our current plans are subject to change based on the advice of health authorities and medical professionals.
How can I get tested for infection?
At the present time, the majority of testing is recommended for people who are having symptoms of COVID-19. This recommendation will change as more testing becomes available and as public health authorities develop a strategy for testing asymptomatic people. There are many tests available to check for active COVID-19 infection. Most of these are performed by inserting a swab into the nose to obtain a specimen. The specimen is then either sent to a lab for testing (most common) or tested using a rapid on-site test. Both tests are looking for the COVID-19 virus RNA fingerprint. Wabash will employ testing to diagnose and contact trace COVID-19 on campus. There are not any blood tests that check for current infection.
How will we be monitoring the number of infected students, faculty, and staff?
I regularly have migraines or allergies. Will ticking the headache or nasal congestion box trigger a "stop" or should I not enter it if I know it is a migraine or allergies?
What will happen if a member of the community contracts COVID-19 when we return this fall?
When students contract COVID-19, they will be moved to an isolation facility or be allowed to isolate off campus with their family. We will follow CDC guidelines for when a student may return to campus. Faculty and staff who contract the virus should isolate at home and contact Human Resources to receive guidance on when to return to work.
What will happen if a member of the community is in close contact with a diagnosed case of COVID-19?
We will follow the CDC protocols for quarantine and testing people who have had close contact (closer than six feet for more than 15 minutes) with a diagnosed case of COVID-19. Quarantined students who are asymptomatic will continue working on their classes.
What does it mean to be quarantined and what should I include in a Quarantine Kit?
All College students should plan for the possibility that they will have to move from their room at one point or another during the coming school year. You or a roommate might become ill, requiring you to be placed in quarantine or isolation for a few days. There is a lot of confusion about the two terms. CDC defines them as:
Quarantine means to “Separate and restrict the movement of people who were exposed to a contagious disease to see if they become sick.” Isolation means to “Separate sick people with a contagious disease from people who are not sick.”
We recommend that every student bring a Quarantine Wellness Kit to school this year. Think about what you’d need if you had to be out of your room for a few days. Some suggestions include: Thermometer, mask or other cloth face covering, personal hygiene supplies, routine medications, cell phone and charger, fever-reducing medication such as acetaminophen (Tylenol) or ibuprofen, hand sanitizer—at least 60% alcohol is recommended, laptop, books, anything you need to attend classes virtually, 2-3 changes of clothing, pillow, and items to support your mental health and prevent boredom.
If someone in my class is diagnosed with COVID-19, will we all have to be quarantined?
The classrooms have been reset to allow for spacing of six feet or greater so that the entire class will not need to be quarantined. However, members of the class may be identified through contact tracing for quarantine and testing.
What about contact tracing?
In Indiana, contact tracing is done through the Indiana State Department of Health. Wabash is developing ways of supplementing this tracing on campus. Our goal is to quarantine close contacts as soon as possible after a positive case is identified on campus.
What will happen if a student must isolate or quarantine? How will he keep up in class?
Wabash faculty are known for their student-centered nature and that won’t be any different during the fall 2020 semester. Faculty are prepared to accommodate students who either miss class for illness or enter quarantine or isolation. In fact, it is important to faculty that students actively participate in symptom monitoring and follow health guidelines rather than come to class when they are ill. The most important part of keeping up when missing class is communication; students should remain in regular communication with faculty about their situation in order for alternate plans to be arranged for the completion of coursework. For routine illness and precautionary absences, faculty will work with students on missed work (as they always do when students are absent). If a student is in quarantine due to COVID exposure or is asymptomatic while awaiting a test result, faculty will expect students to keep up with their regular work. When students are in isolation and are ill, faculty will show understanding and compassion for students’ situations. How students will stay connected to class will vary by faculty member and course. In some instances, students will be able to attend class virtually. In other cases, faculty may record in person or virtual class sessions for students who are unable to attend. And other faculty, depending on preference and the sort of work required in a course, will provide students with alternate assignments to cover missed work.
What will happen if a professor must isolate or quarantine? Will students fall behind?
Faculty are making a variety of plans for how to adapt to a range of circumstances that might arise during the fall semester. If a faculty member enters quarantine for precautionary reasons or is asymptomatic, they will activate an alternate learning plan that will likely consist of a combination of virtual class meetings and independent work assigned to students. Indeed, most classes will have some virtual course days built into them regardless. In the event of faculty illness, departments are identifying ways to supply course coverage to the extent possible, and faculty have been encouraged to put as much course material as possible into Canvas, our learning management system, so that students and any substituting faculty members have access during an absence by the instructor of record. For courses that have multiple sections, such arrangements might be relatively straightforward, while specialty elective courses are likely to utilize more diverse strategies.
How can I get tested to determine if I have immunity to COVID-19?
We are still learning how the body responds to this virus and how we develop immunity. We don’t know how strong the immunity is, how long it might last, or if you can get infected again. Many antibody tests are being rapidly developed to determine if a person has been exposed to the COVID-19 virus. Only a small number of the tests have been approved by the FDA and their reliability appears highly variable. Antibody tests may miss those who have been exposed to the virus (false negative) or may indicate someone is immune when they are not (false positive). Note that receiving a positive antibody test (indicating you may have been exposed to the virus) does NOT guarantee that you are immune and that you are safe to stop protecting yourself and others by physical distancing, hand washing and wearing a mask. The bottom line is more studies need to be done on who should be getting antibody tests and when.
Why is Wabash requiring everyone to get a flu shot this year?
Respiratory influenza usually starts to appear in Indiana in the late fall and runs through the spring. This is the same time period that most infectious disease experts fear that SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19, will be undergoing one or more resurgences or "waves." Having influenza viruses and SARS-CoV-2 circulating at the same time has the real potential to increase the severity of illness caused by one or both viruses. Having a large outbreak could easily overwhelm our ability to care for students at Wabash and also threaten the U.S. health care system that historically has had difficulty caring for patients during severe influenza seasons. We do not yet have a vaccine to help prevent COVID-19, but we do have one to reduce the circulation of influenza viruses. We therefore feel it is critical for the entire Wabash community to be immunized for influenza this year. Dates for on-campus flu shots are September 13 (3-7 p.m.), October 1 (9 a.m. – 1 p.m.), and October 5 (4-7 p.m.). Franciscan, the health care company that administers our flu vaccines, will bill all forms of insurance, so there will be no up-front costs for students.
Community Spread and Changes in Operations
What criteria will be used to determine when the spread of COVID-19 has reached an extent that the College must make changes to its operations?
This decision will be made by College administrators and the Student Health Center professionals with guidance from state and local health officials. This decision will be based upon the rates of infection, capacity to manage health care, and ability to provide quality instruction. Any decisions will be communicated on the COVID web page, Emergency Notification System, and through official email announcements.
Cleaning Residences and Public Areas / Ventilation
What could we do to reduce the strain on Campus Services and take ownership of our own work areas?
Students and employees are highly encouraged to empty their trash and recycling in receptacles in common areas and take responsibility for wiping down their own offices and work areas. This serves the dual purpose of reducing strain on Campus Services while also limiting outside exposure to individual work and living areas.
What will be the protocol for cleaning classrooms each day?
Sodexo Campus Services will use approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions on a daily basis. Employees will wear gloves when cleaning and will renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less when cleaning a specific area. Sodexo staff will clean all horizontal and vertical surfaces to hand height, especially frequently touched points including: light switches/pulls, door handles and plates, tables, desks, chairs, cabinets, and keyboards. Sodexo’s policy is to “Clean as if it were for a friend or member of your family – by understanding and thinking about the importance of cleaning correctly, we will do the best job we can.”
How will common areas in buildings like Lilly Library, Allen Center, and Fine Arts Center be cleaned?
Sodexo Campus Services will use approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions on a daily basis. Employees will wear gloves when cleaning and will renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less when cleaning a specific area. Sodexo staff will clean all horizontal and vertical surfaces to hand height, especially frequently touched points including: light switches/pulls, door handles and plates, elevator controls, tables, desks, chairs, cabinets, keyboards, dispensers, taps, sink fixtures, shower fixtures, toilet flush handles, toilet seats, bathroom handrails, etc. Sodexo’s policy is to “Clean as if it were for a friend or member of your family – by understanding and thinking about the importance of cleaning correctly, we will do the best job we can.”
What role will Campus Services play in the cleaning of residence halls?
Sodexo Campus Services will provide daily cleaning services in common areas of independent men’s residence halls. Sodexo Campus Services will use approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions. Employees will wear gloves when cleaning and will renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less. Sodexo staff will clean all horizontal and vertical surfaces to hand height, especially frequently touched points including: light switches/pulls, door handles and plates, elevator controls, tables, desks, chairs, cabinets, dispensers, sink fixtures, common restroom toilet flush handles, toilet seats, bathroom handrails, etc.
What role will Campus Services play in the cleaning of fraternities?
Sodexo Campus Services will clean common areas and communal restrooms in fraternities twice each week using approved cleaning and disinfecting products according to manufacturer’s instructions. Employees will wear gloves when cleaning and will renew disinfectant every 20 minutes or less when cleaning a specific area. In addition, Sodexo staff will train and educate all fraternity members on proper daily cleaning and disinfecting techniques. Sodexo will also provide the fraternities with the proper cleaning and disinfecting products and instructions for their use. This includes the installation of various hand sanitizing stations at key points of entry into each house along with a few additional areas.
How will ventilation systems be different this fall than in the past?
Most public health organizations, including the World Health Organization (WHO), do not recognize airborne transmission as a route of transmission for COVID-19. However, scientists who study airborne transmission of disease have recognized the potential for inhalation exposure to viruses in microscopic respiratory droplets (droplet nuclei) at distances up to several meters (i.e. within a room). Retrospective studies revealed this to be the case with the SARS virus in 2002 and the MERS virus in 2012. It has also been shown for influenza viruses. Aerosol scientists believe this will also prove to be the case for SARS-CoV-2, the virus that causes COVID-19. CDC guidance is currently based on large respiratory droplet and surface transmission of SARS-CoV-2.
Based on these recommendations, it is therefore critical that the Wabash community utilizes masks (currently mandated in Indiana), physical distancing, and hand washing. Confined settings with poor ventilation are particularly problematic and should be avoided. There are currently no published studies indicating that SARS-CoV-2 can be spread from room-to-room through ventilation ducts in facilities with a low burden of virus (i.e. non-health care settings). Aerosol scientists have recommended consideration of additional mitigation steps to prevent airborne spread of SARS-CoV-2 including: (1) maximizing effective ventilation by supplying outdoor air and minimizing recirculated air, (2) supplementing general ventilation with high efficiency filtration and ultraviolet lights, and (3) Avoiding overcrowding of buildings. While some of these recommendations are relatively inexpensive and potentially easier to implement depending on existing building HVAC systems, others will be more problematic.
Sodexo Campus Services and College officials have studied recommendations from the American Society of Heating, Refrigerating and Air-Conditioning Engineers (ASHRAE) and the CDC and continue to follow the developing recommendations. Every HVAC system in all campus buildings has been studied and the College is finalizing considerations for each facility. The College’s approach will be to maximize ventilation and follow CDC recommendations for opening windows at the start of each day and forcing more outside air through ventilation units. In many buildings during late-summer months, pushing ventilation up will tax cooling systems.
Masks / Classrooms / Spaces / Meetings / Athletics
When should I wear a face covering or mask?
Wabash requires everyone to wear masks when on campus, when around others, and in high-traffic places. Simply wearing a mask is not enough; members of the Wabash community are asked to watch a short YouTube video about mask hygiene.
The faculty were given face shields. Can I use them in place of a face mask?
Face shields reduce inhalation of aerosols and droplets, prevent people from touching their faces, are easier to wear correctly, and allow for lip reading (https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2765525). This last concern is especially relevant in the classroom for instructors. However, the CDC provided updated guidance on July 16, 2020 that does not recommend face shields for "normal everyday activities or as a substitute for masks." Faculty may choose to use them while lecturing if they are able to maintain at least six feet of distance from students and/or have concerns about students’ ability to process their professor’s speaking from behind a mask. We are investigating masks with clear panels.
How will Wabash classrooms be different this fall?
The College has measured every classroom to determine the appropriate number of students for each, while maintaining safe physical distance. Some classes may be taught in a “hy-flex” fashion, which will allow some students to attend in person and others in a virtual format. Some classes may be taught at times other than the normal 8:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. schedule. An additional 5 minutes has been added to the passing times on MWF to allow for clearing and cleaning of a classroom before the next class enters. All plans will be communicated in mid-July.
Can I hand out and/or collect assignments on paper?
COVID-19 is an airborne disease. While the virus has a half-life of viability of a few hours on cardboard to a couple of days on steel or plastic, it must get from the surface into your body to affect you. Consequently, following good hygiene practices, like not touching your face or licking your fingers, combined with washing or sanitizing your hands after touching papers from students, lowers the transmission of virus enough to allow for the use of paper in the classroom. Another strategy is to “quarantine” the papers for a day before grading.
Why is Wabash having any hybrid or virtual courses?
We are working on a variety of options for teaching and learning. We would use hybrid and virtual approaches because of community health (the need to spread students out among a finite supply of large classrooms) and the health of individuals in our community. Likewise, offering virtual classrooms allows students who might be isolating or quarantining to keep up in class, and it gives options for those students who are unable to return to campus and must learn remotely.
How will students' interactions in faculty and staff offices be handled?
For now, we will continue to encourage the use of video conferencing for office hours, individual appointments, and meetings as much as possible. In situations where physical distancing can’t be maintained, all individuals are required to wear masks or face coverings. In settings where transactions must be performed, plexiglass shields will be installed.
Where will we hold meetings and group discussions?
Everyone in the community should plan to conduct as many meetings as possible using Zoom or a similar virtual platform for both individual appointments and group meetings. Room capacities have been adjusted on Scheduler to reflect social distancing seating and all rooms will have maximum capacities posted. Please review the College's Events and Guests Guidelines.
Will campus buildings like the Fine Arts Center, Library, and Allen Center remain closed to the public?
This will depend upon current levels of infection in the Wabash community, Crawfordsville and regional area, and advice from public health agencies.
What is the definition of the "Wabash Bubble" or "Wabash Campus Community?" Does this include families of Wabash faculty and staff, emeritus professors, parents of students, etc.?
The fewer people who are in our bubble, the better we will be able to manage data and infection rates. So, for the beginning of the year, the bubble will be limited to those who participate in our daily symptom monitoring program (required for Wabash students, faculty and staff). Please review the College's Events and Guests Guidelines. We anticipate that the policy will be tailored in different ways to meet the diverse needs of each area of campus.
Will Wabash compete in intercollegiate athletics this fall?
Wabash and the North Coast Athletic Conference announced on July 22 that intercollegiate athletics are suspended until December 31, 2020.
Human Resources / Work from Home
For those of us with school-age children and no childcare available, what accommodations will be made if we need to be with our kids for e-learning again in the Fall?
It is our understanding that local schools will be opening for in person learning. If that is not the case or your child is unable to return to school for another reason, please contact Director of Human Resources Cathy Metz to request special accommodations. Please do not disclose the reason for the accommodation initially. Cathy will contact you if more information is needed in regard to the request.
What if a medical condition prevents me from coming to work?
Please notify Director of Human Resources Cathy Metz to make request for an accommodation. Please do not disclose the reason for the accommodation initially. Cathy will contact you if more information is needed in regard to the request.
When traveling off of campus, should staff self-isolate for any period of time before returning to campus?
Individuals returning from outside the local area should discuss with their supervisor (in consultation with campus medical professionals) the risk of them bringing disease back to campus. Considerations should include the extent of spread in the destination and the nature of the interactions while away.
General COVID-19 FAQ
What can I do to stay healthy?
- Practice physical distancing of at least six feet, wash your hands frequently and/or use hand sanitizer.
- Wear a cloth face mask when you are in public and are not able to stay six feet apart from those around you.
- Avoid people who look ill.
- Avoid touching your face, eyes, nose and mouth.
- Stay home if you are sick.
- Wipe down high-touch surfaces daily using a disinfectant (be sure and read the instructions).
- Eat healthy.
- Exercise regularly.
- Get at least 8 hours of sleep per night on a regular schedule.
- Maintain a normal daytime schedule.
How can I reduce the spread of the virus?
- We know the virus spreads when people are in close contact with one another and that you don’t have to have any symptoms to spread the virus to others. The most important thing you can do to reduce infecting others is to maintain physical distancing of at least six feet and avoid small, crowded indoor spaces with poor ventilation.
- When Wabash re-opens, we will require all students, faculty, and staff to wear cloth facemasks that cover the nose and mouth when they can't maintain physical distancing of at least six feet. This requirement will apply everywhere on the Wabash campus, including living units.
- Everyone will need to practice frequent handwashing or cleaning their hands using at least 60% alcohol-based hand sanitizer. It is crucial that you avoid touching your face, mouth, nose or eyes. See our handwashing instructions to the tune of “Old Wabash”.
- You should cough and sneeze into your elbow, sleeve or better yet use a tissue.
- We will strongly recommend that everyone limit in-person social interactions with visitors who are not part of the Wabash community. This includes gatherings such as parties, etc. If a person visits from outside our community, he or she must practice the prevention strategies listed above.
- We may require you to quarantine if you are returning to campus from travel to a high-risk area, both in the U.S. and Internationally.
- For those students who become infected and are unable to leave campus (or it would not be wise to do so), the College will provide alternate housing for those in isolation or quarantine. COVID-positive students will be placed together in special living quarters.
- The College has stepped up and will continue its disinfection practices, and asks students, staff, and faculty to pitch in to ensure we all adhere to strategies to keep our environment clean.
- While the College will supply CARE packages to everyone in the community (including two cloth face masks, hand sanitizer, thermometer, and watter bottle), students should bring an additional reliable thermometer with them to campus to monitor their temperature. Note that thermometers are difficult to find, so put your order in now. Everyone should bring a good supply of facial tissues (Kleenex) to cough and sneeze into and throw them away after use.
What should I do if I think I have COVID-19?
The CDC indicates the following symptoms are linked to COVID-19:
- Shortness of Breath
- Muscle Pain
- Sore Throat
- Loss of Taste/Smell
- Congestion or Runny Nose
- Nausea, Diarrhea, or Vomiting
If you are experiencing these symptoms, stay home and contact Nurse Amidon in the Student Health Center. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your room, except to get medical care. Isolate yourself and do not visit public areas.
Call 911 immediately if you have any of these EMERGENCY WARNING SIGNS:
- Trouble Breathing
- Persistent Pain or Pressure in the Chest
- Confusion or Inability to Arouse or Wake Up
- Bluish Lips or Face
If you call 911, tell the operator you think you may have COVID-19, OR go to the Crawfordsville Emergency Room north of Crawfordsville on US 231 (call ahead at 765.364.3132 and tell them you are coming and think you may have COVID-19).
- Read more about the symptoms of COVID-19. You can also use the CDC Coronavirus Self-Checker chat bot that will help you determine what type of help you need to seek.
- If you are sick and don’t have severe symptoms, ISOLATE YOURSELF AT HOME OR IN YOUR ROOM. If you are not on campus, contact your private health care provider for advice. If you are on campus, email Nurse Amidon or call the Student Health Center at 765.361.6265. Please review the CDC’s recommendations for self-isolation.
- Fortunately, 80% of people infected with the coronavirus will have mild disease and make a full recovery just by staying isolated and treating their symptoms.
What should I do if I have been diagnosed with COVID-19?
Contact the Student Health Center. Isolate yourself and follow the CDC Guidance on What to Do If You Are Sick and the Indiana State Department of Health Home Care Instructions. If you are not able to travel to your home to recover, Wabash will provide living space for you. Do not share cups, utensils, lip balm, e-cigarettes or other smoking devices, etc.
What should I do if I have been exposed to someone who has COVID-19?
Contact the Student Health Center for advice. Depending on your exposure, you may need to be quarantined for 14 days from the last date you had contact with the infected person. This means you must stay at home or in your room on campus and monitor yourself for symptoms. Please read the CDC’s recommendations about quarantine.
What is the difference between quarantine and isolation?
Quarantine: Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Someone in self-quarantine stays separated from others, and they limit movement outside of their home or current place. A person may have been exposed to the virus without knowing it (for example, when traveling or out in the community), or they could have the virus without feeling symptoms. Quarantine helps limit further spread of COVID-19.
Isolation:Isolation is used to separate sick people from healthy people. People who are in isolation should stay home. In the home, anyone sick should separate themselves from others by staying in a specific “sick” bedroom or space and using a different bathroom (if possible).
When can I go back to school or work if I have been diagnosed with COVID-19?
Follow the CDC Guidance on Discontinuation of Isolation for Persons with COVID-19 Not in Healthcare Settings. You must contact the Student Health Center to get final clearance to return to class. In order to return to work, please have your primary care physician issue a release.
What’s the best way to take care of someone who has COVID-19?
Is there a COVID-19 vaccine?
There is not a vaccine available to protect against the COVID-19 virus. Many vaccines are under development with a few showing promise. It will likely be, at the earliest, sometime in 2021 before a vaccine is available to the general public..
What medications can I use to treat my COVID-19 symptoms?
We currently don’t have any medications that appear to be effective in treating the disease. Symptoms such as headaches, body aches, and fever can be treated by use of medicines such as acetaminophen or ibuprofen. Drink plenty of fluids and rest as much as possible.
What if I have a mental health emergency?
Being cooped up inside and having limited social interactions can be taxing to anyone and can also cause anxiety. Students have access to the Wabash Counseling Center during the academic year. Contact Jamie Douglas or Laura Dolph to arrange a virtual or telephone visit. You can also call and leave a message for Jamie at 765.361.5592 or Laura at 765.361.6252.