COVID-19 Information

See the latest updates and information regarding the COVID-19 pandemic, including a list of University contact information at semo.edu/covid19.

Employee Information

 

Face Coverings

University Guidance on wearing of Face Coverings and Social Distancing (As of May 18, 2021)

Departmental Supplies

Approved supplies must be purchased through Facilities Management.

Facilities Management will be assisting the campus community in the purchasing of appropriate PPE and cleaning supplies. Guidance to assist you in determining necessary PPE for your department can be found on the University’s COVID-19 webpage under Employee Information - Employee Health and Leave category with the question “How does the University classify jobs as it concerns exposure risk, and what are the University’s PPE requirements?” Questions regarding COVID-19 requirements should be directed to Jeremy Gray, Emergency Manager, at (573) 651-2547.

Supplies provided by the University will include items listed on the COVID-19 online order form. Department supervisors should use this form identify and request needed supplies for their department. Facilities Management is working with many different vendors to obtain the necessary items. Quantities and availability will determine when items requested can be supplied. Facilities Management will fill completed orders and notify departments when orders are available. Supplies can be picked up at Central Receiving along with scheduled mail pick-ups. 

All supplies requested, in accordance with departmental Emergency Operations Center (EOC) plans or needed for fall class reopening plans, and not listed on the form, should first be referred to Facilities Management at facilities@semo.edu. As the University’s EOC finalizes fall reopening plans, additional items may be added to the COVID-19 online order form that will be provided by the University.    

Any purchase of supplies outside of those provided through Facilities Management or those purchases denied based on approved plans will require both financial manager and executive level prior approval. These supplies will be charged to the departmental index.

Questions concerning supply orders should be directed to Angie Mitchell at amitchell@semo.edu or (573) 651-2657.

Employee Health and Leave

Classifying Worker Exposure to SARS‑CoV-2

Lower Exposure Risk (Caution)

Lower exposure risk (caution) jobs are those that do not require contact with people known to be, or suspected of being, infected with SARS-CoV-2 nor frequent close contact with (i.e., within 6 feet of) the general public. Workers in this category have minimal occupational contact with the public and other coworkers.

Jobs Classified at Lower Exposure Risk (Caution): What to Do to Protect Workers

Engineering Controls

  • Promote frequent and thorough hand washing, including by providing workers, customers, and worksite visitors with a place to wash their hands. If soap and running water are not immediately available, provide alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • Encourage workers to stay home if they are sick.
  • Encourage respiratory etiquette, including covering coughs and sneezes.

Personal Protective Equipment

  • Additional PPE is not recommended for workers in the lower exposure risk group. Workers should continue to use the PPE, if any, that they would ordinarily use for other job tasks.

Medium Exposure Risk

Medium exposure risk jobs include those that require frequent and/or close contact with (i.e., within 6 feet of) people who may be infected with SARS-CoV-2, but who are not known or suspected COVID-19 patients. In areas without ongoing community transmission, workers in this risk group may have frequent contact with travelers who may return from international and domestic locations with widespread COVID-19 transmission. In areas where there is ongoing community transmission, workers in this category may have contact with the general public (e.g., schools, high-population-density work environments, some high-volume retail settings).

Jobs Classified at Medium Exposure Risk: What to Do to Protect Workers

Engineering Controls

  • Install physical barriers, such as clear plastic sneeze guards, where feasible.
  • Promote frequent and thorough hand washing, including by providing workers, customers, and worksite visitors with a place to wash their hands. If soap and running water are not immediately available, provide alcohol-based hand rubs containing at least 60% alcohol.
  • Encourage workers to stay home if they are sick.
  • Encourage respiratory etiquette, including covering coughs and sneezes.

Administrative Controls

  • Consider offering face masks to ill employees and customers to contain respiratory secretions until they are able leave the workplace (i.e., for medical evaluation/care or to return home).
  • Where appropriate, limit customers’ and the public’s access to the worksite, or restrict access to only certain workplace areas.
  • Consider strategies to minimize face-to-face contact (e.g., drive-through windows, phone-based communication, telework).
  • Communicate the availability of medical screening or other worker health resources (e.g., on-site nurse; telemedicine services).

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)

Workers with medium exposure risk may need to wear some combination of gloves, a face mask, and/or a face shield or goggles. PPE ensembles for workers in the medium exposure risk category will vary by work task, the results of the employer’s hazard assessment, and the types of exposures workers have on the job. In rare situations that would require workers in this risk category to use respirators.

COVID-19 Paid Leave Benefits Discontinue Aug. 1

 

The University’s extended COVID-19 paid leave benefits will be discontinued effective Aug. 1, 2021. The previous discontinue date of Sept. 30, 2021, has been changed due to the current health environment and the University’s plans to return to normal operations beginning in the fall semester.

Employees may still utilize their accrued paid sick leaves for any health-related issues, including COVID-19. Verified and unverified sick leave may be used by employees that are advised to quarantine, are placed on home restriction, or are caring for a qualified family member with COVID-related restrictions. In addition, eligible employees may apply for a medical leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by contacting the Human Resources office at (573) 651-2206.

As a reminder, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was a law passed by the U.S. Congress in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that required certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to the pandemic. The FFCRA expired on Dec. 31, 2020, and is no longer binding on employers. However, the University voluntarily continued providing to employees who are absent from work due to COVID-19 issues the same leave benefits of the FFCRA.

Questions should be referred to Human Resources at (573) 651-2206.

Employees who believe they are experiencing personal health issues associated with the COVID-19 virus should follow these procedures:

  1. If you believe you have a medical emergency, call 911.

  2. At any sign of illness, immediately self-isolate, stay away from others, continue wearing a face cover, monitor your symptoms, and wash your hands and face frequently. Stay at home.  If symptoms include fever of 100.4 or higher, cough, wheezing, or shortness of breath, employees should contact their primary care provider or one of the local coronavirus nurse hotlines, or an urgent care testing facility.  Visit page 20 of the Protect the Nest Return to Campus Plan for test site phone numbers. 

  3. Contact your immediate supervisor and Alissa Davis, director of Human Resources, at adavis@semo.edu to relay situation circumstances.

  4. Employee will complete both a COVID-19 Persons Under Investigation (PUI) and a Request for Emergency Paid Sick Leave or Emergency Family Medical Leave form.  (Note: The PUI may be shared with the Cape Girardeau County Public Health Center or the appropriate county Public Health Center based on your location).  The public health department, with assistance from Public Safety emergency management staff, when needed, conducts contact tracing interviews with the PUI.  This information will help track the length of quarantine, as well as, any environmental cleaning requirements of University facilities.  Additionally, it will facilitate notification of others for whom quarantine and self-monitoring may be required.

  5. Employee should not return to work until the following criteria are met:

After a Positive COVID Test or Quarantine

  • Public Health determines the length of necessary isolation and provides a letter you can use for missed work.
  • Employees may return to work  when local public health official or a physician issues a release from isolation, based on current CDC guidelines.
  • For those who are asked to quarantine:
    • Public Health determines the length of a quarantine when someone is known to be a close contact of someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.
    • During this time, you should stay in your home or living quarters, limiting exposures to other persons.
      • Do not attend public activities and do not travel.
      • Your health status should be monitored daily to determine if you require treatment.
  • Public health officials or physician will issue a release to return to work based on current CDC guidelines.
  • In cases of isolation or quarantine, employees may be eligible to use FFCRA leave.

After a Negative COVID Test or Sick With COVID-like Symptoms

Because other illnesses have symptoms similar to COVID, care should be taken to evaluate returning to work after recovering from them.  Based on guidance from the Cape Girardeau County Public Health Center, if you are sick with an illness you know not to be COVID-19, you should not return to work until you are:

- Symptom free for three days (without the use of fever-reducing medication)

- Wear a face covering when you return to regular activities

If feasible and in consultation with the supervisor, employees should telework during the three-day precautionary period.

If symptoms re-occur during the three-day precautionary period, teleworking should cease and the employee should seek medical attention.

- The appropriate leave should be recorded on the employee timesheet for the days after seeking medical attention.

- Medical documentation should be provided to Human Resources for determination as to whether the employee can return to their normal work environment at that time.

Employees may also contact H&H Health Associates, the University's Employee Assistance Program, for help with feelings of stress or anxiety about these events.

Additional information is available on the Employee Assistance Program benefits.   

 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages employees to use telehealth services, rather than visiting a doctor's office or clinic, to limit the spread of the disease. University employees may access Teladoc for telehealth services. Teladoc gives you access 24 hours, seven days a week to a U.S. board-certified doctor through the convenience of phone, video or mobile app visits. More information about the CDC’s assessment tool for COVID-19 risk categories.

 

Employees who have symptoms of illness should stay home and not come to work until they are free of fever, and any other symptoms, for at least 24 hours, without the use of fever-reducing or other symptom-altering medicines (e.g., cough suppressants). Employees will be expected to use their available paid sick leave to cover time away from work unless their physician or public health determine the illness is related to COVID-19. 

Employees with concerns or questions about their illness or seeking advice about whether to come to work should contact their supervisor, the Director or Assistant Director of Human Resources and their personal health care provider to manage their situation appropriately. 

 

COVID-19 Paid Leave Benefits Discontinue Aug. 1

The University’s extended COVID-19 paid leave benefits will be discontinued effective Aug. 1, 2021. The previous discontinue date of Sept. 30, 2021, has been changed due to the current health environment and the University’s plans to return to normal operations beginning in the fall semester.

Employees may still utilize their accrued paid sick leaves for any health-related issues, including COVID-19. Verified and unverified sick leave may be used by employees that are advised to quarantine, are placed on home restriction, or are caring for a qualified family member with COVID-related restrictions. In addition, eligible employees may apply for a medical leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by contacting the Human Resources office at (573) 651-2206.

As a reminder, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was a law passed by the U.S. Congress in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that required certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to the pandemic. The FFCRA expired on Dec. 31, 2020, and is no longer binding on employers. However, the University voluntarily continued providing to employees who are absent from work due to COVID-19 issues the same leave benefits of the FFCRA.

Questions should be referred to Human Resources at (573) 651-2206.

 

COVID-19 Paid Leave Benefits Discontinue Aug. 1

 The University’s extended COVID-19 paid leave benefits will be discontinued effective Aug. 1, 2021. The previous discontinue date of Sept. 30, 2021, has been changed due to the current health environment and the University’s plans to return to normal operations beginning in the fall semester.

Employees may still utilize their accrued paid sick leaves for any health-related issues, including COVID-19. Verified and unverified sick leave may be used by employees that are advised to quarantine, are placed on home restriction, or are caring for a qualified family member with COVID-related restrictions. In addition, eligible employees may apply for a medical leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by contacting the Human Resources office at (573) 651-2206.

As a reminder, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was a law passed by the U.S. Congress in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that required certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to the pandemic. The FFCRA expired on Dec. 31, 2020, and is no longer binding on employers. However, the University voluntarily continued providing to employees who are absent from work due to COVID-19 issues the same leave benefits of the FFCRA.

Questions should be referred to Human Resources at (573) 651-2206. 

 

COVID-19 Paid Leave Benefits Discontinue Aug. 1

The University’s extended COVID-19 paid leave benefits will be discontinued effective Aug. 1, 2021. The previous discontinue date of Sept. 30, 2021, has been changed due to the current health environment and the University’s plans to return to normal operations beginning in the fall semester.

Employees may still utilize their accrued paid sick leaves for any health-related issues, including COVID-19. Verified and unverified sick leave may be used by employees that are advised to quarantine, are placed on home restriction, or are caring for a qualified family member with COVID-related restrictions. In addition, eligible employees may apply for a medical leave under the Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) by contacting the Human Resources office at (573) 651-2206.

As a reminder, the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) was a law passed by the U.S. Congress in March 2020 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic that required certain employers to provide their employees with paid sick leave and expanded family and medical leave for specified reasons related to the pandemic. The FFCRA expired on Dec. 31, 2020, and is no longer binding on employers. However, the University voluntarily continued providing to employees who are absent from work due to COVID-19 issues the same leave benefits of the FFCRA.

Questions should be referred to Human Resources at (573) 651-2206.

Contact

Mailing Address
One University Plaza, MS 7275
Cape Girardeau, Missouri 63701