Updates regarding COVID-19

News and updates

September 18, 2020 Update

In light of recent developments, please note the following updates regarding FoM:

  • RGN plans for reception are scheduled to change next week as the Faculty will rely on Student Ambassadors to greet those arriving at RGN and PMC for the entire fall semester. The Student Ambassadors will observe and report on COVID-19 measures compliance and have hand sanitizers available. However, please note that the method of facemask distribution is being reassessed and disposable masks will no longer be provided at the reception desk after September 23. Procurement and Logistics have organized a 1 month stock for various areas such as labs and student activities. Please contact Procurement and Logistics at [medpurch@uottawa.ca] if you require masks. 
  • Due to increased activity by secondary school students on PMC grounds, PMC doors will be locked with card access only effective September 17 as a precautionary method. Please note that Protection has been dispatched for additional monitoring in the area as well.
  • Reminder: All equipment, such as chairs and tables, used in designated learning areas must be returned to its original place before leaving. Please note that this also includes cleaning supplies which must remain in the classroom or lab, as some supplies have already gone missing.
 
 
August 11, 2020 Update

 

Phase 2 - Return2Research

Though COVID-19 has been a challenge to all our research and educational programs, we thank everyone for their cooperation in challenging times.  Because of you and your team’s adaptability, patience and compliance with Phase 1.5 Return to Research (R2R) plan, we are excited to announce that we can now fully migrate into Phase 2. 

Phase 2 of R2R will remain based on a maximum on-site occupancy of approved research staff of 33% at any one time at RGN and PMC with each lab allowed to have up to 66% of their staff on-site over the course of a day.  All previous guidelines remain in place, but we are pleased to announce, that starting immediately you can onboard new staff, graduate students and PDF, including those without previous uOttawa training.  If COVID-19 levels in Ottawa region remain manageable, our goal is to start allowing undergraduate students back into the labs in September and over the fall months, gradually increasing our onsite capacity to 90%. 

If you intend to hire new staff during Phase 2 – you must fill out the R2R Phase 2 new staff form, collect CHECKLIST (Appendix 2) for all new staff and forward documents to your basic science chair and to Research Office (resmed@uOttawa.ca). (contact the RO for these documents resmed@uottawa.ca)   For Members of KRC and NRI, they must also send their new staff form to Rashmi Kothary (rkothary@ohri.ca) and Tammy Troy (ttroy@ohri.ca).    Remember all new staff must complete all mandatory and lab-specific training, including the new COVID19 training module.  It is also the supervisor’s responsibility to ensure all their team are aware and compliant with COVID19 Return 2 Research Protocols.

Once your new staff have been on-boarded, the Research Office will provide you with a new NOD outlining your labs:

  • Weekly total of # staff allowed on site based on 7 days
  • Maximum total # of staff allowed on site each day
  • Maximum # of staff allowed onsite at any one time

 

Please note – if you are not on-boarding staff you do not need to submit any information and your previous Phase1.5 NOD remains in effect.

As seen from last week’s report of a confirmed case of COVID-19 at RGN, we need to remain vigilant.  We would like to take this opportunity to remind you of the safety protocols in place regarding COVID-19 on campus: 

  • Wearing masks is now mandatory in all enclosed public spaces. This includes indoor common spaces on our campus, such as hallways, lobbies, stairways, washrooms, elevators and rooms / labs with greater than 1 person. 
  • Everyone working on campus is expected to observe standard COVID-19 precautionary guidelines including frequent hand washing, maintaining physical distance, wearing a mask, and following directional signage.
  • Please remember that everyone has a responsibility to clean common/shared equipment before and after their use thereof.
  • Before coming to work each day, employees who work on campus are to complete a health self-evaluation on the Ontario Public Health website.  Self-assessment
  • It is the onus of the PI to schedule their research staff accordingly to ensure a maximum 33% occupancy in their lab at one time and ensure that physical distancing or mask wearing is adhered to (eg 1 researcher / bay) within their assigned spaces.  A record of the schedule must be kept for 14 days if it is ever required for contact tracing by health authorities.
  • In addition to the above measures, you may wish to download the COVID Alert app, which was recently launched by the Government of Canada to notify individuals if they have been in close proximity to someone diagnosed with COVID-19.

With the start of the school year fast approaching, we will see a growing number of people returning to our campus.  With your help, we hope to continue ensuring that our campus is not only as safe as possible for our Faculty of Medicine community, but that research continues to thrive and grow.  We will be reassessing the situation in early fall, with the intention of further growing capacity on site over the fall and winter.

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