Scroll back to the top

COVID-19 Reporting Process

Published on Mon 07/20/20

To help prevent the spread of COVID-19 across our campus communities, Texas A&M University is implementing the reporting process outlined below for students, faculty, and staff and launching a new online reporting system that centralizes the reporting of COVID-19 illness or exposure to the COVID-19 Investigation Operations Center (Operations Center).  The Operations Center was established as part of a collaboration with the Brazos County Health District (BCHD) with the aim of augmenting contact tracing efforts in the Brazos Valley area.

 

The Operations Center is staffed with Texas A&M faculty, personnel employed by the BCHD, and a team of A&M System employees responsible for contacting and interviewing individuals who have either tested positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact to someone with COVID-19.  This process will allow the university to provide guidance and resources to those that are affected, determine if others are exposed, and assess the impact of the virus in our campus. The BCHD team is responsible for contacting and interviewing residents of Brazos County, including Texas A&M students and employees. The System team is responsible for contacting and interviewing Texas A&M students and employees who reside outside of Brazos County (including those at other System members that have chosen to use the Operations Center).

 

By adhering to the following reporting processes and protocols, students, faculty, and staff will help maintain the confidentiality of personal and medical information as required by applicable laws and enhance the health and safety of our campus communities.
 

GENERAL REPORTING GUIDELINES FOR EMPLOYEES AND STUDENTS


Employee: If you are an employee, you must stay home, immediately notify your supervisor, and complete the COVID-19 Report Form (by selecting “Self” when asked who is making this report) if:

  • You have been diagnosed with or received a positive test result for COVID-19;
  • You are experiencing any COVID-19 symptoms (as listed on the CDC website); or 
  • You believe that you have been in close contact (defined as being within 6 feet for at least 15 minutes regardless of wearing a face covering) with someone who has or is suspected to have COVID-19, or someone in your household has been diagnosed with or received a positive test result for COVID-19.


Student: If you are a student, you must stay home and immediately complete the COVID-19 Report Form (by selecting “Self” when asked who is making this report) if:

  • You have been diagnosed with or received a positive test result for COVID-19;
  • You are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms (as listed on the CDC website); or 
  • You believe that you have been in close contact (defined as being within 6 feet for at least 15 minutes regardless of wearing a face covering) with someone who has or is suspected to have COVID-19, or someone in your household (including a roommate or housemate) has been diagnosed with or received a positive test result for COVID-19.


Student Employee: If you are a student employee who works on campus, you must follow the steps above and also immediately notify your work supervisor.

 

Students or employees who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact to someone with COVID-19 will be contacted by a member of the Operations Center to conduct an interview, provide specific guidance, answer questions about COVID-19, and initiate contact tracing.  Students who suspect that they may have COVID-19 are also encouraged to contact Student Health Services or their preferred health care provider for health advice.

 

SUPERVISORS AND FACULTY

 

If you are a supervisor or faculty member, you must follow the steps outlined above for “Employee” and you must also take the steps shown below when notified directly by an employee or student of any of the above listed COVID-19 criteria.  Faculty do NOT need to take these steps when a student provides them with a confirmation of a medical visit document or an absence of notification form.

  • Instruct the person to go home immediately or stay at home, practice self-isolation, and complete the COVID-19 Report Form by selecting “Self”;
  • Immediately report any information provided by the individual through the COVID-19 Report Form by selecting “Supervisor”; 
  • Encourage the person to seek medical attention (if they have not already done so); 
  • Inform the person that a member of the Operations Center will contact them to provide them with information and resources, and to initiate contact tracing, if necessary; and
  • Encourage the person to fully cooperate with the Operations Center’s contact tracing efforts.


Supervisors and faculty should not relay any medical information, such as a diagnosis or symptoms, about employees to any other person.  Supervisors and faculty may advise relevant personnel that the employee may be absent from work.

 

Supervisors, faculty, and unit heads are not required to contact SSC to arrange cleaning of workspaces.  Cleaning, if required, will be directed by the COVID-19 Reporting Committee, led by the Office of Risk, Ethics, and Compliance (OREC).  Such information will be provided in a de-identified form to Texas A&M Facilities Services and the department head or principal investigator, as appropriate.

 

Supervisors and faculty should use the following script when notified by an employee or student of any of the above listed COVID-19 criteria: 

 

I am instructing you to leave work or school immediately or stay at home. You are required to self-report via the COVID-19 Report Form by selecting “Self” when asked who is making this report. 

 

You should stay away from others, including your own household members (including roommates or housemates) if possible. Early symptoms of COVID-19 are similar to other illnesses, and some people do not have symptoms at all. The first few days of infection are symptom free. Please remember that COVID-19 can be spread unknowingly by someone who is not aware that they are infected, such as in the first few days of infection.

 

I am required to refer your basic information to the COVID-19 Investigations and Operations Center so that they can provide you with information and resources and initiate contact tracing, if necessary. For contact tracing, they will need you to provide a list of names and contact information (phone/email addresses) for all persons you think you were in close contact with, including family members, roommates/housemates, co-workers, and others. This will allow the Operations Center to provide your contacts with information and resources, such as testing, and answer their own questions about COVID-19.  The Operations Center may also instruct you to be tested for COVID-19. Please expect to be contacted by the Operations Center, be ready to provide the requested information, and respond as soon as possible so they can help stop the spread of COVID-19. 


CONTACT TRACING

The Operations Center will handle contact tracing by contacting students, faculty, and staff who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have been in close contact to someone with COVID-19 to provide guidance on self-quarantine or self-isolation, ask about close contacts and notify those contacts, if necessary, provide recommendations and resources (e.g., testing and isolation guidelines), and promote best practices.  The COVID-19 Reporting Committee will have access to the information reported through the COVID-19 Report Forms and will coordinate with key campus offices to contain the spread of the disease while also protecting the confidentiality of the affected individual’s information to the extent possible. 


If any questions regarding this COVID-19 reporting process, contact COVID19Process@tamu.edu.