Campus Reopening Project - Frequently Asked Questions - All Audiences
Yes, campus events can be hosted in accordance with the latest employee and student event protocol (you will need to highlight, copy & paste the link(s) in your browser).
AU Health is only administering the Pfizer vaccine (whether it be your first, second or booster dose).
A COVID-19 test can be scheduled by calling 706-721-1852 or talk with a provider regarding symptoms by utilizing the AU Health Virtual Care app or website.
Community Covid-19 Testing
AU Health has partnered with Georgia Department of Public Health (DPH) to increase COVID-19 testing capacity by increasing testing days and hours of operation.
Starting on Wednesday, Sept. 1, a DPH-contracted lab, LTS, will assume operations at AU Health’s drive-thru location at 524 15th St. in Augusta. The testing location will be open Monday-Saturday from 9 a.m. until 3 p.m.
LTS offers online scheduling for PCR testing. Patients will be able to schedule a COVID test exclusively through this registration website and will no longer be available through the AU Health COVID hotline. LTS will return results within 24-48 hours and deliver to the patient via text message and email, which are linked to LTS’s online patient portal. Lab results will not appear in the AU Health VIP patient portal.
Employee Covid-19 Testing
AU Health will continue to test employees to ensure timely turnaround time of results. Employees should call Employee Health at 706-721-3418 and choose Option 1 to schedule a test.
Adult and Pediatric Pre-Procedural Testing
AU Health pre-procedural testing will continue to be coordinated through the surgery schedulers and will be coordinated through the MOB lab and pediatric department, respectively.
**You are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated..**
Hours of Operation for 2021 Fall Semester:
Monday - Thursday: 6am to 10pm
Friday: 6am - 9pm
Saturday 10am - 6pm
Sunday 1pm - 6pm
For more details, visit their website: https://www.augusta.edu/campus-recreation/campus-recreation-center/index.php
For Greenblatt and Reese library operating hours & chat hours - please visit https://augusta.libcal.com/hours/
As of August 11, 2021, new CDC Data says: COVID-19 Vaccination Safe while Pregnant or Breastfeeding
Wearing masks is strongly encouraged indoors regardless of COVID-19 vaccination status.
Face coverings are required for all faculty/staff/students who utilize our shuttle transportation.
Face masks are strongly encouraged in all university facilities/buildings, regardless of vaccination status.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, people who have been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19 are not required to quarantine if they have been fully vaccinated against the disease and show no symptoms. However, the CDC recommends those individuals wear a mask and test within 3-5 days. Face coverings should continue to be worn for 14 days from exposure or until proof of a negative test result.
In-state travel is now allowed in accordance with USG policies as well as other domestic travel with support from Deans and VPs (pre-COVID protocols):
There are no restrictions for travel to, from, or within Georgia. Those traveling are strongly encouraged to follow public health safety measures (https://georgia.gov/covid-19-coronavirus-georgia/covid-19-travel-restrictions).
On 7/14/21 this notification was also sent by USG: The State of Georgia is no longer under a non-essential travel ban. Therefore, travel may resume under your institution’s travel policies. All travel should be necessary for official business reasons. Additionally, travelers should continue to follow health notices outlined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
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- Out-of-country travel which is academically related or credit bearing for all AU students only (e.g., Study Abroad or independent student travel which earns AU academic credit) must be reviewed & approved by the AVP for International Initiatives and the Vice Provost for Instruction.
- All other out-of-country travel (faculty/staff) that carries with it the support (actual or implied) of AU must be reviewed by unit leadership and the college dean before seeking the approval of the EVP.
International academic travel allowed for spring term ONLY (e.g., study abroad) when the state department assessment is 3 or below and only after review and in accordance with local standards (e.g., what are the expectations of the hosting country for accepting visitors). https://travel.state.gov/content/travel/en/international-travel/International-Travel-Country-Information-Pages.html
Please note that departments will have to stay within their existing travel budget for domestic and international travel.
BE MINDFUL of COVID REQUIREMENTS of OTHER COUNTRIES
(For academic and personal travel outside the US.)
♦As a first step in planning any trip abroad, check the Travel Advisories for your intended destination. https://travelmaps.state.gov/TSGMap/
♦Many countries have their own COVID requirements. The US government requires a negative COVID test upon re-entry.
See the order per CDC here: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/travelers/testing-international-air-travelers.html
♦CDC guidelines for both vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who need to travel internationally:
Faculty and staff are expected to notify their supervisor if they have tested positive or are suspected to have COVID-19. Employees are to immediately report such suspected and confirmed COVID-19 illness at Augusta University to: REPORTCOVID@augusta.edu;or call University HR at 706-446-4457. Supervisors must report the case if their employee is not able to do so directly. You may also call this number if you are concerned about a potential exposure and would like guidance on whether to self-isolate or quarantine.
Please refer to state travel guidance and restrictions. According to the state guidance, all air passengers entering the United States from abroad are required to test negative for COVID-19.
The Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine consists of a single shot, while both the Pfizer and Moderna vaccines consists of two doses with 21 and 28 days between each, respectively. According to the CDC, persons should not be scheduled to receive the second dose earlier than recommended i.e. three weeks for Pfizer and one month for Moderna. However, second doses administered within a grace period of four days earlier than the recommended date for the second dose are still considered valid. Doses inadvertently administered earlier than the grace period should not be repeated.
The second dose should be administered as close to the recommended interval as possible. However, if it is not feasible to adhere to the recommended interval, the second dose of Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna COVID-19 vaccines may be scheduled for administration up to 6 weeks (42 days) after the first dose. There are currently limited data on efficacy of mRNA COVID-19 vaccines administered beyond this window. If the second dose is administered beyond these intervals, there is no need to restart the series.
No. At this time the vaccine will not be mandated for Augusta University faculty, staff or students.
Also, at this time the vaccine will not be mandated for AU Health staff.
Please note that the COVID-19 vaccine does not currently fall under the AU Health seasonal vaccination policy or vaccine recommendations for health care workers policy. AU Health reviews these policies on a routine basis and may include a COVID-19 requirement in the future. Applicable laws do allow for exemptions in some cases.
Your body recognizes the invading germ (virus or bacteria). Proteins (antibodies) are produced which are naturally made by the immune system to fight disease. The antibodies are trained to remember the disease and how to fight it, so if you are exposed to the germ again your immune system can quickly destroy it before you become sick.
Side effects have been known to last 1-3 days.
In the case of the COVID-19 vaccine, it appears the immune response you receive from vaccination is better than that of the natural infection. Therefore, the vaccine is recommended for those who have already been infected with COVID-19. It would be better to wait three months after getting COVID-19 until receiving the vaccine.
The vaccine should not be given when someone is acutely ill, but once healthy, we do recommend the vaccine three months after recovering from COVID-19.
It typically takes a few weeks for the body to build immunity after vaccination. That means it's possible a person could be infected with the virus that causes COVID-19 just before or just after vaccination and get sick. Experts also don’t yet know how long immunity lasts after receiving the COVID-19 vaccine. Again, all Augusta University employees and student should follow the protocols for exposure, even after receiving the second dose of the vaccination.
"The Red Cross is following FDA blood donation eligibility guidance for those who receive a COVID-19 vaccination, and deferral times may vary depending on the type of vaccine an individual receives." Please see further details at the Red Cross website under the heading COVID-19 Vaccine and Blood Donor Eligibility Information.
Side effects are seen in about 25-30% of individuals that take the vaccine. These include fatigue, low grade fevers, joint and muscle pains, and pain at the injection site. These generally last from 1- 3 days and resolve on their own. Rare anaphylactoid reactions have occurred in those with a severe history of allergies. No serious adverse effects have been reported otherwise.
If a COVID-19 case is identified in your area, Environmental Services will provide additional disinfection of spaces where the individual spent time on campus prior to the onset of symptoms or their positive test. The process for requesting disinfection services varies based on that individual’s role on campus:
- Augusta University employees and non-university employees that work in campus buildings (i.e. AU Health or AUMA employees): The cleaning process is triggered when a case is reported to REPORTCOVID@augusta.edu.
- Augusta University students: The cleaning process is triggered when a student self-reports to REPORTSTUDENTCOVID@augusta.edu. .
- If the individual is on campus when they develop symptoms, it is recommended that affected areas be closed off until EVS can provide disinfection services, if at all possible. If the COVID-19 positive individual has not been on campus on the day that they develop symptoms or receive their positive test result there is no need to close off any campus areas other than that individual’s personal office or cubicle space. The high-touch points in the public areas of the building and in the departmental spaces should already have been disinfected by the combined efforts of Environmental Services and department staff as indicated in the preceding guidance. Environmental Services will provide additional disinfection of affected spaces once they receive the disinfection request.
- Product selection: It is important to select a cleaning product that is effective for use against SARS-CoV-2. All products distributed by Facilities and used by EVS meet this requirement. If purchasing additional products, please choose one from the EPA List N: https://www.epa.gov/pesticide-registration/list-n-disinfectants-use-against-sars-cov-2-covid-19.
- Follow the label: When using an EPA-registered disinfectant, follow the label directions for safe, effective use. Make sure to follow the contact time, the amount of time the surface should be visibly wet in order to be effective, listed in the List N table and indicated on the label. Note that these products are for use on surfaces, NOT on humans. Please review the EPA reference for safe and effective disinfectant use: https://www.epa.gov/sites/production/files/2020-04/documents/disinfectants-onepager.pdf.
- If you have questions: Please contact the Biological Safety Office at 706-721-2663 or BIOSAFETY@augusta.edu if you have any questions or concerns about disinfection products or procedures.
Vending machines will be wiped down by cleaning staff multiple times per day.
Last Updated: September 17, 2021