This COVID-19 Reopening Plan is intended for Lincoln University faculty, staff, and students to ensure the cleanliness and safety of our Campus and to provide a strategy to safely increase in-person instruction, student services, and other College operations. Certain areas of the College, including some instruction, have remained open and continued face-to-face throughout the COVID-19 Pandemic. The Reopening of Lincoln University (LU), or in essence the increased opening of LU, (hereinafter “Reopening”) requires all of us to move forward together by practicing social distancing and other recommended daily habits to reduce our risk of exposure to the virus that causes COVID-19, and supporting faculty, staff and students in obtaining, and understanding the benefits of, a vaccination.
Reopening LU also strongly relies on recommended city, state and federal, public health strategies, including encouraging vaccination, continued testing of people for the virus, social distancing, isolation, and keeping track of how someone infected might have infected other people via contact tracing. LU is following the Centers for Disease Control and Pennsylvania Department of Health guidelines. Additionally, LU will work with local public health officials from the Chester County Health Department on local recommendations and health monitoring.
This plan is only part of the overall reopening actions being taken by LU and focuses on building operations strategies to reduce potential infections, provide guidance on social distancing, how access to our buildings is being controlled, and our enhanced cleaning and disinfection protocols.
SARS-CoV-2 Virus (COVID-19)
The novel coronavirus, known as SARS-CoV-2, is a virus that causes a respiratory illness known as COVID-19.
According to the Centers for Disease Control (CDC), person-to-person transmission of the virus primarily occurs during close (within 3 feet), unprotected, contact with a person with COVID-19 from respiratory droplets produced when an infected person coughs, sneezes, or talks. These droplets, particularly when aerosolized, can be inhaled into the lungs, or deposited in the mouth, nose, or eyes of nearby people. Airborne transmission from person-to-person over long distances (i.e., through HVAC systems) is believed to be unlikely.
People can also become infected with SARS-CoV-2 by touching surfaces or objects contaminated with the virus, and then touching their mouths, noses, or eyes. Current evidence suggests that this virus may remain viable for hours to days on a variety of surfaces. Frequent cleaning of visibly dirty and high-touch surfaces, followed by disinfection, should decrease SARS-CoV-2 and other respiratory pathogens (germs) from spreading.
Person-to-person spread is likely to continue to occur under current pandemic conditions. There is still more to learn about the transmissibility, severity, and other features associated with SARS-CoV-2.
Lower Exposure Risk (Caution)
OSHA defines activities as Lower Exposure Risk that do not require close contact with people known to be, or suspected of being, infected with SARS-CoV-2. Workers in this category have minimal contact with the general public and other coworkers. Examples include:
- Office employees, faculty, or students who do not have frequent close contact (within 6 feet, unprotected, for greater than 15 minutes throughout the workday) with coworkers, students, or the public.
Medium Exposure Risk
Activities that require frequent/close contact with people who may be infected, but who are not known to have or suspected of having COVID-19 include:
- Those who have frequent close contact (within 3 feet, unprotected, for greater than 15 minutes throughout the workday) with coworkers, students, or the public.
It is the goal of LU to minimize job functions that may require close contact with people who may be infected. Situations that require close contact will be evaluated on a case-by-case basis (i.e., nursing, performing arts, etc.) and additional administrative, engineering, or personal protective equipment has been provided.
There are currently no known situations where LU faculty, staff, or students should be required to be in close contact with any persons known to have COVID-19 (i.e., High or Very High Exposure Risk). As part of the implementation of this COVID-19 Reopening Plan, ongoing risk assessments will be completed, and job duties evaluated to ensure the majority of faculty, staff, and students remain in the Lower Risk Category. Specifically, the majority of faculty teaching face to face classes, other than a few classes which may require closer or direct contact, will remain in the Lower Risk Category.