COVID-19 latest information for students and staff

The COVID-19 vaccination is now available for eligible persons at the SCU Health Clinic Lismore.

To get the COVID-19 vaccine please book an appointment by calling 02 6626 9131.

Key Developments

Updated 24 February 2022

  • All staff return to campus from Monday 28 February, 2022
  • Masks are not required in NSW when staff return to campus
  • Masks are not required in QLD after 6pm on Friday 4 March 2022
  • The University continues to operate in conjunction with the relevant Public Health Orders
  • Health and safety risks continue to be closely monitored by the University’s Critical Incident Team
  • Orientation begins on 1 March and will be held mostly online

FAQs for returning staff members

Has my work area and office been cleaned?

Yes, cleaning arrangements have continued throughout the most recent working from home period. Cleaning of high touch areas has also increased.

When are spaces and bathrooms cleaned?

Cleaning is completed on a daily basis by the University cleaners. Bathrooms and high touch areas are cleaned more frequently. Work Units are responsible for the cleaning of individual desks/equipment/lunch rooms and cleaning products for this can be sourced from the University Stores.

What equipment do I need to return to campus?

All University owned equipment (e.g. laptop, computer monitor, risers, keyboard, mouse, headset, office chair, foot rest, desk etc.) will need to be returned to campus. 

If I am working an approved hybrid arrangement, what equipment do I use?

Staff must ensure they have appropriate equipment and utilities to safely accommodate their work remotely. The University will not be responsible for any incurred expenses.

I am worried about COVID-19 and returning to campus. Can I continue to work/study from home?

The University is looking forward to welcoming everyone back on campus from 28 February and has undertaken significant planning and COVID risk management (increased cleaning, sanitisation stations etc.) to ensure it maintains a safe environment for all.

If you’re a vulnerable person who is more at risk of serious illness from COVID-19, please contact whs@scu.edu.au. You will be provided with a Return to Campus Medical Confirmation Form that will be completed together with your treating medical practitioner. The form will provide WHS and your manager with helpful medical recommendations for consideration to ensure your safety on campus. Once a completed form has been returned, WHS will work with your manager on options and next steps. Arrangements will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

If you live with a vulnerable person, please speak with your supervisor for advice in the first instance.


ON CAMPUS

Do I need to check in and out from buildings with a QR code?

No. QR code check in/out is no longer required except at cafes in QLD.

Do I need to use my staff swipe card to access buildings?

Where no card access was previously required, no, these buildings will return to normal access. If card access was required prior to Covid, then this will continue. 

How is the University ensuring ventilation is safe on campus?

All University campuses have appropriate and safe ventilation systems in place to ensure a safe place of study and work for all students, staff and visitors to our University.

The University’s air-conditioning providers are aware of the health advice relating to ventilation and COVID-19, including regular maintenance and inspections, increased outside air, and avoidance of only using recirculated air. In addition, the University, through an independent specialist engineer, has and continues to undertake a comprehensive review of mechanical systems to ensure the University is reaching and maintaining air quality and operating efficiency standards.

For specific room/area/system concerns, contact PropertyServices@scu.edu.au.

If possible, should I open windows in my office/work area?

No. Opening windows creates other issues such as mould which may create other health and safety issues.

For specific room/area/system concerns, contact PropertyServices@scu.edu.au.

Do I need to physically distance when on a University campus?

There is no Public Health Order requirement to physically distance on campus. Density limits (how many people can be in a room), have been removed in NSW and will be removed in QLD from 6pm on Friday 4 March 2022.

I share equipment with other people. What do I need to do?

Where possible, use individual equipment. Where this cannot be accommodated, equipment can be safely shared by ensuring users adequately clean the equipment before and after each use with suitable Therapeutic Goods Administration approved disinfectant products.

Is hand sanitiser available?

Yes, sanitiser stations have been installed across general use spaces on all University campuses.

How do I source COVID-19 hygiene products?

All Work Units are responsible for managing the supply of products available in their work areas. If your work area is running low on supplies, please ensure you alert your Head of Work Unit (HOWU) who can source COVID-19 hygiene and cleaning products, including sanitiser, from University Stores.

Do I need to wear a mask on campus?

  • Masks are not required in NSW when staff return to campus on Monday 28 February.
  • In QLD, masks will not be required after 6pm on Friday 4 March. Until then masks are required where you cannot maintain 1.5m physical distancing indoors.
  • If you are in an activity/location where a mask is required, and you have a current medical or other exemption, please speak with your supervisor.
  • You are required to be respectful of staff or students who choose to continue to wear a mask.

Are there any requirements when teaching in a classroom?

COVID-safe practices in the classroom are the same as anywhere else.

Scheduled teaching spaces are professionally cleaned daily. Disinfectant wipe dispensers are currently installed in all general teaching spaces. Staff and students will be able to wipe down their desks/chairs/study spaces before and after use with cleaning materials provided. The bamboo wipes are biodegradable. Wipes can be used for both hand sanitising and cleaning of desks/high touch surfaces. Please contact PropertyServices@scu.edu.au if restocking is required. Please use bins provided to dispose of all wipes and any face masks. 

Can I return to offering face-to-face consultations?

Yes. COVID-safe practices in consultations are the same as offices and teaching spaces. When planning a consultation, please consider:

  • Routinely offer online meetings where possible and suitable; and
  • Using the standard routine COVID-19 safety questions to ensure all attending are well before visiting campus for in-person consultations.

If you are concerned about the space, contact your supervisor in the first instance.

If I feel unwell, can I come on campus?

If you have COVID-19 symptoms, please do not come on campus. If you have been absent with COVID or COVID like symptoms, we ask that you undertake a negative Rapid Antigen Test (RAT) before returning to campus.

What should I do if a student or colleague appears unwell on campus?

You should always be empathetic. There are many factors that may lead to an individual being on campus even if they are unwell, and a cough or sneeze does not necessarily mean someone is sick. You should express concern about their health and remind them that support is available. If you feel someone is genuinely unwell and you are unable to convince them to leave class/campus, contact your supervisor or Security.

If I need a Rapid Antigen Test (RAT), where can I get one from?

RATs are now readily available through many local providers. You can also obtain PCR tests from testing clinics throughout the local community. If you require a RAT for essential work purposes, please contact whs@scu.edu.au

How will I be notified if someone tests positive to COVID-19?

Information on COVID-19 positive case locations will be included on the COVID-19: Positive Case Alerts site. This will be updated daily.


OTHER SUPPORT

What other support is available to me?

Staff

Manager

It is important to recognise that COVID-19 remains an active concern and consequently the University will continue to take the appropriate steps to ensure the health and safety of staff, students and visitors to our campuses.

If you need to contact the University because your situation is affected by COVID-19, please use this dedicated emailSCUAssist@scu.edu.au.