COVID-19 latest information for students and staff

Update 3 August 2021

Key Developments

Following enquiries from students and staff, I write to provide further clarification on the NSW ‘Stay at Home’ order for any person in NSW who has been to one of the 11 locked down South East Queensland LGA’s since 21 July.

The  ‘stay at home’ order applies for 14 days (from when you were last in one of the affected LGAs) or until the order is revoked. It also applies to any other member of your household regardless of whether they have been in an affected SE QLD LGA.

However, it is important to note that under the ‘Stay at Home’ order, you are allowed to leave home if you have a reasonable excuse, which includes work or education that cannot be done from home.

Therefore if you are already in NSW and approved to come on campus in NSW, or scheduled to go on placement in NSW, you are allowed to do so.

The following link provides further detail on the ‘stay at home’ requirements. 
www.health.nsw.gov.au/news/Pages/20210731_03 

A reminder that if you experience any COVID systems, please get tested immediately and stay home until you get a negative result.

Thank you for your flexibility as we respond to this situation.

Allan Morris
Vice President, Operations


Update 2 August 2021

The QLD Govt has today announced 15 new COVID cases and consequently extended the current lockdown that currently applies to 11 Local Government Areas (LGA’s) including Brisbane and the Gold Coast until 4pm Sunday 8th August

As a result of this announcement, the Gold Coast Campus will not re-open until 8am on Monday 9th August subject to COVID conditions at the time. The only people allowed on campus will be the security guards and all buildings will be locked from student or staff card access.

The full details of the lockdown restrictions can be found at:
www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19 

A reminder that anyone who has been to one of the 11 SEQ LGA’s since 21 July and has returned to NSW is under a ‘stay at home’ order for 14 days (from when they were last in one of the affected LGAs) or until the order is revoked. The following link provides further detail on the ‘stay at home’ requirements. 
www.health.nsw.gov.au/news/Pages/20210731_03 


Update 31 August 2021

The QLD Government has today announced a snap lockdown from 4pm today (Saturday 31 July) that applies to 11 Local Government Areas including Gold Coast and Brisbane.

In announcing the lockdown, the Deputy Premier, Mr. Steven Miles, said it will be the strictest lockdown Queensland has ever had and is expected to be in place until 4pm this coming Tuesday, 3rd August.

As a result of this announcement, the Gold Coast Campus will close and re-open at 8am on Wednesday 4th August subject to the lockdown being lifted late Tuesday afternoon. The only people allowed on campus will be the security guards and all buildings will be locked from student or staff card access.

Where teaching activities intended for the week are disrupted by this lockdown, the relevant faculty will be in touch to plan appropriate adjustments. Students on placement will receive a separate email from their Faculty and  any questions relating to impacts on clinical placements should be directed to faculty professional experience units.

The full details of the lockdown restrictions can be found at:
www.qld.gov.au/health/conditions/health-alerts/coronavirus-covid-19 

The COVID situation in NSW remains a critical concern with 239 new cases reported today and the lockdown extended to Saturday 28th August which is beyond our previously planned return to campus date of Monday 23rd August.

In addition to the lockdown extension, the NSW Government has announced restrictions in Regional NSW remain unchanged.


Update 29 July 2021

The QLD Government has also extended the requirements for masks to be worn in SE QLD by a further week until Friday August 6th.

It is also the case that a great number of our Gold Coast students and staff live across the border in Northern New South Wales. With the QLD/NSW border now closed to most of NSW, there are long delays for those seeking to cross the border. This makes timely access to the campus extremely difficult.

Taking all the above into consideration, coupled with our desire to provide as much certainty as possible regarding our mode of learning and working, we have decided to remain in a ‘study/work from home’ mode until the end of Session 2, being Friday 1st October for students and staff at the Lismore, Coffs Harbour and Gold Coast campuses, with attendance on campus limited to essential activity only. Essential student activity primarily includes practicals and lab work that cannot be done online. For these activities, students will be contacted directly by their faculty. Staff and HDRT students undertaking research that can only be done on Campus need to inform their Associate Dean of Research or Higher Degree Research Director that they will be undertaking such work. (See recent Faculty of Health announcements below)

The University Libraries and Student Hubs will remain open in a scaled back capacity but we encourage students to engage online with those services where ever possible.

Subject to COVID conditions allowing it, the University expects to return to normal campus activity from Monday 4th October starting with the beginning of the exam period on Tuesday 5th October, O-Week on Monday 25th October and the commencement of Session 3 on Monday 1st November.

A reminder that the following restrictions also continue to apply in NSW and QLD:

  • The Service NSW app is required to check in and out of our Lismore and Coffs Harbour campuses.
  • The Check In Qld app is required to check in at our Gold Coast campuse.
  • Masks must be worn indoors, including workplaces, across all of NSW. This includes Coffs Harbour and Lismore campuses.
  • Masks must be worn indoors in SE QLD until 6am on Friday 6th August

The University has also implemented the following rules in regards to masks.

  • Masks must be worn indoors at all campuses except when you are alone in a room or office.
  • Masks must be worn outdoors when within 1.5m of other individuals, while working in an outdoor area, and when next to food and drink premises such as queuing outside a café.
  • Masks must be worn when travelling for SCU related purposes in a vehicle with other individuals. If travelling alone, a mask does not need to be worn inside the vehicle.
  • Masks can be temporarily removed when eating or drinking.

Where a face mask cannot be worn, an alternate must be found to ensure the safety of the individual as well as all those around them. All alternate face mask options must be determined following consultation with the Faculty or Head of Work Unit as well as the Workplace Health and Safety team.

This is a University decision to protect the health and safety of all our visitors, students and staff.

We deeply appreciate your efforts to comply with the public health orders and the understanding you have of the University’s desire to keep these important decisions uniform across all campuses, in two very different state jurisdictions. Given how interconnected our campuses are this is necessary for appropriate risk management and clear communication.

Further information regarding the current restrictions across NSW are available here:
https://www.nsw.gov.au/covid-19/rules/what-you-can-do-nsw 

Students and Staff residing in Queensland can find further information here:
https://www.qld.gov.au/health/travelling-to-queensland 

Thank you for your flexibility as we respond to this situation.


Health Students

COVID-19 vaccination requirements for clinical placements 

Recent update from the Dean of Health:
What’s changed from 4pm AEST 31 July 2021

Students are not permitted to attend their placement for the next 7 days if:

  • the placement facility (public or private) is within the 11 South-East Queensland LGAs entering the 3-day lockdown listed below
  • or they travelled from or were in one of the 11 South-East Queensland LGAs between 1am 30 July and 4pm on 31 July.

11 South-East Queensland LGAs

  • Noosa
  • Sunshine Coast
  • Ipswich
  • Logan
  • Redlands
  • Moreton Bay
  • Brisbane
  • Gold Coast
  • Scenic Rim
  • Lockyer Valley
  • Somerset

Please continue to monitor your SCU email for updates and advice and refer to the Qld Health website for additional information Queensland Health - Clinical Placements - What's new.

If you have any questions please email peuteamleader@scu.edu.au, including your name, discipline and mobile phone number and we will contact you as soon as possible.

See all Dean of Health notifications

Julie Jomeen
Dean of Health

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.