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    CORONAVIRUS (COVID-19): FAQS2020-03-10 23:12:13

    Is the University open for business?

    In line with official public health advice, University of the West of Scotland has a robust approach in place, to monitor and mitigate the impact of coronavirus. All UWS campuses remain fully open and operational and the University continues to take sensible precautions.

    How has the University been preparing?

    Colleagues have been monitoring and responding to the situation closely since January, in line with official guidance from Health Protection Scotland, Health Protection England, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and other relevant agencies. We continue to be guided by NHS public health advice.

    Where can I find latest national official information and guidance?

    Please check NHS InformHealth Protection Scotland, the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and NHS Fit for Travel for updates and further information.

    What guidance is there for travellers from Category 1 / Category 2 risk areas?

    Travellers who have returned from or travelled through a Category 1 or Category 2 risk area can visit the NHS Inform website for official advice. You can also visit the UKCISA information page. The University also operates a robust travel risk assessment process on a case-by-case basis for any member of the University community traveling on University business. Please contact colleagues in Resilience & Safety for guidance on this process, via resilienceandsafety@uws.ac.uk.

    Is there anything I can personally do to help?

    Simple measures like thorough hand-washing, coughing or sneezing into tissues and disposing of them, and following any individual advice provided by medical professionals, are all key factors that everybody can do to play their part limiting the spread of coronavirus. NHS Inform provides a range of guidance, including on how to avoid catching infections.

    What happens if coronavirus affects my immigration status?

    Home Office helpline has been set up: please note, officials can only speak to the visa holder or applicant about their specific query. If you are a third party (for example, family member or sponsor) and wish to speak on their behalf, officials must have the visa holder’s permission. The UKCISA website also has useful updates on how the Coronavirus may affect your immigration permission.

    I have further questions about coronavirus – what should I do?

    Visit NHS Inform, or call the new national coronavirus helpline free on 0800 028 2816.

    I am aware a person from the University’s Lanarkshire Campus is a confirmed case. I am still concerned about attending the Campus what reassurances can you give?

    In line with Public Health advice, all UWS campuses remain fully open and operational, and students and staff are expected to attend as normal. 

    As confirmed in the joint communication issued to staff and students on 8 March 2020 from the University and NHS Lanarkshire, the person concerned had limited contact with a small group of individuals at the University. All have been contacted, are well and have no symptoms.

    If you are looking for further guidance, a national free national Coronavirus helpline has been set up on 0800 028 2816, or you can contact NHS 24 on 111.

    I have a relative/friend with a pre-existing health condition and as such I don’t wish to attend any UWS campuses. What should I do?

    In line with Public Health advice, all UWS campuses remain fully open and operational and the University continues to take sensible precautions – and students and staff should attend as normal. 

    If you are looking for further guidance about a specific health concern, a national free national Coronavirus helpline has been set up on 0800 028 2816 or you can contact NHS 24 on 111.

    For staff, please consult the University’s absence management procedure and, for students, please consult the academic engagement and attendance procedure.

    I have a pre-existing health condition and as such I don’t wish to attend any UWS campuses. What should I do?

    In line with Public Health advice, all UWS campuses remain fully open and operational, and students and staff are expected to attend as normal. 

    Students should contact hub@uws.ac.uk in the first instance with any queries. Staff should speak to their line managers in the first instance with any queries.

    If you are looking for further guidance about a specific health concern, a national free national Coronavirus helpline has been set up on 0800 028 2816 or you can contact NHS 24 on 111.

    FOR STUDENTS

    If I have to self-isolate or can’t travel, will this be considered under the extenuating circumstances procedure?

    Students can apply for extenuating circumstances if you are advised to self-isolate following consultation with public health/NHS professionals, or if you are unable to attend an assessment due to travel restrictions. Students who are advised to self-isolate should email or call their Department or School.

    However, all UWS campuses remain fully open and operational and the University continues to take sensible precautions.

    If I choose to self-isolate – but have not been advised to do so by Public Health or other NHS professionals – will this be considered under the extenuating circumstances procedure?

    We advise that you should only self-isolate if required to in line with current public advice and/or as directed by medical professionals. If you choose to self-isolate when you're not advised to, please email hub@uws.ac.uk to let them know.  It may be helpful for you to review our extenuating circumstancesprocedure.

    Will my exams be cancelled?

    At present there are no plans to cancel exams; however, we will continue to follow official government and public health guidance in all things related to COVID-19. If public health advise that students should not attend closed examinations, you will be contacted with information about how you will be assessed on your achievement in your modules. This might vary depending on what you are studying but we are committed to ensuring the validity of your assessment, as well as protecting our students.

    What would happen if I was unable to sit my exams/assessments/placements, either because I am self-isolating, or exams/assessments/placements have not been able to take place?

    Our assessment regulations do allow boards of examiners to exercise discretion in coming to a decision on student progression and on degree classification where not all of the work has been able to be assessed.

    We would ensure no student would be disadvantaged under these arrangements.

    I’ve just arrived at University/relocated and am not registered with a local doctor: what should I do?

    Registering with a General Practitioner (GP) is a straightforward process. NHS Inform has information to help you find your nearest doctor and register with them quickly. Meanwhile, if you develop any symptoms outlined above or feel unwell, contact NHS24 by dialling 111.

    I’m an international student – do you have any specific advice for me?

    If you’re concerned about your Tier 4 status, please visit the UKCISA information page.

    I’m a student with a question that isn’t answered in these FAQs: whom can I contact?

    If you have read through the information contained on the University’s coronavirus update page and in the FAQs, and still feel you would like to contact us, please email hub@uws.ac.uk.

    FOR STAFF

    If I’ve been advised to self-isolate following consultation with public health/NHS professionals: what should I do? Will I get sick pay?

    If you are advised to self-isolate, your absence would be treated as sickness absence in the usual way and in line with the Absence Management Procedure. Therefore, if someone is advised to self-isolate by public health/NHS, then it will be treated as sickness absence. Any staff member who is self-isolating will be asked to self-certificate for a week, then produce a statement of fitness for work from your GP for the second week, as per normal absence management procedures.

    I don’t have a diagnosis or any symptoms but am concerned about going to work: what should I do?

    In line with official public health guidance, all UWS campuses remain fully open and operational and the University continues to take sensible precautions. Please discuss any specific concerns with your line manager in the first instance.

    I have a dependent who’s been advised to self-isolate: what should I do?

    Please contact your line-manager and inform them of the situation, in order to make any necessary arrangements. We have established procedures to deal with family emergencies. You can find the University’s family friendly procedures here.

    Are there any plans to allow staff to work from home?

    While there are currently no plans to implement a broad work-from-home policy, this position will be reviewed regularly in line with guidance from the government and our partners.

    I also have another job with another employer, as I have attended the Lanarkshire Campus recently is it safe for me to do my other job?

    In line with Public Health advice, all UWS campuses remain fully open and operational and the University continues to take sensible precautions – and students and staff should attend as normal. 

    If you are looking for further guidance about a specific health concern, a national free national Coronavirus helpline has been set up on 0800 028 2816 or you can contact NHS 24 on 111.

    
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