The University Policy Manual

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Communicable Disease

The University of North Carolina at Greensboro

  • (Approved by the Chancellor, October 12, 2015)

Purpose

Communicable diseases, those understood to have serious, deleterious effects on human health and which are transmitted and spread through various forms of human contact, can pose a considerable threat to the well-being of the university community. Examples of communicable diseases include, but are not limited to:

  • Hepatitis
  • AIDS
  • Measles
  • Meningitis
  • Mumps
  • Rubella
  • Influenza
  • Tuberculosis

Recognizing the serious implications of communicable diseases on campus, The University of North Carolina at Greensboro will:

  • Operate under the auspices of sound medical advice and practice based on current information.
  • Take into consideration the welfare of the campus community while respecting the privacy and needs of individuals.
  • Provide all members of the University community with educational opportunities that foster an understanding of disease transmission and prevention.
  • Provide appropriate, compassionate, and nondiscriminatory services for persons living with infectious disease(s).
  • Conform to North Carolina health laws concerning testing and immunization and require appropriate documentation of current immunizations for all students.

Scope

This policy applies to all faculty, staff, senior administrative officers, non-faculty EPA employees, SPA employees, students, guests, and other authorized individuals who are present on property owned, leased, managed, or operated by The University of North Carolina at Greensboro or any component, including departments, offices, centers, or similar.

Policy

The University will not unlawfully discriminate in policy or practice, including admissions and employment policies, against individuals who have, or are considered to be at risk for, communicable diseases. The University will be in full compliance with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) as it relates to those students and employees who have communicable diseases. Any university decisions ensuing from individuals’ health-related circumstances will be made in light of each unique instance, applicable confidentiality considerations, and relevant medical facts.

Confidentiality of medical records for those students who seek information about, obtain testing for, or receive treatment for certain communicable diseases from the Student Health Service is guaranteed by law. However, North Carolina law requires medical care providers to notify public health officials of newly confirmed cases of communicable diseases so that testing of contacts can be pursued. Student Health Services’ medical providers will not discuss a student's diagnosis with any other person without the explicit authorization of that student except as required by law. There is the possibility of disclosure in the event of a valid court order or subpoena from a court of competent jurisdiction. Students within the University community who have a communicable disease are encouraged to use the medical, psychological, and educational services afforded through Student Health Services and the Counseling Center. For those medical and psychological services that are not available on campus, appropriate referral will be made to community or regional service organizations.

The uncertain risk of infection posed by involvement in contact sports will be addressed by compliance with the appropriate best practices, regulatory requirements, and accreditation requirements for competitive athletics, intramural athletics, and club sports.

Occupational safety and health standards mandated under federal and state law with regard to the transmission of blood-borne pathogens will be fully adhered to in an effort to prevent transmission of disease in classrooms, laboratories, and work spaces. This compliance will be coordinated through the Department of Environmental Health and Safety.

When necessary, isolating the infected person(s) and/or quarantining their contacts shall be enacted in accordance with North Carolina Health Department guidelines and within the University’s emergency plans.

The Director of Student Health Services will administer this policy. Any actions undertaken pursuant to this policy will be in accordance with applicable federal and state laws, UNCG policies and in the best interest of all parties. The Director of Student Health Services will also act as spokesperson for the campus regarding all communicable disease policy-related decisions and/or changes.

The Medical Director of the Student Health Service will serve as the primary spokesperson for the campus on matters related to infection and as coordinator of the clinical response for students who are infected, as well as public health liaison to county and state health officials.

The University will establish a Communicable Disease Advisory Committee for continuous operation. Appointed by the Chancellor or designee, this Committee will address specific policy and program issues related to disease prevention on campus and monitor the institution's response to these issues.

This Committee will be representative of the campus community and will include:

  • Human Resource Services' representative
  • Office of Environmental Health and Safety staff representative
  • Wellness Coordinator from Student Health Services
  • Medical Director of Student Health Services
  • Director of Student Health Services
  • Director of Housing and Residence Life
  • Administrator from Facilities Services (Physical Plant)
  • Three-four faculty members (preferably from disciplines that are engaged in such matters, such as Public Health Education, Biology, Nursing, etc.)
  • One-two students
  • Other members of the campus community who are in a position to advance this policy may also be included in the Committee.

Responsibilities of the Committee include:

  • Monitoring public health issues regarding communicable diseases and making recommendations to the Chancellor as needed
  • Reviewing campus activities involving occupational exposure to blood-borne pathogens and infectious diseases and making recommendations to Chancellor as needed
  • Insuring campus-wide education on communicable diseases and related issues.

Enforcement

Any violation of this policy by a University student is subject to the Student Code of Conduct in the student handbook. For employees, any violation of this policy is "misconduct" under EPA policies (faculty and EPA non-faculty) and "unacceptable personal conduct" under SPA policies, including any appeal rights stated therein.

Violations of law may also be referred for criminal or civil prosecution.

Review

This policy is to be reviewed every ten (10) years, or more frequently as needed based on changes to federal, state, local, system, or University changes.

Links to Related University Policies

Contact

This policy is administered by the Office of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.