COVID-19 (Coronavirus Disease 2019) is a new respiratory virus that has the potential to cause severe illness and pneumonia in some people. It was identified in late 2019 and has spread around the world. Symptoms include fever, cough and shortness of breath.

UAMS guidelines for academic activities can be found below. This information is subject to change as processes and policies are updated. (Last updated April 28, 2022)

Letter from Provost Stephanie Gardner (Fall 2021)

Click below for more information listed on this page

Acceptance of Risk to Participate in On-site Activities and Required Trainings
Planning for Modes of Instruction and PPE (Updated July 1, 2021)
What items are classified as PPE?
Daily Entrance Screening Process (Screening locations updated August 2, 2021)
Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for Students
COVID-19 Positive Test Steps for Students
Management of employees and students exposed to COVID-19, with confirmed COVID-19 or with symptoms of COVID-19 (Updated January 3,2022)
Travel Guidelines (Updated June 22, 2021)
COVID-19 Vaccinations (Added August 2, 2021)
Uploading Vaccination Documentation to GUS (Added August 2, 2021)
COVID-19 Vaccinations and Clinical Sites (Added August 2, 2021)
Map of Dining Locations (Updated March 18, 2022)
CARES Act/CRRSAA/ARP (Updated April 26, 2022)
Additional Resources (Teaching Resources added August 19, 2020)
COVID-19 Educational Activities Plan Document (Updated August 7, 2020)
Library and Student Success Center Plans (Updated August 2, 2021)
Visitor Policy  (Updated March 4, 2022)
Interim COVID Events Policy (Updated November 4, 2021)

Health and Safety

COVID-19 is contagious. If you have fever, cough or shortness of breath, do not come to UAMS or any other doctor’s office, urgent care clinic or emergency room without first calling and getting instructions. UAMS has set up a drive-thru triage screening area designed to screen quickly and safely people with cough, fever, shortness of breath, flu or COVID-19. Additional information can be found here.

The best way to prevent the spread of the flu, COVID-19 and similar viruses is to:

  • Avoid close contact with sick people
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unclean hands
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover all coughs and sneezes with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash and wash your hands
  • Cough and sneeze into your elbow instead of on your hand
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces with a household cleaning spray or wipe.

If you have specific questions about COVID-19 in Arkansas, contact the Arkansas Department of Health at 1-800-803-7847

Hand sanitizing stations are located throughout UAMS for frequent hand cleaning. Extra sanitizing procedures will be in place for classroom spaces.

Please make sure that you have a thermometer at home to self-monitor your temperature.

Acceptance of Risk to Participate in On-site Activities and Required Trainings

Students accept risk prior to participation in on-site activities either at UAMS or experiential locations. You understand that seeking an education in health care may increase your risk of exposure to COVID-19 and other illnesses or injuries. COVID-19 is a pandemic virus which could cause you to become ill to the point of permanent harm or death. You accept that risk and understand that the risk of transmission of COVID-19 is high and that it appears to spread through the community easily, potentially putting you and those you come in contact with at risk. You additionally understand that contact with a known or suspected COVID-19 patient could require that you enter quarantine for at least fourteen (14) days. Various risks, including the possible increased risk of exposure to COVID-19, are inherent to and associated with the various activities, research, and patient care conducted at UAMS, and by completing the required training module on COVID-19, you are accepting all of those risks.

All students are required to complete the following COVID-19 trainings. Click here for instructions to access.

  1. Infection control module.
  2. UAMS COVID response module.

Planning for Modes of Instruction and PPE

A committee was formed with representatives from Infection Prevention, Office of Academic Services, the Provost’s Office, Supply Chain, and Institutional Support Services. Classroom and lab capacity recommendations were reviewed and approved for programs to update plans based on the type of activity (ex. lecture, hands-on demonstration by faculty member) being conducted. When possible, programs are encouraged to continue alternative methods of instruction. Masks are required only in patient care areas and locations where patients and visitors may be present (see below for additional information). These new guidelines pertain only to those UAMS employees and students who are up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccine series AND flu vaccination for the 2021-2022 flu season. Employees and students who are not up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccination series OR flu vaccination for the 2021-2022 flu season ARE REQUIRED to continue to mask in all campus areas.

What items are classified as PPE?

Cleaning Wipes
Disposable Thermometers
Hand Sanitizer
Gloves
Gowns
Masks (cloth or surgical)
Face shields
Goggles

Daily Entrance Screening Process

Each day you will be on campus, you are required to complete the UAMS COVID Entrance Screening Survey. You will use your network credentials to access the survey.

If you are cleared to enter campus based on your survey responses, an email will be sent to your UAMS email account with that message, and you may come to campus. Upon arrival, you are required to visit an entrance screening location**  where you will present your badge for scanning and have your temperature checked. If your temperature is less than 100.4 and the badge scan shows that you have completed the screening survey, you will receive a sticker for that day which must be displayed at all times on campus.

If you are  not cleared to enter campus based on your survey responses, you will receive an email to your UAMS email account with a link to a Student and Employee Health Monitoring Survey and will be instructed to call the Student Employee Health Clinic (SEHS) at 501-686-6565. You will also need to notify the Associate/Assistant Dean in your college. You may not return to campus until cleared by SEHS, and you will have to complete the monitoring survey daily until cleared.

If you are cleared with conditions, you may come to campus. You will also receive an email to your UAMS email account with a link to a Student and Employee Health Monitoring Survey that you must complete as soon as possible. Upon arrival, you are required to visit an entrance screening location**  where you will present your badge for scanning and have your temperature checked. If your temperature is less than 100.4 and the badge scan shows that you have completed the screening survey, you will receive a sticker for that day which must be displayed at all times on campus.

If you are going to a location other than a UAMS site, you will follow those entry screen processes.  Arkansas Children’s Hospital has a questionnaire required for entry and a temperature check. Masks are required. The VA hospital also has a similar screening process, but there is no online questionnaire. You will answer the questions orally when you arrive.

Regardless of site, at any time that a screening evaluation, contact tracing process, or awareness of COVID exposure occurs and a UAMS student needs to be evaluated and/or referred for COVID-19 testing, the student and/or Associate/Assistant Dean* must contact Student Employee Health Services (SEHS) to assist in determination of need and location for testing.  SEHS is reached at 501-686-6565 from 8:00 am – 4:30 pm Monday – Friday or contact the on-call nurse at 501-398-8636 outside of clinic hours.  If SEHS is the source for notification of failed entry screening or contact tracing identification of exposure, they will assist with this information at the time of notification.

*listed below

Update to UAMS Mask Policy

  • Update to UAMS Mask Policy  (April 20, 2022)- Masks are required only in patient care areas and locations where patients and visitors may be present. These new guidelines pertain only to those UAMS employees and students who are up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccine series AND flu vaccination for the 2021-2022 flu season. Employees and students who are not up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccination series OR flu vaccination for the 2021-2022 flu season ARE REQUIRED to continue to mask in all campus areas.
    • Clinical areas/health care settings – hospital, clinics, waiting rooms, and any other areas where patients and/or visitors may be present
      • Masking continues to be required in all clinical areas (places where health care is delivered) for everyone, including patients, visitors, UAMS employees, students, contractors, vendors and volunteers. This includes any areas where interaction with patients and visitors may occur such as hallways leading to clinical and public areas.
        • Examples: entire UAMS Medical Center; Outpatient Center; Central Building wards 2B, 2D (including endoscopy) 4A, 5A, 7A and Cafeteria (except designated dining room) and hallways leading to these areas; clinical areas in the Family Medicine Center, Rockefeller Cancer Institute, Jones Eye Institute, Stephens Spine Institute, Psychiatric Research Institute and Institute on Aging.
      • Eye Protection is no longer required for patient interactions UNLESS they have known or suspected COVID-19, are on respiratory/droplet precautions, potential splash risk, or during an aerosolizing procedure.
      • Exposure to a person with known COVID-19 without eye protection will be considered significant exposure by Student and Employee Health Services (SEHS) and managed according to protocol.
      • Daily screening through the UAMS COVID-19 online screener is still required for all UAMS employees, students, volunteers and vendors.
  • Nonpatient care/nonhealth care areas – classroom, research, business, administration and support areas that are separate and/or removed from patient care areas.  This includes the Shorey Building (except 1st floor), Education Building II, Rahn Building, Wilson Education Building, bookstore, residence hall, Biomedical Buildings I and II, Administration West, physical plant and the distribution center. This does NOT include classrooms, workrooms or conference rooms within clinical areas such as the clinics and hospital wards.
    • Masking is not required for those UAMS employees and students who are up-to-date on their COVID-19 vaccine series AND flu vaccination for the 2021-22 flu season.
      • Fully vaccinated against COVID-19 means receipt of at least two doses of Pfizer or Moderna vaccine or at least one dose of Johnson & Johnson vaccine, or as approved by UAMS Student and Employee Health Services.
      • Vaccine requirements may be updated to include additional boosters as required by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS.)
    • Employees and students who are not up-to-date with their COVID-19 vaccination series OR flu vaccination for the 2021-22 season (including those with approved medical or religious exemptions) are required to continue to mask in all campus areas.
      • Disciplinary action per UAMS policy will be enforced for failure to comply with this requirement.
  • Daily symptom screening through the UAMS COVID-19 screener is still required for all on-campus employees.
  • Masking continues to be required on all shuttles.
    • Regional Campuses will delineate clinical and non-patient care areas.  Infection Prevention will assist with designation as needed for each area.

As of August 17, 2020, neck gaiters and bandanas are prohibited as face coverings.  Due to a newly published study by Duke University citing that neck gaiters and bandanas are not effective face coverings in protecting against COVID-19, they are no longer allowed as appropriate face covering inside UAMS buildings. These garments are for the most part single-layer and stretchy, and therefore allow more and smaller droplets into the environment.

Please do your part to practice safe social distancing on the shuttles and at the shuttle stops.

Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) for Students

Students will be provided a bag with a set of PPE as requested by their college. Instructions will be included on how to clean and use the PPE.

COVID-19 Positive Test Steps for Students

If a student tests positive for COVID-19, they are required to notify their Associate/Assistant Dean* and the Student Employee Health Clinic (501-686-6565). If they live in the UAMS Residence Hall, they must also notify Cheri Goforth (501-686-5850, GoforthCheriD@uams.edu). Students may not return to campus until cleared by SEHS. Students living in the residence hall may quarantine there.

*listed below

Management of employees and students exposed to COVID-19, with confirmed COVID-19 or with Symptoms of COVID-19

Following new guidance issued by the CDC, UAMS has updated guidance for employees and students (Updated December 29, 2021):

  • If you test positive for COVID infection, regardless of vaccine status, you will be required to:
    -Quarantine for 5 days, return to work Day 6 if asymptomatic or mildly symptomatic with improving symptoms.
    -Daily symptom survey completion and conditional in the SEHS system for 10 days.
  • If you are exposed to someone with a COVID infection and do not have symptoms, requirements are based on your role and vaccination status:
    • Boosted or fully vaccinated:
      -No work restrictions.
      -Daily symptom survey completion and conditional in the SEHS system for 10 days.
    • Unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated Healthcare Providers
      -No work restrictions with testing (PCR) on Days 0, 3, and 6 post-exposure. Daily symptom survey completion and conditional in the SEHS system for 10 days.
      OR
      -Quarantine for 5 days with PCR testing on Day 5. Return to work with negative PCR. Daily symptom survey for 10 days. Not Cleared in SEHS system until negative PCR result, then conditional through Day 10.
    • All other unvaccinated or incompletely vaccinated employees
      -Quarantine for 5 days with PCR testing on Day 5. Return to work with negative PCR. Daily symptom survey for 10 days. Not Cleared in SEHS system until negative PCR result, then conditional through Day 10.Click here for the complete updated guidelines, and additional information can also be found on this document. Employees and students should report symptoms and exposure on the Entrance Screening Survey and wait to be contacted by Student and Employee Health Services for more information. You can also call SEHS at 501-686-6565.

Travel Guidelines

Additional information regarding updated UAMS travel guidelines (as of June 22, 2021) can be found here.

COVID-19 Vaccinations

At this time, UAMS does not require COVID-19 vaccination, but it is strongly encouraged. If you would like information about the vaccine or where to get vaccinated, visit — https://www.healthy.arkansas.gov/programs-services/topics/covid-19-vaccination-plan. UAMS provides vaccines at several locations around the state. More information is provided here: https://uamshealth.com/location/?_location_type=covid-19-vaccine-clinic

Uploading Vaccination Documentation to GUS

Please be sure that you have uploaded ALL of your vaccine information into GUS.  This includes all vaccines that UAMS requires as well as any other additional vaccines you have received.  Instructions for where to locate and upload this information are found here: https://uamshealth.com/university-healthcare/wp-content/uploads/sites/9/2020/06/Student-Upload-Instructions-2.pdf.

COVID-19 Vaccinations and Clinical Sites

With the resurgence of COVID-19 virus cases in the State of Arkansas, a number of clinical training sites that host students from various UAMS programs are now REQUIRING proof of COVID-19 vaccination for employees and student trainees.  If you have not been fully vaccinated, you may not be able to attend training at these sites.  If you fail to meet the vaccine requirements of the external clinical site, we will work to find an alternate site for you to complete your requirement.  The process of locating an alternate site placement may take some time and delay your progress toward completing your clinical requirement and/or graduation.

Map of Dining Locations

UAMS has identified locations where students and employees can eat with safe physical distancing. Please eat in a dining location when possible. Employees are reminded to limit the number of people in break rooms. Click here for the map.

CARES Act, CRRSAA, and ARP

Information regarding the UAMS Higher Education Emergency Relief Funds (CARES Act, CRRSAA, and ARP) can be found by clicking on the link below.

CARES Act/CRRSAA/ARP Disclosure Reports

Additional Resources

UAMS Health COVID-19  site

COVID-19 FAQs

COVID-19 Wellness Resources

UAMS Residence Hall COVID-19 Requirements and Guidelines

Arkansas Department of Health COVID-19 site

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention COVID-19 site

Teaching Resources to Engage UAMS Learners

UAMS Resources for Working and Studying Remotely

Associate/Assistant Dean Contacts