Chancellor's Communique

Return to Campus Planning, 5-8-20

Dear Colleagues,

We are just beginning the slow, measured, and safe return to working and learning activities at the CU Anschutz Medical Campus, guided by a set of principles grounded in a steadfast commitment to protecting the health and safety of our campus community and those we serve. 

Limited return to campus work has begun in our research enterprise as our first phase of this approach, and as quickly as we can bring more people back safely, we will do so.

In the meantime, any working and learning activity that can be effectively accomplished remotely, should continue to be done remotely.

The current Colorado Safer at Home Public Health Order clearly states that any building housing more than 50 people must adhere to certain conditions, including symptom screening and temperature check points of all people entering that building every day. This order applies to our campus, and we have begun to implement these processes and to develop detailed return to campus protocols. 

In accordance with prevailing guidance, all individuals are required to follow global CU Anschutz safety protocols, as well as any additional guidelines specific to their operations. Global protocols include wearing your badge while on campus, maintaining a minimum of six feet between yourself and others at all times, bringing and wearing a cloth mask at all times and especially when within six feet of another person, adhering to restrictions and instructional signage in our pathways and common areas, and following established safety and cleaning protocols for your area.

A central plan under development will apply to all of those invited and approved by leadership to come back to campus, and will be made available to our community on a central website. We anticipate completing the plan and the website within a week. Some elements of the plan include:
  • Units will either be invited back, as select research support staff are currently, or will need to apply to return portions of their unit to campus.
  • Permission will need to be granted by leadership before any return can begin.
  • Each unit will need a detailed plan for proposed re-entry, for whom and by when, which must be reviewed and approved by leadership before initiated.
  • Each plan will include assignment of a designated COVID official responsible for overseeing its execution, and will outline the following:
    • mandatory in-building conduct
    • cleaning responsibilities
    • space usage commensurate with physical distancing requirements, including plans for shared spaces such as breakrooms
    • limited traffic patterns for possible future disease mitigation should someone become ill on campus
  • Every unit will need to contribute volunteer hours to help staff check-in and screening stations. More information specific to volunteers will be coming soon.
  • Every individual coming onto campus must have first completed the required Skillsoft training module, “CU: COVID-19 Return to Campus,” available through the My.CU portal.
  • As we gradually increase approved on-campus activity, we must ensure no more than 50% of individuals in any unit will be on campus at any given time, with rare exceptions.
  • There will be expected behavioral and hygiene norms for both in-building and outside activity, to ensure we are complying with prevention and physical distancing guidelines.

We cannot emphasize enough the vital importance of safety screening and temperature check protocols for everyone entering campus. These steps are not only a requirement of the State of Colorado, they are absolutely essential if we are to control possible exposures to the SARS-CoV-2 virus that causes COVID-19 among our campus community. Your understanding and compliance are appreciated, as we enforce this protocol at the CU Anschutz Medical Campus.

Our ability to move along the continuum of a ramp up will depend highly upon the course of the epidemic and our adherence to the protocols and plans in place, and will be dictated by staffing resources, which are limited. Success in a gradual return to campus effort will require that all of us do our part every day to ensure we are compliant with the necessary public health measures, and that each of our units pitches in where possible to facilitate staffing.

While some may feel these rules and processes are an imposition, we know they are critical steps to ensure we keep everyone on our campus safe and healthy. Your well-being is our first priority, and the processes in place to protect the members of our campus community are non-negotiable.

We look forward to sharing more details with you soon.

Chancellor Don Elliman Signature
Don Elliman
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