COVID-19 - 2019 Novel Coronavirus

General COVID-19 FAQs

The University takes the COVID-19 pandemic very seriously. The safety of our U of G community is our top priority, and our emergency management team is meeting daily to assess risks and discuss plans.

STUDENTS: Please refer to the COVID-19 – FAQs for Student Wellness Services for information about local and on-campus services available to you.

The University of Guelph’s Health Services team is working with Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health to monitor the situation and will follow Public Health’s recommendations.

Health

Those who must come to campus or research stations are now required to wear face coverings (i.e., non-medical masks). This decision applies to the Guelph campus and any research stations covered by the Wellington Dufferin Guelph public health district.

Face coverings must be worn when maintaining two metres of physical distance is not possible or predictable, for example when you are in research spaces, hallways and washrooms. This applies both indoors – in shared or common spaces – and outdoors when you are in close proximity with others.

You are welcome to wear your own mask. If you need a face covering, reach out to your supervisor and the University will provide you with one.

This decision on face coverings aligns with the recent order from Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health and can help reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission on campus.

Resources:

The University of Guelph takes the health and safety of our University community very seriously. We follow the lead of the Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health Unit. If Public Health determines that there is a health and safety risk on campus due to a positive case of COVID-19, the University would be provided with directives and the appropriate steps would be taken. Public Health would contact directly any individuals deemed to be at risk.

The University of Guelph takes the health and safety of our University community very seriously. We follow the lead of the Wellington Dufferin Guelph Public Health Unit. If Public Health determines that there is a health and safety risk on campus due to a positive case, the University would be provided with directives and the appropriate steps would be taken. Public Health would contact directly any individuals deemed to be at risk.

If you are a U of G essential worker who is still coming to campus, you are encouraged to continue to practice physical distancing, frequent hand washing, cleaning of frequently used surfaces and  good respiratory etiquette in the work place.  You should monitor for symptoms daily before attending work by using the self-assessment tool and remain at home if you are experiencing any symptoms.

Public Health Ontario has a variety of online resources available to assist individuals with common questions about COVID-19 including how to self-monitor, physical distancing, when and how to wear a mask, etc.

If you have any questions, please contact Occupational Health and Wellness at ohw@uoguelph.ca or 519-824-4120 Ext. 52647.

If you think you have symptoms of COVID-19 use the Government of Ontario online self assessment tool for COVID-19

MILD SYMPTOMS:

Individuals with COVID-19 symptoms (i.e., fever, new cough or difficulty breathing, muscle aches, fatigue, headache, sore throat, runny nose or diarrhea) that are MILD should isolate at home until:

  • 14 days have passed since the start of the first symptom, AND
  • the individual is free from fever, AND
  • the individual’s symptoms are improving.

People who are in close contact with the individual should also self-isolate for 14 days from the last time they were in contact with the individual.

MODERATE SYMPTOMS:

If your symptoms are MODERATE with fever, cough or shortness of breath, call your family doctor or Student Health Services (students) at 519-824-4120 Ext. 52131 or Telehealth Ontario at 1-866-797-0000 to arrange an over-the-phone assessment. You may be asked to go to an assessment clinic. If you are sent to an assessment clinic, you will be seen by a clinician who will provide further instruction. If you need to be tested, the clinician will make the arrangements. You may not be tested.

SEVERE SYMPTOMS:

If your symptoms are SEVERE and it is an emergency, please go to the emergency room or call 911.

What’s the difference between self monitoring, self isolation, and isolation for COVID-19? The Public Health Agency of Canada has created this helpful guide

If you live near the Guelph campus and need to be assessed for COVID-19, please go to:

COVID-19 Assessment Clinic
Victoria Road Recreation Centre – 151 Victoria Road N.

The Guelph Assessment Clinic is staffed by doctors, nurse practitioners, registered nurses and registered practical nurses as well as administrative staff, housekeeping and security. The clinic is open 8 a.m. to 8 p.m. seven days per week, for the foreseeable future.

Learn more about what to expect when you visit the assessment clinic.

Follow your health care provider’s advice. If your symptoms get worse, contact your health care provider (faculty and staff) or call Student Health Services (students). If you develop shortness of breath, contact Guelph General Hospital at 519-837-6440.

How to Self-Isolate With COVID-19 (Public Health Ontario) – PDF

Students: Stay home until your period of self-isolation ends. Do your best to avoid spaces you share with roommates. Ensure you disinfect shared surfaces.

Students living in residence: Students in residence were asked to vacate their residences by March 22. If you must remain in residence, notify student housing services staff (housing@uoguelph.ca) that you have been asked to self isolate. Student housing staff will arrange for food and beverages to be delivered to you. Stay away from others, including others in your townhouse until the self-isolation period is up. Check with Public Health before ending your self-isolation period. See our Student Housing FAQs for more information.

Faculty and Staff: As of Tuesday, March 17, employees are working from home where operationally possible. Employees who are required to perform a critical function and/or whose physical presence is necessary to perform their work as determined by their supervisor will need to continue to come to campus. If you are told to self-isolate, but your job does not allow you to work from home, notify your manager that your health care provider has asked you to self-isolate and stay home until that period is up.

The Public Health Agency of Canada is providing information on self-monitoring, self-isolation and isolation. Visit their website to view an alternative format.

The most important actions community members can take to reduce the risk of infection and prevent the spread of any respiratory illness, including COVID-19 are:

  • Practice physical distancing – avoid social gatherings and crowds. If you are around people outside your family, do your best to stay at least two metres away from them, and work from home if you are able. Gatherings of more than 10 people are currently prohibited by the Ontario government.
  • Avoid travel – especially by air and outside of Canada.
  • Follow usual best practices for hygiene, including:
    • wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after using the washroom and when preparing food
    • use alcohol-based hand sanitizer if soap and water are not available
  • When coughing or sneezing:
    • cough or sneeze into a tissue or the bend of your arm, not your hand
    • dispose of any tissues you have used as soon as possible in a lined waste basket and wash your hands afterwards
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth with unwashed hands
  • Frequently clean objects and surfaces that many people touch, such as doorknobs, phones and TV remotes, with regular household cleaners or diluted bleach (one part bleach to 9 parts water)
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick

University of Guelph Response

As of March 17, employees are asked to work from home when operationally possible. Employees who are required to perform a critical function or whose physical presence is necessary to perform their work as determined by their supervisor will need to continue to come to campus. All U of G classes will be provided through alternative methods of delivery until August 15. No face-to-face classroom instruction will be offered. This follows the guidance provided by the University’s pandemic plan. You can learn more in our Academics FAQs.

All units within the University have their own business continuity plans related to a widespread illness. If you have questions about your unit’s plan, speak with your supervisor.

Temporary changes have been made to the biosecurity protocol for animal and livestock facilities managed by the Office of Research in consideration of COVID-19. The present risk necessitates modifications to our biosecurity protocol to protect staff and ensure continuity of animal welfare and care.


The University of Guelph has enacted its established Pandemic Plan as part of its Emergency Management Plan. You can find both documents on the Campus Community Police website.

The University of Guelph is working with Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health to determine which University supplies can be provided to local organizations to help in the response to COVID-19. Do not independently donate any University supplies.

If you are asked by an outside organization to donate supplies, please respond with the following:

“The University of Guelph is working with Wellington-Dufferin-Guelph Public Health to determine the best way to coordinate and donate available University supplies to help with the community response to COVID-19. All donations will be coordinated through Public Health.”

Supports

The University recognizes that reports of the impacts of COVID-19 in Canada and around the world can be very troubling. If you feel stressed or anxious about COVID-19:

  • contact Counselling Services at 519-824-4120 ext. 53244
  • text “UofG” to 686868 using your text- or SMS-enabled device
  • call Good2Talk 1-866-925-5454
  • employees can call Homewood Health, U of G’s Employee and Family Health Provider at 1-800-663-1142

The University’s Wellness@Work initiative has created an article on How to Stay Connected while Social Distancing that offers useful tips on staying positive and bonding with others while maintaining a physical distance. You can also visit the Gryphon Family portal for additional supports and ideas.

Staff and faculty can call 519-824-4120 Ext. 53444 to consult with a counsellor regarding a student of concern.