COVID-19 and the CSU community: How to stay healthy

Noah Pasley

Classrooms and residence halls have stood empty since schools went remote earlier this year due to the coronavirus pandemic, but as students have returned to campus in preparation for fall classes, many may be wondering how to stay safe.

A daily tracker for Colorado State University, last updated Saturday, shows that the University has had 80 positive cases since June 1, with 12 staff members who have tested positive and 68 students. The tracker, public on the CSU COVID-19 Recovery website, also reports 1,771 positive cases in Larimer County.

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According to the COVID-19 Recovery website, CSU is notified of students and employees who experience symptoms or test positive for the virus through shared information with the Larimer County Department of Health and Environment, doctors who administer tests and University public health offices.

“The CSU Health Network, an on-campus student health clinic, is available to students seeking preventative or medical appointments, and the Health Network’s counselors and therapists are available to students in-person or by telehealth appointments.”

Students and staff are required to fill out a daily symptom checker, which includes questions about temperature, close contact with any individuals who have had COVID-19 and any new symptoms of the virus, according to the website. The checker also asks students to report whether they have tested positive or if they have not received results yet.

All students who live in University housing are expected to receive free testing at tent locations across campus, dependent on what location they live in, according to the COVID testing website. Select staff and faculty, such as those who work in the Lory Student Center and the Recreation Center, are also required to receive testing.

The University is also instituting multiple public health precautions during the semester, including contact tracing measures and cleaning and disinfecting protocols. Among the guidelines laid out on the website, all students, faculty and staff are required to wear a mask while on campus.

Masks are required in University buildings, including community restrooms, classrooms and labs, as well as in public spaces, such as outside on The Plaza, when physical distancing is not possible. Students requiring a face covering exemption can apply for one through the Student Disability Center website, and employees can apply for one through the Office of Equal Opportunity website.

According to the COVID-19 Recovery website, water fountains on campus will be available for use and will be cleaned more frequently by custodial services. The website advises students to avoid touching levers with your hand and to bring a personal water bottle and refill it at fountain refill stations instead of drinking directly from fountains.

The website also adds that students should avoid waiting inside a restroom for a stall if all stalls are occupied and to instead wait outside the restroom until someone exits. It also advises students to wash their hands for at least 20 seconds and to use a paper towel to open the door when leaving.

The CSU Health Network, an on-campus student health clinic, is available to students seeking preventative or medical appointments, and the Health Network’s counselors and therapists are available to students in-person or by telehealth appointments, according to the COVID-19 Recovery website.

The CSU Health Network also offers the You@CSU portal, a website aimed at connecting students with “campus resources and other online educational tools to increase student access,” according to the Health Network website. The You@CSU portal offers several COVID-19 resources, including mental wellness tips, healthy coping strategies and articles about relationships and connection.

Student fees pay for a portion of a student’s medical and mental health support at the center, depending on enrollment status and the health service provided. Though walk-in services are not available currently, students can make an appointment through the Health Network’s website or by calling 970-491-7121. 

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Students who are required to quarantine or self-isolate will be temporarily moved to a private room or apartment, according to the University Housing website. Quarantine and self-isolation services such as food delivery will also be provided at no additional charge.

Additionally, students who have an underlying health condition or compromised immune system can contact their Accommodation Specialist or the main office of the SDC in order to get accommodations for accessing their coursework remotely, according to the SDC’s website. The SDC can be reached at sdc@colostate.edu or 970-491-6385.

Noah Pasley can be reached at news@collegian.com or on Twitter @PasleyNoah.