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As COVID cases increase, some reminders

Unfortunately, as the state of Florida sees increased cases of COVID-19, so does UF.  At present, there are around 100 UF employees who are being withheld from work due to being COVID-19 positive or as a result of close contact.  Here are some reminders:

  • UF encourages all its employees to get vaccinated. Vaccinated individuals are less likely to have serious illness and transmit the virus to others.
  • If an employee tests positive for COVID-19 or has been in contact with someone who has, they should call UF Health Screen, Test, and Protect (STP) at (352) 273-9790 for instructions about next steps.
  • If the employee is withheld from the workplace by STP, the employee will receive an email, as will the employee’s supervisor (as reflected in myUFL) and the designated HR liaison.
    • A similar email is sent when that employee is cleared to return to the workplace.
  • The amount of time the employee will be withheld will be determined by STP.  In some cases, after a disease investigator speaks with the employee, the employee may be cleared to return to the workplace fairly quickly (within hours)—other times, the employee may be withheld for upwards of ten days.
  • Employees who are fully vaccinated and are not exhibiting COVID-19-like symptoms will not have to quarantine and may continue normal work and campus activities.
  • While withheld, employees may use their personally accrued sick leave.  If an employee exhausts all of their personally accrued leave, they may be eligible for additional leave as a result of the university’s leave donation program that was established at the beginning of the pandemic.  Contact University Benefits at benefits@ufl.edu for assistance.
  • Those whose absences meet the definition of a serious medical condition for an employee or immediate family member can apply for leave under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA).  University Benefits at benefits@ufl.edu is available to assist.
  • Expanded FMLA, which was additional paid leave provided under federal guidance in 2020, is no longer available.
  • Employees who are ill must take sick leave.  Employees who are withheld but are not sick may be eligible to work from home on a temporary basis if their jobs allow and the dean, director, department chair, or appropriate vice president approves. The Remote Work Location Agreement is not required unless the employee needs to work remotely for more than 14 consecutive days.  In cases when the employee is approved to work remotely for up to 14 days, the supervisor and the employee should document the agreement in an email.  If the employee is withheld from the workplace longer than 14 days, and working remotely is still agreed upon, a formal Remote Work Location Agreement is required.

Published: July 26th, 2021

Category: News