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COVID-19

Indiana University Vaccine Requirements
A COVID-19 vaccine is required for all IU students, faculty, and staff.
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Current Guidelines

Updated August 09, 2022

  • The information provided below is specific to undergraduate medical students at IU School of Medicine.
  • All the recommendations are assuming you have full vaccination status with boosters as recommended.
  • To get the latest details on COVID-19 guidelines at Indiana University, please go to IU’s COVID-19 page.
  • For latest information about isolation and quarantine go to IU’s isolation and quarantine page.

Masking encouraged and welcomed in IUSM environments – Aug. 4, 2022

In an attempt to minimize the number of new infections among our students, residents, staff and faculty at IUSM, the use of high-quality masking is welcomed and encouraged by IUSM in all indoor group activities such as classrooms, shared office space, and break areas when not actively eating or drinking.

Masking with a blue surgical mask or N-95 style mask is felt to be our best protection from transmission of the current virus variants at this time so we can protect ourselves and those around us.  This is particularly important as our campuses prepare to welcome of you back to begin the year.  Please watch for more updates as we move into the fall.

Masking is still required in clinical setting and patient care areas, see more info below.

Mask Guidelines

IU School of Medicine ended the requirement of masking in indoor educational spaces for all individuals who are fully vaccinated and boosted on March 9, 2022. Masks are optional but still highly encouraged.

IU School of Medicine’s decision to adopt one-way masking — an individual’s decision to continue wearing a mask — is a major step forward for all of us; however, we need to remember that guidance is subject to change based on consultation with the school’s clinical partners and Indiana trends in new COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations, and overall test positivity. Should the community spread of COVID-19 place us at a higher level of risk, we may need to return to more restrictive mitigation measures. 

In clinical settings, all faculty, staff, students, patients, and their visitors are still required to wear masks, regardless of vaccination status. 

If vaccinations are up to date*, masking is optional in:

  • Classrooms and instruction spaces^ 
  • Administrative buildings  
  • Breakrooms  
  • Conference rooms  
  • Cubicles and offices  
  • Laboratory and research spaces (except where hazard assessment indicates that PPE is warranted)  
  • Areas inaccessible to patients and their visitors  

*Those with exemptions and others not updated on vaccinations, with boosters when eligible, must mask and socially distance three feet. When unmasked to eat/drink, increase social distance to six feet. Masks are optional for visitors to administrative buildings if they are up to date on vaccinations.  

As of March 9, 2022, everyone entering a Simulation Center not fully vaccinated against COVID-19 must wear a face mask and practice social distancing of three feet. Individuals who have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19 are not required to wear a mask in non-patient interactions (see below). 

  • Simulated patient interactions: Learners and educators are expected to wear masks when interacting with simulated patients (e.g., mannequins, standardized patients) during simulation events to emulate the patient interactions they will encounter in our clinical training sites. 
    • This will also be the approach we take with physical exam sessions within FCP1 and FCP2. 
  • When students are doing peer-to-peer or standardized patient exams involving the HEENT and Neuro exam, lowering of the mask is allowed for the duration of that portion of the examination. 

Regardless of vaccination status, masking is required in:

  • Patient care areas  
  • Imaging centers  
  • Hospital units  
  • Outpatient offices  
  • Procedure areas  
  • Surgery centers  
  • Hallways and corridors leading to clinical areas  
  • Shared spaces like cafeterias (unless eating), lobbies, gift shops, and restrooms  
  • Any affiliate campus or venue for IUSM-sponsored events where masks are required (check with your campus leadership) 

Anyone who is up to date with COVID-19 vaccinations may choose to continue wearing a mask, even when not required. As a community, we will honor individual preferences around masking. 


COVID-19 Testing

I have symptoms of COVID-19. What do I do? 

If you develop any symptoms of COVID-19, you must get tested so you can take steps to care for yourself and help protect others in your home, campus, patients, and our healthcare teams.  

I have tested positive for COVID-19. What do I do? 

If you test positive for COVID-19, you must

  1. Report: Complete the COVID-19 Self Reporting Form. You can also find this at one.iu.edu, search “COVID” and click on COVID-19 Self Reporting Form. 
  2. Isolate: Use the day of your positive test as day 0.  Your isolation will last at least 5 days. For example, you have a positive test on Monday (Day 0) then Saturday would be your day #5 of isolation.  
  3. Ending your isolation: As long as your symptoms are getting better AND you’ve been fever-free for 24 hours without fever-reducing medicine, on day 6, you can go back to a normal routine with masking in all situations through day 10. If you do not meet both criteria, then you must continue to isolate for 10 days total. So in the example, Sunday would be day #6 and Thursday would be day #10.  
  4. After isolation: Wear a mask for 5 days (days 6-10 following a positive test) at all times when around others. You should not eat or drink in public or with others during this time due to the high risk of transmission.

Note: healthcare systems may require retesting prior to returning. Students are expected to comply with the policies of their clinical facilities. See below.

I am a healthcare student in a clinical setting who has tested positive. Is there anything else I need to do? 

Follow the procedures as outlined above
If you test positive for COVID 19, In addition you must:
 1. Inform:
a) Attending physician on your healthcare team
b) Occupational Health or Employee Health at your assigned clinical facility 
c) Clerkship or elective administration (i.e. clerkship coordinator, clerkship director, elective director)  
2. CompleteTime away request form for time away from clerkships, clinical rotations or electives

I’ve had a high-risk direct exposure to COVID-19. What do I do? 

 If you’ve had a high-risk direct exposure to COVID-19 in a clinical or community setting: 

  • You will NOT need to quarantine after a patient or other exposure if you remain without symptoms and continue to wear a mask in all settings to protect others during the post-exposure monitoring period. 
  • Students need to continue monitoring for symptoms at least twice daily for 10 days after high-risk exposure and stop working immediately if they start feeling ill and pursue testing as outlined above.
What is a high-risk direct exposure? 

“high-risk exposure” means spending at least 15 minutes within 6 feet of someone with active COVID disease with no surgical mask over a 24-hour period, or in an aerosol-producing procedure/environment with no N-95 mask. 

I have completed isolation and am ready to return to the classroom. What do I do? 

If you meet ‘ending your isolation’ criteria, you can simply return to campus and the classroom. You must continue to wear a mask when around others on day #6 through Day #10 if you met criteria to return on day #6. If you are returning on day #11, no mask is required but is always recommended.  

I have completed isolation and am ready to return to the clinical environment. What do I do? 

If you meet ‘ending your isolation’ criteria and you have complied with your clinical facility’s COVID-19 return to work procedures, then you may return to the clinical setting and continue to follow the universal masking policies currently in place for clinical settings.  

What about COVID-19 vaccination and boosters? 

All IUSM students are expected to have gone through the full vaccination series for COVID (two of the Pfizer or Moderna shots or one of the previously offered Johnson & Johnson COVID vaccinations) unless they have an approved exemption. Because of the waning protection from the vaccine, students are encouraged to continue with the recommended booster series as indicated by the CDC.

Where can I get access to home test kits for COVID-19?

Home antigen test kits are an accepted testing option for personal use and for guiding safe return to work/classroom/clerkship decisions. The U.S. Government has made free test kits available to everyone upon request. Access this site to obtain 8 home test kits.  

It’s day 10 and I’m still testing positive by nasal antigen screening. What do I do?

The CDC does not recommend repeat testing after day ten and we are uncertain the degree to which patients may shed non-infectious antigen after this interval. If you are feeling better, it is OK to return to work, but you should remain masked when around others for at least 5 more days (15 days total) and until symptoms have completely resolved.

How can I contact the infection control leaders for each facility and/or campus?

The contact info for infection control leaders at each facility and/or campus are as follows. As a reminder, you can get tested at the associated student health center near each campus.

Bloomington 

Please contact your campus leadership or lead advisor for immediate needs.

Evansville 

Deaconess Hospital, Evansville: Dawn Rogers, 812-450-2768 
Deaconess Women’s Hospital, Newburgh: Sonya Mauzey, 812-842-4262 
Memorial Hospital and Health Center, Jasper: Christopher Bunce, MD, 812-996-5932 
Good Samaritan Hospital, Vincennes: Robin McDonald, 812-885-3476 
St Vincent’s Hospital, Evansville: Kim BellessaTammy Work 

Fort Wayne 

Lutheran Hospital: Lisa MacDonald, 260-458-3600 
Parkview Health: Scott Stienecker, 260-266-9227 

Gary

Please contact your campus leadership or lead advisor for immediate needs.

Indianapolis 

Methodist Hospital: Lana Dbeibo, MD 
VA:  Andrew Dysangco, MD  
Riley Hospital: Adam Karcz, MDJaime Redkey, MD, or John Christenson, MD  
IU Health University Hospital: Cole Beeler, MD  
Eskenazi Health: Amy Kressel, MD, IP on-call pager 317-310-8250 

Muncie 

IU Health Ball Memorial Hospital: Visit the Employee Health office on 7 west or call 765-747-3458. Open 7:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m. Monday to Friday. When the health office is closed, call paging operator 765-747-3298 and ask for RESIDENT ON CALL. 

South Bend 

Elkhart General Hospital: (574) 523-3395 
Goshen Hospital: (574) 364-2735 
Memorial Hospital: (574) 647-6684 
Saint Joseph Regional Medical Center: (574) 335-1030 

Terre Haute 

Terre Haute Regional Hospital: Myrna Dienhart RN, BSN, MS (812) 237-9289 or (812) 249-6250 
Union Health System: Joe McKanna RN, BSN, MBA, CIC, CHSP (812) 238-7428 or (812) 238-7000 for paging. 

West Lafayette 

Franciscan Health Lafayette East: David Linn, MD, 765-775-2800 
IU Health Arnett: Rachael Heathers RN, BSN, CIC, 765-838-5954 and West Central Region Infection Prevention at 765-414-4821  
Purdue University Health: Jamie L. Jackson, Director of Nursing, Purdue University Student Health Service, 765-494-1673 


Other Frequently Asked Questions

Masks

What type of mask should I wear?

All masks should fully cover your mouth and nose, fit snugly against the sides of your face with no gaps and have ties or ear loops to prevent slipping. The CDC provides a guide to masks.

Phase 1

As noted in the link above, a double layer cloth mask greatly reduces virus transmission and is minimum required mask for general campus activities.

Surgical masks are required for activities where close distancing is not avoidable, such as anatomy dissection tables and physical exam skills session in FCP and will be supplied.

Phase 2 and 3

Surgical masks are required at all times within the clinical setting (inpatient and outpatient). This includes during rounds, teaching sessions, etc., as well as direct patient care. Students must also abide by their local healthcare facility protocol/rules and infection control measures in their assigned clinical settings. Students are expected to provide good stewardship of their use of PPE in all clinical settings.

How effective are masks?

Masks, for both vaccinated and unvaccinated people, decrease the risk of transmission for the mask wearer (~80% reduction) and those wearing masks in their immediate environment (>90% reduction of spread if both individuals masked).

What is the official mask policy at IU?

Please see IU’s site for the most current policy.

When do I need an N95, and when do I need a surgical mask?

You should always follow local healthcare facility infection control procedures. Healthcare systems have developed detailed local guidelines based on state, federal, and other specialty-specific guidance as well as local prevalence data. Standard surgical masks remain the method of protection for routine patient care, including COVID patients.

An N95 respirator or higher respiratory protection is required for healthcare personnel during any aerosol-generating procedure such as positive pressure ventilation, intubation, surgical /invasive procedures, or CPR. These masks will be available in the clinical setting. Updated recommendations are available from the IDSA and CDC and nicely explained by our own Dr. Cole Beeler in this video.

How do I report issues with use of or access to PPE in a hospital or clinic setting?

For IU School of Medicine learners in clinical settings, we have developed a reporting form for potential concerns or incidents related to COVID-19 safety that vary from the CDC COVID-19 related guidelines. This form will address the learning environment for student training.

Any patient safety or issues covered by HIPAA should be reported within the healthcare system’s local incident reporting procedures. Your clerkship directors and coordinators are also available to help with any questions during rotations.

Is it safe to re-use N95 masks?

Extended use or “re-use” of N95 masks was a common practice during the early COVID-19 pandemic in order to maintain respirator supplies and has been well-studied. Healthcare providers and systems should follow CDC guidance on the safe and effective extended use of PPE and N95 respirators.

Hospital protocols vary based on specific equipment and processing procedures to ensure safe extended use. Healthcare providers practicing extended use of a respirator should perform a respirator seal check per current CDC guidance.

Can I bring my own face shield or other PPE?

In general, healthcare providers should use hospital-issued PPE to ensure that all protective equipment meets current requirements for functionality and use. Some hospital systems have specific exceptions (for example, some hospitals allow providers to use their own face shields or eye protection). 

Testing

What is mitigation testing?

The goal of mitigation testing is to quickly identify and isolate any individuals who test positive for COVID-19, including asymptomatic carriers of the disease. Those who are unvaccinated will be subject to periodic mitigation testing as per IU and clinical facility guidelines. Please see IU’s guidance about types of testing the university offers.

What is contact tracing?

Contact tracing helps isolate positive cases of COVID-19 and identifies close contacts of those who have tested positive in order to stop the chain of transmission. Please see IU’s guidance about contact tracing.

What is the difference between isolation and self-quarantine?

Both isolation and quarantine are public health practices used to stop or limit the spread of disease but they are distinctly different measures.

Isolation is used to separate ill persons who have a communicable disease from those who are healthy. Isolation restricts the movement of ill persons to help stop the spread of certain diseases.

Quarantine is used to separate and restrict the movement of well persons who may have been exposed to a communicable disease to see if they become ill. These people may have been exposed to a disease and do not know it, or they may have the disease but do not show symptoms. Quarantine can also help limit the spread of communicable disease.

Isolation and quarantine are used to protect the public by preventing exposure to infected persons or to persons who may be infected.

See IU’s guidelines for isolation and self-quarantine.

General

I’m concerned my campus/clinical site is not meeting COVID-9 expectations/requirements. What do I do?

If students feel that their campus or clinical site is not meeting the expected requirements to help keep us all safe, please use the following link to report their concerns so that we can follow up. 

How do I find out more information about the COVID-19 vaccine?

IU has provided an extensive FAQ list that will continue to be updated regarding general questions around the vaccine.

What housing options do I have if I am immune-compromised?

All housing for rotations away from home campus is designed to provide a single bedroom and guidance for cleaning of any shared areas to minimize exposure. Please report to MSE or your clerkship or campus leadership if you have any questions regarding potential conditions that may make you at high-risk for infection.

What is the risk of exposure to COVID-19 in the clinical setting?

Due to careful attention to CDC guidelines for healthcare workers including the use of surgical masks in clinical settings, the risk of transmission in the clinical environment remains extremely low.

At this time, IU School of Medicine has worked to ensure that our clinical partners’ supply and student access to required PPE is adequate. We do not anticipate that we will need to pause essential clinical education at this time but we ask for patience and flexibility if this should change due to unforeseen future changes in conditions. 

What are the symptoms of COVID-19?

As stated by the CDC, symptoms of COVID-19 include:

Fever or chills

Cough

Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing

Fatigue

Muscle or body aches

Headache

New loss of taste or smell

Sore throat

Congestion or runny nose

Nausea or vomiting

Diarrhea

What do I do if I or a family member have special health considerations that might affect my activities in the clinical environment?

Discuss your situation with your primary care physician for medical guidance. Discuss with MSE or your clerkship or campus leadership to determine best options.  IU School of Medicine, like our clinical partners, follow the CDC’s guidance on high-risk conditions that qualify a team member to take extra precautions or be considered for exclusion from caring for COVID-19 patients and those with other infectious diseases who are in isolation and considered infectious. 

What precautions will be taken for seeing COVID-19 positive patients?

Involvement of IU School of Medicine students with COVID-19 patients will only occur when the standard Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) precautions can be met, including adequate personal protective equipment (PPE) for the conditions. Standard surgical masks are still the primary protective mechanism used in all routine interactions with patients with known or suspected COVID. N-95 fit testing or alternatively fit checking at your clinical facility will be done to ensure adequate protection when N-95 masks are needed (aerosol-generating procedures).

How do I get help and support for my mental health?

If you are feeling anxious or overwhelmed, the Department of Mental Health Services (DMHS) is available for support. DMHS offers individual psychotherapy, couples counseling, group counseling and psychiatric services. Currently, all services are available via telehealth.

DMHS also can assist in connecting to other resources as needed. IU School of Medicine trainees statewide can reach out to DMHS at:

In urgent situations, the DMHS Crisis Line is available 24/7: (317) 278-4357 (HELP)

  • Calls are answered by a licensed mental health clinician who can provide assistance and contact the on-call DMHS clinician for urgent help.
  • Anyone can call the crisis line on behalf of a trainee, and calls can be made anonymously.

When should I seek help?

Seek support if you are experiencing these common warning signs and risk factors for emotional distress.

And check out the Mental Health Continuum to determine when it’s time to enlist professional care.

Practice self-care

Think about how frequently, and how well, you are performing self-care activities to maintain good health and improve well-being by taking this self-care assessment.

Regional Campus Resources

Additional resources for regional campus trainees Regional campus medical students have additional local resources as listed below. They also may reach out to DMHS to explore their resource options as these resources continue to develop over time.

Campus Counseling Resource
 Bloomington IU Bloomington CAPS (812) 855-4011
 Evansville University of Evansville Counseling Center (812) 488-2663
 Fort Wayne Bowen Center (260) 481-5748
 Muncie Ball State University Counseling Center (765) 285-1736
 Northwest-Gary Contact DMHS or Dr. Dana Lasek (317) 278-2382 for referral to a NW-Gary therapist
 South Bend IU South Bend Counseling Center (574) 520-4125
 Terre Haute Indiana State University Counseling Center (812) 237-3939
 West Lafayette Contact Dr. Colleen Maguire-Jackson, Purdue Veterinary Medicine Counseling, pvmwellbeing@purdue.edu

Online Learning and Studying

What are some tips and resources to help me with online learning at IU?

Keep Learning at IU provides resources and tips.

Some library resources and other systems require me to be on campus or connect to the IU VPN. How do I connect to the IU VPN to access these from home?

See IU’s policy for connecting to enable secure access.

What if my home internet connection is weak or unstable?

IU has established hot spots around the state if you have any connectivity issues. Find deals and other sources for internet access in the FAQ section of the Keep Learning site.


Have a suggested question for the FAQ?

Ask Medical Student Education is an online portal that will connect you with an answer.


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