UAH

Faculty and Staff Information

General

I have flu symptoms — should I come to work?

No. You should stay at home and not come to work until you are completely better, as it may spread among your co-workers and students. You should not return to work until your fever has been gone for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication.

You should promply report your illness to your supervisor or department head and also to the Faculty and Staff Clinic by phone at (256) 824-2100 or by email.

I have been diagnosed as being infected with an Influenza virus — what should I do?

Follow medical advice and call your supervisor or department head as soon as possible to allow prompt assessment of others with whom you have been in close contact at the University. You should also notify the Faculty and Staff Clinic by phone at (256) 824-2100 or by email.

I am planning to visit an area with a high incidence of flu on official University business — what should I do?

All travel (whether domestic or international) should follow normal travel procedures. It is always important to be aware of major health concerns and any travel restrictions in foreign countries you may be planning to visit.

If you have any underlying health issues, are currently not well, or are pregnant, you may be considered at greater risk and should consult your family doctor for advice on whether travel is appropriate at this time.

If I am sent home, or stay home from work due to illness, how will I be paid?

The following options are available although not all options will be available in all situations depending upon the nature of the job responsibilities and the extent of the illness:

  • Use accrued leave; for example, Sick, Annual, or Personal.
  • Make up the work on an hour–for–hour basis during the same workweek (requires your supervisor's approval). The University's workweek begins at 12:00 a.m. on Wednesday and ends at 11:59 p.m. on the following Tuesday.
  • Administrative leave is not permitted.

I have an employee who is ill with flu–like symptoms and has come to work. I'm concerned about the potential for exposure to other people. Can I send this employee home?

Yes. The decision to send an employee home who is exhibiting symptoms of a communicable disease is to be made on a case–by–case basis in consultation with Human Resources. Of greatest concern is an employee with a fever greater than 100 degrees Fahrenheit and a cough; this employee should be sent home. Other symptoms (coughing, sneezing) may also be of concern. Consult the Faculty and Staff Clinic if you have questions about symptoms.

In addition, advise employees of the basic preventative measures (practice good hygiene, including frequent hand washing, covering your nose and mouth with a tissue or with your sleeve if you cough or sneeze, and avoiding touching your eyes, nose or mouth with your hands) and post flu informational flyers throughout your work areas. Links to flyers can be found on the Resources page.

Student Absences

Can I ask a student to leave class if they appear to be sick?

No. A student cannot be removed from class after arriving ill, but you can encourage them to go home, take care of themselves, and return 24 hours after their fever is gone without the use of fever-reducing medication.

Faculty should notify their department head and the Student Health Center if they observe a student who is ill and still attending class.

What changes can I make to my course structure to minimize the impact of the widespread absences that are predicted this fall?

Instructors should try to place as much course content as possible, including assignments and lecture outlines, on Angel or their class website. The intent is to encourage sick students to stay home but at the same time allow them to stay current with assignments when possible.

My class has a mandatory attendance policy — What happens if a student misses class because of the flu?

Mandatory class attendance policies should be examined on a case–by–case basis. Instructors granting an exception for flu-related absences may opt to require a doctor's excuse. Students will be required to make up all missed course work.

Students should be reminded that they are bound by the UAHuntsville Student Code of Conduct (Chapter 7 of the Student Handbook). Providing false or misleading information regarding an absence may be grounds for disciplinary action.

A Note on the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA)

If UAHuntsville determines that there is an articulable and significant threat to the health and safety of a student or other individuals, it may disclose information from education records to appropriate parties whose knowledge of the information is necessary to protect the health and safety of the student or other individuals. As a faculty member, you should know that observations of a student's behavior are not protected by FERPA. For example, if you see a student who exhibits symptoms of influenza-like illness (ILI) and is still attending class, you may contact "appropriate personnel" for guidance on what to do, and you may also share the information with others who have a legitimate reason to know. In this situation, appropriate personnel would include a nurse at the Student Health Center, the department chair, the Dean of Students, or a member of the University's Communicable Disease Management Team (CDMT). Names of ill students should never be released to the media, parents of other students, members of the general public, etc. Only designated University officials should contact parents or other relatives of students. Only the University's Public Information Officer (Ray Garner) or his designee should release information to the media.