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General Guidelines, Health and Safety Rules

In the pursuit of its missions of research, teaching and outreach to society, the University prioritises the health and safety of its students, researchers, teachers and staff during the COVID-19 pandemic.

The following rules apply to all members of staff, students, visitors and service providers at the University of Luxembourg.

Version: 11 January 2021

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Social Distancing

Social distancing applies at the University: A distance of at least two (2) metres must be kept inside buildings and on campuses. Masks are mandatory inside university buildings and on campus if social distancing is not possible.

In offices:

  • Please keep track of whom you meet during the workday, to facilitate tracing if needed.
  • Avoid the organisation of physical meetings and favour phone/video meetings if ever possible even within the walls of the University. WebEx should remain the norm.
  • Point out potential risky situations at work to your line manager.
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Masks

Masks are mandatory inside the University buildings

  • in shared spaces (reception areas, elevators, toilets, copy machines and printer areas, corridors and floors, kitchenettes etc);
  • in every situation where University staff is in contact with members of the public;
  • in every situation where more than 4 people meet;
  • in every situation where a minimum of two (2) metres social distance cannot be respected;
  • in shared offices, if a minimum of two (2) metres social distance cannot be respected. Wearing face masks is recommended in shared offices even if social distancing can be applied;
  • during in-person classes, students must wear masks;
  • during in-person classes, teachers are not required to wear masks unless a minimum of two (2) metres social distance cannot be respected.

Masks must be changed frequently (surgical one-way masks after 4 hours or when damp).

Please note that shields / visors do not replace a face mask.

Special safety rules may apply in University labs.

Please learn how to use your mask properly: Watch the WHO’s instruction videos for medical and fabric masks.

 

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Disinfectant

Please use hand disinfectant before entering a University building.

 

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General health and safety precautions

Please observe the following rules for your own and everybody’s safety.

  • Stay at home if you do not feel well or if you show any symptoms of COVID-19.
  • Wash your hands frequently and thoroughly. Disinfect your hands regularly with the hydroalcoholic gel provided. Avoid touching your face.
  • Cough or sneeze into your elbow or into a disposable tissue, dispose of the tissue in a dustbin with a lid.
  • Greet without physical contact.
  • Do not share equipment (tablet, phones, folders), prefer digital signatures and virtual exchanges.
  • Regularly air out your workspace, if possible.
  • Regularly air out classrooms.
  • Keep your workspace clean, use surface disinfectant; clean touchscreens and microphones before and after use.

 

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Safety protocols in case of COVID-19

If a person is tested positive for COVID-19:

  • Please call 466644 5555 in case you test positive and contact healthinfo@uni.lu to provide follow-up information.
  • Self-isolate immediately (stay at home, no contact with other persons, surgical mask compulsory in the presence of others).
  • Please provide 46 66 44 5555 or healthinfo@uni.lu with a list of your high-risk contacts at the University over the past 48 hours before symptoms (or 48 hours before the date of your test if no symptoms occur until the date of the results).
  • Please follow the procedure indicated here (EN) and send the form indicating your close high risk contacts to declarationcovid@ms.etat.lu
  • Contact your high-risk contacts (more than 15 minutes close contact at less than 2 metres distance, without or with incorrectly worn mask, car sharing without mask,  meals taken with colleagues etc), inform them that you tested positive and provide them with your personal reference number (this will allow them to claim a test on day 6).
  • More details on isolation can be found here.
  • Medical information will be treated confidentially. The University can however communicate on the occurrence of a case of infection in anonymous form to other employees/students, if necessary.
  • A person tested positive for COVID-19 who does not respect isolation measures or a medically prescribed quarantine faces fines under the law.

If a person is a high-risk contact of a positive person

  • Please check if you are high-risk: did you have exposure to the confirmed infected person for more than 15 minutes at close range (<2 metres) and without proper protection (no or incorrectly worn mask, car sharing without masks and meal with colleagues etc). Were you alerted by a confirmed positive contact of yours? Alternatively, were you alerted by the University or by the health authorities?
  • If yes, or if you experience symptoms, please auto-isolate immediately and follow the procedure indicated here (EN). If necessary, seek medical advice by calling your doctor or by using the e-health platform econsult.
  • Stay at home for 7 days and avoid all non-protected contact with other people.
  • On day 6, get tested. If the test is negative the self-isolation ends; for the next seven days, you are required to self-monitor and wear a mask when in contact with other people. If you have the reference number of the positive case, use this number to request a test.
  • If symptoms appear after 7 days, you must test again and self-isolate.

If you experience symptoms:

  • If you experience symptoms while at the University, please call the internal emergency number 466644 5555 in order to initiate the planned internal procedure (Personal Emergency Procedure).
  • Staff members or students with any symptoms of COVID-19 or who otherwise do not feel well must self-isolate and self-monitor. In case the symptoms persist, they need to call the doctor with whom they are registered here in Luxembourg or use econsult. They should not go to the doctor or to the hospitals’ emergency rooms if they suspect that they are infected with COVID-19. They should only go to the hospital emergency departments when they have a serious, non-COVID-19 related health problem. In case of an emergency, they should always call 112.

If a person in a class tests positive: 

Until the end of December 2020, all classes are switched to remote teaching, except for lab work in small groups as well as practical works (“travaux pratiques” and “travaux dirigés”). All guidelines in the paragraphs below apply only to those cases where in-person teaching is allowed until end of December 2020.

If in one of these allowed in-person teaching environments a participant tests positive for COVID-19, all members of the class will switch to remote teaching for 14 days, unless the person who tested positive had no contact with other members of the class.

In case no contact occurred between the infected person and other members of the class, the class continues in hybrid mode as an in-person class, while provisions must be made to allow the COVID-19 positive person to follow the class and study remotely.

All classes must make provisions to accommodate students who are unable to attend in person teaching as described above. 

The 14-day period starts from the date of the last presence in class of the positive person.

Individuals in isolation (in case of confirmed infection), self-isolation or quarantine (in case of high-risk close contact) must follow the rules pertaining to their particular situation, as indicated by the public health authorities.

If a member of staff tests positive (outside of teaching):

In case a member of staff tests positive for COVID-19, other potentially affected members of the department or team will receive guidance and instructions as per the guidelines applied by the health authorities (self-monitoring, self-isolation or quarantine).

If a tenant of a student residence tests positive:A tenant of a student residence who tests positive must observe the general rules applying to persons with confirmed infections (see above). 

If a COVID-19 infection is suspected or, if a student in a residence has been tested positive for COVID-19, he/she must call 466644 5555 and provide follow-up information to healthinfo@uni.lu. The person needs to self-isolate immediately for a minimum of 10 days after the onset of symptoms (or upon confirmation of a positive test). See the student guidelines for more details.

Fellow tenants in residences may be required by the University to self-isolate, depending on the particular situation (for instance in case of shared facilities or close contact with an infected person, several tenants may be considered high-risk contacts and may be required to self-isolate). In such a case, the University applies the guidelines of the national health authorities. 

 

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Information flow

The information cascade in case a person is confirmed COVID-19 positive is as follows: 

If a person in a class tests positive: 

In addition to the members of the COVID-19 ad hoc committee, the following persons are informed of the occurrence of a confirmed case (on an anonymous basis): 

  • Dean and vice-dean of the faculty;
  • Dean/vice-dean’s office is to inform the head of department, head of administration, study programme director and study programme administrator. 

If a staff member of the administration tests positive: 

In addition to the members of the COVID-19 ad hoc committee, the following persons are informed of the occurrence of a confirmed case (on an anonymous basis): 

  • Vice-rector or head of administration;
  • Line manager or head of department. 

If a staff member of the research staff tests positive: 

In addition to the members of the COVID-19 ad hoc committee, the following persons are informed of the occurrence of a confirmed case (on an anonymous basis):

  • Head of centre or dean and vice-dean;
  • Line manager or head of department.  

Depending on the particular circumstances of the case, and in order to ensure transparency and prevent rumours, the University may choose to inform a wider circle of persons who may have been in contact with the infected persons. 

 

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Work and Remote Work, Meetings and Events

Work on campus

All tasks that require a physical presence on campus must be executed on campus. Campuses are accessible without prior authorisation.

No formal maximum occupancy rates are in force for offices. Social distancing applies (see guidelines above).

 

Remote work

Until further notice, staff members are encouraged to work remotely if the nature of their work permits. Work organisation must be agreed with the supervisors/managers.  Line managers are responsible for setting up work schedules and team presence based on the business needs of their entity. They can organise the presence of reduced teams by day or by rotation. The personal situation of the staff member should be considered.

To ease the administrative workload of line managers, upfront approval of remote work requests in Fiori is suspended.

Vulnerable persons

Persons with vulnerable health conditions in the context of COVID-19 as defined by the Ministry of Health’s guidelines must declare the situation to the HR department by sending a medical certificate attesting to their vulnerability to hr.fo@uni.lu and work remotely.

Are considered vulnerable:

  • Persons over the age of 65;
  • Persons who suffer from diabetes, cardiovascular diseases, chronic respiratory diseases, cancer;
  • Persons with congenital or acquired immunodeficiency;
  • Persons with morbid obesity;
  • Pregnant women.

If the nature of the function does not allow the vulnerable employee to work remotely, a specific procedure involving the occupational health authorities will automatically be triggered.

Any particular request for a return to the site will be subject to a specific assessment by the Security and Safety Office (SSO) in collaboration with the Service de Santé au Travail Multisectoriel.

Reimbursement of items for home office

Only the following items for use in home offices can be reimbursed (via a declaration of expense): paper, printer cartridges / toner / ink.  

Dedicated work-related section on the intranet 

Please consult the dedicated work-related section on the University intranet.

 

Work in laboratories

For lab staff, until further notice, a more flexible work time from 6.00 to 22.00 as well as on Saturdays is permitted for individuals in laboratories on a voluntary basis.

For security reasons, please contact your lab safety officer and 466644 5555 in case of work outside normal working hours.

 

Meetings

It is advised to replace meetings by remote meeting formats such as WebEx. In-person meetings can be held if required, provided the social distancing, wearing of masks and safety measures are respected. Please use large meeting rooms even for small teams and respect the COVID-safe capacity of rooms or lecture halls that can be found here.

Please wear masks for all meetings.

Catering at meetings is not permitted.

Manage risks carefully. Avoid meetings with entire teams or management groups physically present simultaneously; this applies to on-campus and to off-campus meetings.

It is recommended to forego face-to-face interviews for recruitment or other purposes and to replace them by Skype or WebEx interviews as far as possible. This also applies to academic recruitment committees.

Visiting external parties must respect the University’s safety and distancing measures. Identities of visitors, visiting times and visited entities must be documented at the receptions so that visitors can be contacted in case an infection tracing would be required.

 

Scientific events

Events planned and announced prior to 1 November 2020 should be switched to virtual mode.

Until further notice, no new events involving in-person presence can be planned.

Catering at events is not permitted.

In case of questions, please contact event.request@uni.lu.

Doctoral Thesis Defences

Doctoral thesis defences can be organised at the University, with the maximum of participants depending on the COVID-safe room capacities, and provided the safety measures and distancing described above rules are observed. More information is in the quick guide for online/semi-online PhD defences.

 

Social events and catering

Social events involving catering, whether in University buildings or in other University premises, are not authorised.

 

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Travel

All new professional trips are prohibited until further notice (with the exception of one-day visits in the Greater region).

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Testing for COVID-19

The University participates in the Large Scale Testing organised by the Luxembourg government. For the testing, the University prioritises higher-risk groups among the University community. Testing is voluntary and free of charge. The University does not provide convenience testing on demand.

More details are available here.

 

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Teaching

Until the end of December, the University’s teaching continues to be conducted in remote format, except for lab work in small groups, practical work and mid-term exams that cannot be held remotely.

For those allowed activities, the maximum room capacities must be respected. More information on the intranet (for staff only).

The default setting for end of semester exams is the remote format. A very limited number of in-person assessments will be accepted for those study programmes and courses whose exams require an explicit physical presence and interaction. All exceptions to remote examination require the consent from the Vice-rector for academic affairs. The end of semester exam period is extended to include the week of study days/revisions; it starts on 4 January and ends on 6 February 2021.

Online resources for teachers and students are made available on the web platform remote.uni.lu.

Provisions must be made to enable students isolating or in quarantine to follow courses and sit exams in a remote mode.

 

Exemption from in-person classes

Vulnerable persons, or students living in a household with a vulnerable person, and students whose arrival in Luxembourg is delayed for reasons related to COVID-19 are exempt from attending in-person activities. More details are available here.          

Pregnant students who inform the SEVE of their pregnancy status must be given special attention during the COVID-19 pandemic. Only remote studying is allowed for pregnant women

 

Luxembourg Learning Centre

The Luxembourg Learning Centre is open to all users from Monday to Friday from 08.00 to 22.00 and on Saturdays from 08.00 to 17.00. Please consult the LLC's website.

Occupation is limited to maximum of 100 users. Priority access is given to the students and staff of the University of Luxembourg and to students of other universities. For safety and health reasons, the group workspaces remain closed. The wearing of a mask is compulsory at all times, also when seated at a workplace. Users are requested to disinfect their hands prior to touching books or shelves. Furniture and workspaces have been adapted to allow a safe distance between users. Furniture must not be moved.

New students and users who wish to register for the first time are requested to make an appointment via the Affluences app. Instructions on how to use the app are available on the website.

 

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Student Services

Student services are accessible, preferably remotely in order to limit personal traffic on the premises. Please contact the student admissions/enrolment, accommodation, mobility services and Office of Doctoral Studies via email at seve.admission@uni.lu / seve.logement@uni.lu / seve.mobility@uni.lu / incoming@uni.lu / phdstudies@uni.lu or schedule an appointment via the app Affluences. Instructions on how to use the app are available on the website.

Students who have not scheduled an appointment will not be able to access the offices of these services.

 

Mobility

Mobility will be maintained to the extent possible.

The University of Luxembourg is closely monitoring the evolution of the situation and is in regular contact with its partner universities around the world to maximise student mobility opportunities in difficult circumstances. Students should continue preparations for mobility.

For questions send an email to seve.mobility@uni.lu or schedule an appointment via Affluences.

Mobility will be maintained to the maximum extent possible.

 

Extra-curricular student activities

All sports, arts and well-being activities that are organised and implemented must respect the legal health and safety regulations. Updates on the offer for the Winter semester 2020/21 are available online.

Updates about the student lounges are available here.

Events organised by student associations require approval by the rector; a safety and sanitary concept must be submitted to the SSO.  

 

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Restaurants and Kitchens

Restaurants must respect the legal health and safety regulations in force. For the list of open restaurants on the campuses and the available services, please refer to the website.

Kitchenettes in the University buildings can be used while observing health and security precautions. The following rules apply:

  • Respect two (2) metres social distance.
  • Masks are mandatory. To eat, remove the mask and put it in a box.
  • Wash your hands with water and soap before and after eating. Always wash your hands after touching food packaging.
  • It is recommended to disinfect the fridge handles or any other frequently touched surface before and after touching them.
  • Please always store your food in the same fridge and put your name on the food.
  • Do not eat where you may have placed food packaging. The packaging could be contaminated.
  • Dirty cups and plates must be put in the dishwasher immediately after use.

 

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Student residences

In University residences the following main guidelines apply:

  • Please avoid all unnecessary social contacts and keep a distance of two (2) metres to others.
  • If possible, stay in the same group to limit risk.
  • When using kitchens and common areas, please observe two (2) metres distance and safety rules at all times; if social distancing cannot be respected, masks must be worn.
  • The number of persons permitted simultaneously in common areas, even in larger buildings with sufficient space and including visitors, must not exceed four (4) persons; masks must be worn.
  • A tenant can have one visitor each day.
  • Events and parties are not allowed.
  • Air out your room regularly.
  • All of the clothes, bed linens and towels have to be washed regularly in a washing machine (60°C).

If a tenant of a student residence tests positive for COVID-19, the person must strictly follow the rules on isolation. Tenants who are considered high-risk contacts of an infected person must strictly follow the rules on self-isolation. If COVID-positive tenants occupy shared kitchens or bathrooms, the university may require stricter social distancing measures of these tenants. Failure to comply will entail disciplinary proceedings by the University. Please refer to the guidelines above under the heading “Safety protocols in case of COVID-19”.

The full set of guidelines applicable to the student residences can be consulted here.

 

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Research Facilities

LCSB 

For detailed safety guidelines at the LCSB consult the FAQ (access for LCSB staff members only).

 

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Violations of safety guidelines

The University’s COVID-19 safety guidelines are mandatory. The violation of rules entails disciplinary sanctions.

Persons who have been ordered to isolate or self-isolate by the University or to quarantine by the health authorities must strictly observe the appropriate rules. Failure to comply may entail disciplinary and legal sanctions