COVID Health & Safety

Students in front of arch

Vaccine Information

It is proven that the COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective, and they are widely available in our area. Vaccinated people experience a high degree of protection from the virus, and there is evidence that they are much less likely to transmit the virus to others. Our ability to maintain a  vibrant and engaged campus community is based on most members of our community being up to date on their vaccinations.We will continually monitor the latest guidance and will communicate with the campus community whenever our own policies are updated. If you have any questions, please email healthservices@bellarmine.edu

COVID-19 Vaccine Policy

Bellarmine University requires all students, faculty and staff to be up to date on their vaccination, unless approved for an exemption. For guidance on whether you are considered up to date on your vaccinations, please visit https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/vaccines/stay-up-to-date.html.

Vaccinations on Campus: We hope to offer vaccination clinics throughout the fall semester. Check back for dates and registration information.

Vaccinations off Campus: A comprehensive list of vaccination sites can be found on the Kentucky Public Health site, the Indiana.gov site and at Vaccines.gov.

This requirement applies to all undergraduates and graduates, both full- and part-time students. Students, faculty and staff may request an exemption from the vaccination requirement, including the booster only, for medical or religious reasons. Being vaccinated helps protect you, your family and your community.

All students, faculty and staff are required to provide their vaccination status.

Exemptions

Students, if you want to request an exemption from any required immunizations, please download our Exemption Request Form, fill out the form, then upload your form here.

Faculty and Staff, please contact your HR business partner to request an exemption.

Immunization Policy

The university updated its immunization policy here.

  • Faculty and Staff - upload COVID-19 vaccine documentation here
  • Students – upload COVID-19 vaccine documentation here
  • Until you have received one dose of the J & J or two doses of the Moderna/Pfizer sequence of vaccinations, faculty, staff and students are subject to routine mandatory COVID-19 testing

COVID-19 Guidance

As we continue to monitor COVID-19 vaccination progress, locally and across the nation, we have updated our campus plans for the fall term. Please note that our policy continues to be based on the latest guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and from the Commonwealth of Kentucky, and can change based on new information at any time.

Masks

As of Friday, August 19, masks will be strongly encouraged on campus, but not mandatory. We have been able to navigate the challenges of COVID-19 with very few serious health concerns because we have consistently carried out practices that center the care and concern for our fellow community members and we expect that to continue as we implement this new policy. Please think about the proximity to other individuals, length of close contact, ventilation of space, and the well-being of other community members when you consider whether to wear a mask, particularly classrooms. There are members of our community who are immunocompromised and more vulnerable to illness. You may be asked to wear a mask in certain situations to protect these community members and we ask that you respect that request and the privacy of those individuals.

Quarantine and Isolation Protocol

If you have been exposed to COVID-19, tested positive or have symptoms:

  • Students – please contact Health Services
  • Faculty and Staff – please contact Human Resources

Bellarmine follows CDC and KDPH protocols for isolation and quarantine as in this chart.

Testing

If you are symptomatic (fever, cough, shortness of breath, fatigue, muscle aches, headache, new loss of taste or smell, sore throat, congestion or runny nose, nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea) and would like to be tested for COVID-19, please contact Health Services at 502.272.8313 to schedule test Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Looking for a local COVID-19 test aside from the on-campus clinic? Please visit: https://govstatus.egov.com/ky-get-COVID-tested

Need additional help finding a test? Call the Louisville Health COVID-19 Helpline at 502-912-8598. Someone is available to assist you 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Additional free, drive thru-testing resources:

How often should I get tested? You should get tested if you experience virus-like symptoms and/or 5 days after you have come into contact with someone who is COVID-19 positive. You can do this on or off campus.

Contact Tracing and Case Management

Students who report symptoms or exposure should contact the Office of Health Services immediately. Employees who report symptoms should contact their HR Business Partner and supervisor. Students and employees should stay at home or in their residence hall room and seek guidance from the Office of Health Services.  

Any student or employee who receives positive diagnosis should report it to the Office of Health Services. This will be identified as a “case” (a person who has or is presumed by a provider to have COVID-19). Individuals with a case will be instructed to isolate to prevent transmission of the virus. Employees should also notify their Human Resources Business Partner and supervisor.

Any student or employee who is not up-to-date on their COVID vaccination and has been notified they are a contact of someone who tested positive for COVID-19 should report it to the Office of Health Services. This will be identified as a “contact” (a well person who has been exposed to a case or a case’s environment such that they had an opportunity acquire the infection--less than 6 feet for 15 minutes or more). Unvaccinated contacts will be instructed to quarantine by separating themselves from others to prevent transmission and restrict activities outside of their home.

  • Students who are in healthcare clinical settings, caring for COVID-19 patients, have different guidelines defining an exposure. Please reference the CDC guidelines for the complete definition. 
  • Employees should also notify their supervisor.

Information

Face Covering FAQs

As of March 7, 2022, face coverings are now optional, rather than required, on campus. We will continue to monitor the county rates weekly and will re-instate mask mandates if it is recommended by CDC guidance. Though the COVID-19 virus is still with us, we recognize that vaccines, medication, and preventive measures are working to curb the spread and severity of illness.

How to properly wear a face covering:

Putting on a face covering
Wash hands for 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer before applying face covering. Touch the face covering as little as possible to avoid cross-contamination. Once it’s in place, do your best not to touch the outside of the covering or touch your face. Wash hands or use hand sanitizer after inadvertently touching your face covering. We recommend not placing it around your neck or up on your forehead. Your face covering should always cover both your nose and mouth.

Removing a face covering
To safely remove your face covering, first wash your hands for 20 seconds or use hand sanitizer. Avoid touching either the outside or the inside of the covering a much as possible. Remove by the ties or area that has not been near your mouth or nose. Do not shake the covering once you have taken it off.

Care, storage and laundering of a face covering
Keep face coverings in a paper bag or a sealable plastic bag. Replace your face coverings if they become soiled, damaged or visibly contaminated. It is recommended not to use a cloth face covering more than once a day without washing it. Wash your face covering in the sink or the washing machine with hot water and detergent. Make sure you wash your hands before touching your freshly laundered face covering.

Read more about face coverings by visiting the CDC website.

COVID-19 Information & Health Tips

For the latest on COVID-19, visit these websites:

What health precautions can I take?

  • We continue to encourage members of the university community to take precautions and exercise good health practices.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick. Do not attend class or work.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Drink plenty of fluids.
  • World Health Organization: When and how to wear a mask

Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe. The university is engaging in enhanced cleaning of common areas.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing or sneezing.

If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.

What if I feel sick?

If you feel sick, stay home and seek healthcare services as needed. Take care of yourself and stay home until at least 24 hours after any fever ends.

Symptoms of COVID-19 may include fever, coughing, shortness of breath or difficulty breathing. If you are experiencing these symptoms, please contact your healthcare provider and Student Health Services. Do not visit your provider until you have first contacted them, as they may need to make special arrangements for your visit. Bellarmine students can also take advantage of Norton eCare Visits over the Internet.

If you have questions about the virus, please contact Student Health Services by email or at 502.272.8313. 

Students who are experiencing anxiety about COVID-19 can contact the Counseling Center. Faculty or staff can engage the university’s employee assistance program; details are available on One Bellarmine.

Key campus contact information