Researchers

Without your ingenuity and spirit of discovery, Ohio State could not fulfill its potential to improve people’s lives through research. Whether you’re working on a campus or remotely, the information, resources and links below will help you continue your work while staying safe and staying healthy — and playing your part to keep your friends, family and colleagues healthy — at work and at home.

The Office of Research has a Research Recovery Plan for Staged Reopening that outlines reopening laboratories, studios and research spaces in a staged approach. This site includes updates and FAQs specific to researchers.

Information about…

Updates

  • A staged approach for re-opening research labs on campus is under way. Learn more about what you need to do before returning to a campus, including online training available. 
  • Students, faculty and staff were required to complete an online training course and sign the Together As Buckeyes Pledge before returning to campus or by Aug. 25. Additional information is available on the Training and Pledge page.
  • March 3: University leaders held a town hall on March 1 which covered information on university planning efforts related to the summer term and fall semester as well as updates on vaccination distribution efforts. You can watch it and read answers to questions that were submitted on the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes COVID-19 Vaccination Information page. 

  • Feb. 25: Ohio State President Kristina M. Johnson announced that planning is underway for a reactivation of its campuses this fall to offer safe and robust in-person experiences significantly expanded from current restrictions. The university will continue to follow all appropriate measures to promote the health and well-being of the community with the partnership and approval of local, state and federal health authorities. Details of the university’s reactivation plan will be announced in the coming months as leaders continue to study the latest data related to COVID-19 and public health. More information is on the Planning for 2021-22 academic year webpage.
  • Jan. 22: In a message to the university community, President Johnson shared an overview of the current available information about how the COVID-19 vaccine is being distributed under the guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the state of Ohio. The university is working in close coordination with Governor Mike DeWine as well as state and local health experts. Current plans for vaccine distribution by the Wexner Medical Center in Columbus, along with general information and links for further vaccine information and guidelines from the state of Ohio are available on the COVID-19 Vaccine Information page.

View all updates

Frequently asked questions

For additional information and FAQs applicable to all Ohio State faculty and staff, please visit the Faculty and Staff page. For information specific to researchers, please visit the Office of Research's Staged Approach to Returning to On-Campus Research page.

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Daily Health Check

Do I have to track my temperature each day?

A daily health check to report body temperature and health status is required for all students, faculty and staff each day they come to campus or work in the community on behalf of the university. Requiring a daily check of all on-campus individuals helps the university to quickly identify any possible outbreaks from those exhibiting symptoms and move quickly to prevent transmission.

This daily check can be reported through the Ohio State mobile app or compass.osu.edu. Thermometers are part of the return-to-campus PPE safety kits provided to students, faculty and staff. The kits include one disposable mask, two reusable masks, a thermometer, disinfectant wipes and hand sanitizer. Accountability measures will be in place for those who refuse to complete the training or abide by required health and safety guidelines.

Health Reporting doesn’t show up in Compass for me

Health Reporting doesn’t show up in the Ohio State App for me

  • Make sure you are logged into the Ohio State app.
  • Navigate to the “About You” tab and, if it still isn’t present, update your app.
  • If you are unable to update your operating system to iOS 13+ or Android 7+ use compass.osu.edu in your mobile browser to complete your reporting.

 

How long will my health passport last?

The form resets every 18 hours. You should plan to report your health status daily through the Ohio State app or compass.osu.edu.

How often do I have to report health information?

Once daily when you plan to be on campus or engage with the community on behalf of the university.

Is daily health check data being used for research purposes?

There will not be research done using this data without following appropriate IRB procedures.

Is this HIPAA Data?

No. The university has determined that this is not HIPAA data. It is however sensitive personal data which is protected by our institutional data policy and privacy principles.

I’m a manager of managers. How do I see health reporting submission information for my entire team?

Access to view your entire organization can be submitted to access@osu.edu where it will need to go through appropriate approvals, this is done on an org level basis. (e.g. Org 111000,  Org 111001, etc.)  Once approved, managers of managers can view the completion status of their entire team at https://healthreporting.osu.edu/management.

I’m a manager. How do I see if my team members are completing their daily health report?

Managers can view the completion status of their direct reports at https://healthreporting.osu.edu/management.

Should I use the Ohio State app or Compass?

  • Use whichever tool you’re most comfortable with - both the Ohio State app and Compass display and allow you to update your health reporting details. Information updates across tools so you can use both options interchangeably. 
  • The Ohio State app is free to download in the Apple App or Google Play store for devices running iOS 13/Android 7 or higher. 
  • Compass can be accessed through any web browser by visiting compass.osu.edu.

 

What steps should be taken if an employee becomes sick with COVID-19 symptoms?

The university requires all employees who can do so to work from home. For those physically working on-site in critical areas, employees who are sick should remain out of the workplace until:

  • At least 10 days since symptoms first appeared and
  • At least 24 hours with no fever without fever-reducing medication and
  • Symptoms have improved

 

Who is required to complete the daily health check?

A daily health check to report body temperature and health status is required for all students, faculty and staff each day they come to campus or work in the community on behalf of the university. Requiring a daily check of all on-campus individuals helps the university to quickly identify any possible outbreaks from those exhibiting symptoms and move quickly to prevent transmission.

Who will be able to see what employees report?

Technical team: A small number of IT staff who support the apps and secure the data.

Manager reports: Your manager only receives an email if your status is red. Your manager does not receive any specific information about you, just that your status was such that you should stay home.

Monitoring team: The university’s designated health-monitoring team will be able to access data for university-wide health forecasting.

Will I need to show my health passport to someone to gain entry to a building?

Not all buildings will require you to present your health passport for entry. It will vary from building to building. 

Graduate Studies

What is Ohio State’s COVID-19 testing program?

Ohio State has implemented a comprehensive testing program, including:

  • Surveillance testing consisting of mandatory weekly testing of all students at all ranks who live in residence halls or university-managed housing coupled with regular testing of asymptomatic undergraduate, graduate and professional students who live off-campus;
  • Voluntary testing of asymptomatic faculty and staff;
  • Targeted testing if COVID-19 hotspots are identified;
  • Sharing of aggregate information in a way that protects individuals’ medical and educational privacy;
  • Keeping university leaders and the public up to date about the virus’s spread and informing decision-making throughout the semester.

The university is also partnering with the Wexner Medical Center and third-party provider Vault to work toward the use of “pooled” testing, whereby multiple samples from five to 10 individuals can be evaluated for COVID-19 in a single test. This method allows for more people to be tested quickly using fewer resources. 

Compliance with testing, isolation and quarantine procedures is expected as one of the conditions of returning to campus. Failure of students to comply may result in a directive to quarantine until testing can be completed, loss of access to non-residential spaces and a report to Student Conduct. There will be no direct costs to students participating in surveillance testing.

Ohio State has implemented a comprehensive testing program, including:

  • Surveillance testing consisting of mandatory weekly testing of all students at all ranks who live in residence halls or university-managed housing coupled with regular testing of asymptomatic undergraduate, graduate and professional students who live off-campus;
  • Voluntary testing of asymptomatic faculty and staff;
  • Targeted testing if COVID-19 hotspots are identified;
  • Sharing of aggregate information in a way that protects individuals’ medical and educational privacy;
  • Keeping university leaders and the public up to date about the virus’s spread and informing decision-making throughout the semester.

The university is also partnering with the Wexner Medical Center and third-party provider Vault to work toward the use of “pooled” testing, whereby multiple samples from five to 10 individuals can be evaluated for COVID-19 in a single test. This method allows for more people to be tested quickly using fewer resources. 

Compliance with testing, isolation and quarantine procedures is expected as one of the conditions of returning to campus. Failure of students to comply may result in a directive to quarantine until testing can be completed, loss of access to non-residential spaces and a report to Student Conduct. There will be no direct costs to students participating in surveillance testing.

Health and Safety

Are masks required?

For fully vaccinated people, masks are no longer required on Ohio State’s campuses except for in Wexner Medical Center facilities, Student Health facilities, colleges and units with public facing clinical operations,  and on public transportation – in accordance with public health guidelines. Fully vaccinated individuals are also no longer required to physically distance. Individuals who are not vaccinated are required to continue wearing masks indoors and physically distancing at all times. At the Wexner Medical Center, there are additional safety measures and masking guidance in place.

For fully vaccinated people, masks are no longer required on Ohio State’s campuses except for in Wexner Medical Center facilities, Student Health facilities, colleges and units with public facing clinical operations,  and on public transportation – in accordance with public health guidelines. Fully vaccinated individuals are also no longer required to physically distance. Individuals who are not vaccinated are required to continue wearing masks indoors and physically distancing at all times. At the Wexner Medical Center, there are additional safety measures and masking guidance in place.

For fully vaccinated people, masks are no longer required on Ohio State’s campuses except for in Wexner Medical Center facilities, Student Health facilities, colleges and units with public facing clinical operations,  and on public transportation – in accordance with public health guidelines. Fully vaccinated individuals are also no longer required to physically distance. Individuals who are not vaccinated are required to continue wearing masks indoors and physically distancing at all times. At the Wexner Medical Center, there are additional safety measures and masking guidance in place.

What kind of safety measures is the university taking?

The resumption of full operations on Ohio State campuses includes a combination of the use of appropriate face masks, physical distancing, hand hygiene, limited density in indoor spaces, control of the flow of traffic into and around select high-traffic buildings, continued employee teleworking when possible, testing, symptoms tracking and contact tracing. 

The university has distributed free return-to-campus kits to students, faculty and staff that include face masks, hand sanitizer and a body thermometer. 

Ohio State has published guidelines and requirements on the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes site that detail the measures to be taken by the university and the requirements for all individuals to help limit the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of the community. Members of the campus community, including students, faculty, staff, administrators and visitors, signed a pledge to affirm their understanding of what is needed to help fight the spread of the virus and their intention to do their part. Accountability measures are in place for those who refuse to complete the training or abide by required health and safety guidelines. The university has also launched a sustained public information initiative. These efforts are based on guidance from federal, state and local health authorities and recommendations of the safe campus and scientific advisory subgroup of the university’s COVID-19 transition task force. 

The resumption of full operations on Ohio State campuses includes a combination of the use of appropriate face masks, physical distancing, hand hygiene, limited density in indoor spaces, control of the flow of traffic into and around select high-traffic buildings, continued employee teleworking when possible, testing, symptoms tracking and contact tracing. 

The university has distributed free return-to-campus kits to students, faculty and staff that include face masks, hand sanitizer and a body thermometer. 

Ohio State has published guidelines and requirements on the Safe and Healthy Buckeyes site that detail the measures to be taken by the university and the requirements for all individuals to help limit the spread of COVID-19 and protect the health and safety of the community. Members of the campus community, including students, faculty, staff, administrators and visitors, signed a pledge to affirm their understanding of what is needed to help fight the spread of the virus and their intention to do their part. Accountability measures are in place for those who refuse to complete the training or abide by required health and safety guidelines. The university has also launched a sustained public information initiative. These efforts are based on guidance from federal, state and local health authorities and recommendations of the safe campus and scientific advisory subgroup of the university’s COVID-19 transition task force. 

What will happen if someone doesn’t comply with required health and safety guidelines?

Accountability measures are in place for those who choose not to abide by required health and safety guidelines. These accountability measures may range from additional training and informal coaching to formal disciplinary action based on existing structures for students, faculty and staff. They are available here.

Miscellaneous

How will the university determine if it is necessary to move to fully online courses and close residence halls?

All Buckeyes want the same thing — to return to on-campus instruction, research and other campus activities as safely as possible and in a manner that gives everyone peace of mind. Accomplishing this goal means every member of the university community must work Together As Buckeyes. In order to remain open this fall, the virus must be controlled as measured by a range of qualitative and quantitative metrics. Residence hall spaces and hospital beds available must be preserved for quarantine, isolation and treatment. If the rate of infection and hospitalizations is not reduced, the university will return to remote instruction and will have to close residence halls. Avoiding this means every Buckeye will have to shoulder a measure of the burden and adhere to stricter health and safety guidelines.

Is the Wexner Medical Center open?

Yes. Health plan members and others seeking care should read more about patient safety and new policies before their next visit.

What preparations is the university making in case in-person operations must be suspended again?

The university recognizes the need for contingency plans, and we are preparing for a variety of situations. Both prior to COVID-19 and as a response to it, Ohio State has developed a strong capacity for online operations that includes websites and resources devoted to supporting learning, teaching, work, research and more. We continue to build on those capacities.

Testing

Can the university use my COVID-19 test results for research?

Contact tracers are only permitted to use your information for the university’s pandemic response. COVID-19 or pandemic research must go through a separate review and approval process, which is governed by the university’s Human Research Protection Program.

Transition Task Force

What is the role of the safe campus and scientific advisory subgroup?

The safe campus and scientific advisory subgroup uses a data-driven approach to recommend to the transition task force robust safety protocols and other measures to protect the health of the Buckeye community and prevent the spread of COVID-19. 

Transportation

What steps is CABS taking to ensure the health and safety of riders?

CABS is helping protect the safety of passengers through operational changes, including:

  • Cleaning and disinfecting all buses and high-touch surfaces at least twice per day, including handrails and poles
  • Taping off CABS seats to promote physical distancing and limited occupancy
  • Checking driver health before they start their shift
  • Ensuring all CABS drivers wear face masks
  • Requiring all riders to wear face masks
  • Requiring all riders to board and exit from the rear door
Workplace

Are workplace accommodations available for employees at higher-risk?

The Office of Human Resources will work with employees who are most vulnerable to complications from COVID-19, and their supervisors, to attempt to find workplace modifications that address the employee’s concerns. Through a COVID-19 accommodation request, which is a secure intake process, individuals will be asked to:

  • Identify and attest that their health or other factor place them at greater risk of serious illness if they contract the COVID-19 virus.
  • Provide details about their work environment concerns.
  • Indicate what needs and resources they feel are necessary to perform their job safely.


For more information and directions for how to request a COVID-19 related accommodation, please visit: https://hr.osu.edu/coronavirus/accommodations/

How do I manage shared equipment, like printers and fax machines that are used by multiple people?

Please remind faculty and staff to wipe down shared equipment such as printers, copiers, fax machines, phones or other shared office equipment and supplies following use. Appropriate physical distancing should be followed if multiple individuals are using shared equipment at the same time. However, this may also be a good time to assess if there are ways to reduce the use of shared office equipment.

When will employees return to campus?

At this time, all non-essential university employees who are not part of an exempted operation or function are to continue teleworking and remain off campus. Employees may be instructed to return to campus as needed as part of a phased approach under the direction of the transition task force. It also is expected that some employees will continue to telework, when operationally feasible and practical. More details will be shared when available.


Please reference this website for the most up-to-date guidelines. The university’s COVID-19 Transition Task Force’s Safe Campus and Scientific Advisory Subgroup will continue monitoring changing conditions and consult with local and state health authorities. Recommendations and requirements will be refined as needed.