Health Sciences Professionalism Policy

Many activities occur daily within the Health Science Center, including provision of direct patient care, research and didactic and laboratory-based education. Students enrolled in Health Sciences degree programs or working in the Health Sciences Center encounter other students, faculty, staff and patients on a regular basis. Failure to adhere to guidance related to public health, including but not limited to, appropriate use of personal protective equipment; social distancing; instructions for gathering in campus buildings; instructions for gathering when off campus; reporting of possible exposure; cooperation in contact tracing efforts; and instructions for self-isolation could result in illness or death of high risk patients, faculty, staff or classmates; interruption of educational activities for large groups of students; or significant disruption to research activity within Health Sciences.

Students enrolled in Health Sciences degree programs or working in the Health Science Center are expected to abide by University, Health Sciences Center, WVU Research Office and program-specific requirements related to public health and professionalism.

Students who interact with patients on clinical rotations and participating in practice laboratories are expected to wear, at a minimum, a facemask. Individual rotation environments and practice laboratories may have additional PPE requirements (e.g., N95 mask) due to the types of procedures performed which may lead to increased risk of transmission, and students are required to follow any additional requirements in those environments.

When students are off campus, they are expected to follow local ordinancesstate mandates, and CDC recommendations regarding use of PPE and social gatherings.

Failure to follow these requirements is a violation of the WVU Campus Student Code and the professionalism codes of HSC degree programs. Alleged violations will be reported, investigated and handled in accordance to with program policies and procedures.

These health and safety policies are for the protection of the University community, as well as patients and their families. Following these policies will help mitigate the spread of COVID-19. However, it is inevitable that individuals within our community will test positive for COVID-19, and all students are expected to treat all other students, faculty, staff and patients with respect. Alleged behavior that creates a hostile environment or constitutes retaliation, as outlined in BOG Rule 1.6, will be reported, investigated, and handled in accordance to with program policies and procedures.

Students found responsible for refusing to comply with requirements or engaging in prohibited behavior will be subject to professionalism sanctions, up to and including program dismissal. Students may be concurrently subject to University sanctions based upon University policies.

Because failure to comply with these policies place students and other individuals on campus at significant risk, students failing to comply may be subject to interim measures, including interim suspension, as described in the WVU Campus Student Code or individual program policies.

WVU What You Need to Know

Students are expected to review university level rules and guidance related to COVID-19. Updated information regarding academics, campus safety, public health, student life and testing can be accessed through the COVID-19 Campus Updates webpage.

Special Considerations for Healthcare Professionals

Additional information for healthcare professionals is available through the CDC.

The following examples of behavior could result in sanctions, as put forth in this policy. This list is not an all-inclusive list. We are asking you to embrace these public health policies related to COVID-19 transmission and spread as part of your oath of professionalism and shared responsibility as a member of the Health Sciences community.

  1.  Failure to disclose positive test result or providing false information about activities or travel to program administrators or during contact tracing.
    • Failure to disclose a positive test result or providing false information will be considered a serious violation of professional standards.
  2.  Failure to follow quarantine guidelines in place at the time you travel.
    • While students may travel for personal reasons, all students must observe quarantine guidelines regardless of reason for travel.
    • If you miss classes for quarantine due to personal travel, faculty are not obligated to make up material.
    • Failure to proactively disclose travel will be considered a serious violation of professional standards.
  3. Failure to follow local restrictions in place for social gatherings while off-campus.
  4. Failure to follow public health guidelines in WVU System facilities.