Employee Guide

* Updated March 3, 2022 *

As we continue to coexist with COVID-19 and face the challenges with optimism, our top priority remains the health, safety and well-being of our entire university community. We strive to maintain goals of educational excellence, research and innovation. To that end, the university establishes protocols and procedures in accordance with federal, state and local public health and governmental guidance. Frequently Asked Questions are listed below this guide.


Course delivery 

We will begin the spring semester as scheduled on the dates and in the formats listed in the spring schedule of classes. Faculty are expected to deliver courses in the format assigned to the course in the course catalog. However, we also realize these are extraordinary circumstances and anticipate that there will be situations throughout the semester that will require us to adapt and make temporary changes. Those situations should be addressed as they arise and must be in coordination with department chairs and deans and be communicated clearly to students ahead of time.

Continuity of instruction and learning  

Instructors and department chairs should be thinking about and creating a contingency plan in the event someone is unable to be physically present in class or in the office.

Identify a plan for how advising, course instruction or administrative duties can continue. Instructors may also exercise flexibility when determining attendance policies and course structures to accommodate student illness and absences.      

For those courses designated as in-person, if the instructor has a period of isolation or quarantine but is still able to teach, course delivery may temporarily shift to remote instruction until such time as the instructor is able to return in person to the classroom. It is critical that instructors finding themself in this situation communicate quickly and often with students and convey any expectations or changes in procedures that will be required. The instructor and/or department chair should also consult with the dean to ensure they are aware of any changes in course status in order to provide appropriate support and for reporting purposes.  

Instructors cannot permanently change the format, delivery method or location of a course without the approval of their dean and/or through other appropriate university approval processes.   


Health and safety

Self-Checks Before Coming to Campus

All members of the university community should monitor their health, check their temperature each day. For more information on what to do if you have symptoms or think you have been exposed, please contact your health care provider, your county health department or the Sedgwick County Health Department.

Responsibilities While Working On Campus

In accordance with recently updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, effective Friday, March 4, masks will no longer be required for students, employees or visitors, regardless of vaccination status, while on or in Wichita State University premises or while attending campus activities or athletic events (unless otherwise noted). This includes all indoor and outdoor campus locations.

The university continues to strongly recommend that all individuals engage in COVID-healthy behaviors including, but not limited to, being vaccinated if able, wearing a mask where social distancing is not possible, testing, and staying home if you feel ill. COVID testing and vaccines are readily available at no charge to WSU students and employees at the WSU Student Wellness Center. No appointment is necessary. Additional information about the vaccine and available locations can be found at www.vaccines.gov. For more information about testing sites, please visit the Sedgwick County Health Department’s webpage.

Although the university is rescinding all campus-wide mask mandates, please keep in mind that, in certain cases, there may be programmatic or facility requirements dictating the wearing of masks — for example, in our patient-serving clinics or students on clinical practicums and rotations, or in those instances where close contact cannot be avoided and additional precautions may be warranted. Please consult with your supervisor and/or instructor for further instructions, and be sure to follow all posted facility requirements.

Additionally, pursuant to U.S. Department of Transportation policy regarding public transportation, masks will still be required on all university shuttles through March 18.  

The university will continue to monitor the COVID situation on our campus and in our community and will be prepared to pivot back to a mask mandate if the situation warrants.

Cleaning and safety supplies

As students begin to return to campus, a reminder to all that Facilities Services still supplies PPE to our campus. You may utilize our work order system to make your requests. Please continue to bring your empty spray bottles for refills of hand sanitizer and surface disinfectant. We have disposable masks available for professors that wish to hand out to students that want them. In addition, our custodial department continues to clean following COVID protocols. If you have any questions on how to order supplies contact our work order center at 978-3444.

Emotional Wellness

The Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a special service provided for State of Kansas benefits eligible employees and their dependents at no charge. The EAP provides information, short-term counseling, advice and referrals from licensed professionals who understand the typical stresses we all face. You may reach out to these professionals directly for confidential discussion at www.guidanceresources.com or 888-275-1205 (option 1), TDD 800-697-0353 (Company ID SOKEAP). For emergencies, please dial 9-1-1.


COVID-19 Testing, Tracking and Vaccinations

Vaccine mandate on hold

In December, a federal court issued an injunction halting the implementation of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for federal government contractors and subcontractors. That preliminary injunction remains in effect, and WSU has suspended the employee vaccine mandate requirement.

Employees are not currently required to be vaccinated as a condition of employment at the university. However, we know that vaccinations continue to be the best weapon against COVID-19 as we work together to move past this pandemic. We encourage everyone to get a vaccine, including a booster, if you are able. Vaccines are available through the Sedgwick County Health Department and several pharmacies and clinics. To learn more about vaccine locations, visit the CDC vaccine finder

COVID-19 Testing

All faculty and staff have access to free COVID-19 testing through Student Health Services. You no longer need an appointment to be tested. The Student Wellness Center inside the Steve Clark YMCA is open for walk-in testing.

Get more information about testing

Quarantine and Isolation 

WSU is following updated CDC guidance for COVID-19 isolation and quarantine measures for employees and students. Current guidelines include an isolation period of five days for those who test positive for COVID-19 and differentiates the quarantine period for close contact exposures based on vaccination status. Please continue to reach out to totalrewards@wichita.edu with any questions and to submit a COVID report form.  


Staffing and Employee/Supervisor Information

Office hours

The campus and campus offices has resumed normal business operations and hours of operation.

Time Off Policies and Guidance

Wichita State is committed to supporting our employees during this time. For more information on available leave, please visit the Employee Leave FAQ section below, consult the Human Resources website or email totalrewards@wichita.edu.


Travel

Domestic Travel

University-sponsored domestic travel by students, faculty and staff is permitted. Travelers should follow all guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The university also encourages faculty and staff to evaluate whether the travel could be handled online/remotely, or whether the travel could be delayed.

International Travel

University-sponsored travel outside the United States by faculty and staff is allowed, but only under the following provisions: Faculty and staff may travel internationally only if the travel is essential to fulfilling their job’s core function, or if it provides essential support to the university (e.g., research, etc.). All university-sponsored international travel must be approved by the divisional vice president and must also comply with all university international travel pre-approval requirements. Please note: international travel will not be approved to those countries designated as Level 3 or Level 4 by the U.S. State Department and/or the Centers for Disease Control.

Personal Travel

There are no current restrictions for personal domestic or international travel by university employees. Individuals who do travel should follow all CDC guidelines regarding quarantine and isolation upon their return. Because employees may be required to quarantine upon returning to Kansas, employees should work with their supervisor to predetermine if they can work from home during any period of required quarantine. Employees who travel internationally are encouraged to complete the International Travel Form prior to departure. 


University Dining and Events

Dining and Rhatigan Student Center hours

WSU Dining will have modified hours, layouts and cleaning schedules. Please click here for more details about dining options, including dining options at Braeburn Square. 

Athletics

Please check goshockers.com for details and attendance modifications. 


The pandemic requires all of us to be active participants in protecting our health, as well as the health of our family, friends, colleagues and neighbors. While the university continues to plan for your safety, we ask that each of you cooperate with these updated measures and remember that we all share the responsibility for protecting the health and safety of our community.

We will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and have open conversation with you about any necessary changes or modifications as the semester progresses.

In the meantime, our deepest appreciation for all you do and for your unwavering commitment to the health, safety and future of Shocker Nation.


NOTE: This is a complex, challenging, and fluid situation which continues to evolve rapidly. All information on these pages is subject to change as deemed necessary by University leadership in accordance with guidance and recommendations issued by federal, state, and local public health and government officials.

Frequently Asked Questions

Information for Employees


Personal Responsibility of Employees While on Campus

What are WSU’s expectations for employees while on campus to reduce the spread of COVID-19?

The university continues to strongly recommend that all individuals engage in COVID-healthy behaviors including, but not limited to, being vaccinated if able, wearing a mask where social distancing is not possible, testing, and staying home if you feel ill. COVID testing and vaccines are readily available at no charge to WSU students and employees at the WSU Student Wellness Center. No appointment is necessary. Additional information about the vaccine and available locations can be found at www.vaccines.gov. For more information about testing sites, please visit the Sedgwick County Health Department’s webpage.

In accordance with recently updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, effective Friday, March 4, masks will no longer be required for students, employees or visitors, regardless of vaccination status, while on or in Wichita State University premises or while attending campus activities or athletic events (unless otherwise noted). This includes all indoor and outdoor campus locations.


General Wellness


Do student employees of the University need to follow the employee or student processes for COVID-exposure-related concerns?

Student employees should follow and be included in the employment processes, with the exception that they may utilize Student Health Services. Student employees should seek guidance from their supervisor if they have any questions related to COVID exposures.

Can employees get tested for COVID-19 at WSU?

Wichita State University offers optional on-campus COVID-19 testing to all university employees (faculty and staff) who have an on-campus presence. The university is pleased to offer this testing free of charge to our employees.

Get more information about testing

 


Reasons for Quarantine and Isolation

Below is a nonexhaustive list of circumstances that may necessitate quarantine and isolation protocols. If your circumstance is not covered, or if you have additional questions, please email totalrewards@wichita.edu or call the Leave Administrator at 316-978-3079.


What is the difference between isolation and quarantine?

Quarantine is for people who were in close contact with a positive COVID-19 case but currently do not have any symptoms. Quarantine is also required for people who recently traveled to a location identified as high risk for COVID-19 by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention.

Isolation is for people who have tested positive for COVID-19 or have symptoms of COVID-19 and are waiting for test results.

What should I do if I think I am experiencing symptoms of COVID-19?

Notify your supervisor and do not report to your work location. If you have not yet done so, call the Sedgwick County Health Department (or your local health department if you are not a resident of Sedgwick County, Kan.). Follow any instructions provided by appropriate public health officials.

What should I do if I think I have been exposed to COVID-19?

To be exposed a person must have had close contact. Close contacts are someone who was less than 6 feet away from an infected person (laboratory-confirmed or a clinical diagnosis) for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. For example, three individual 5- minute exposures for a total of 15 minutes (in a 24-hour period).

Complete the COVID-19 Employee Report Form and return to totalrewards@wichita.edu.

What should I do if I have been notified that I have been in contact with someone with COVID-19?

If you have been notified by an official of a public health agency, you should follow the instructions provided to you by the agency. This may include a request for you to isolate or quarantine for a specific number of days. Notify your supervisor and discuss the specific instructions provided including instructions for you to isolate or quarantine. Your supervisor will make a determination regarding your ability to work from a remote location or you may request COVID-19 leave, if applicable.

If you have been notified by an individual (non-official public health agency) that you have been in contact with someone with COVID-19, call the Sedgwick County Health Department (or your local health department if you are not a resident of Sedgwick County, Kan.). Follow any instructions provided by appropriate public health officials.

If I have a possible exposure to COVID-19 or illness and am required to go home, will I get paid?

Each situation is reviewed based on individual circumstances. Guidance will be provided by your supervisor or the HR total rewards team.

What should I do if I have recently traveled internationally or in the U.S.?

If you have recently traveled, please consult the CDC Travel page for guidance. Follow any instructions on the CDC web site related to reporting your travel and quarantine. Notify your supervisor and discuss specific instructions provided including instructions for your quarantine, if any. Your supervisor will make a determination regarding your ability to work from a remote location or you may request COVID-19 leave, if applicable.

See more travel-related questions


Personal Wellness Checks


Will WSU require employees coming to campus to do a personal wellness check?

No. WSU is recommending that each employee to conduct a personal wellness check each day prior to coming onto the campus to check for symptoms that could possibly be related to COVID-19.

Do employees have to record or report the results of their personal wellness check to myself or others at WSU?

There is no need for an employee to report their results to anyone and there is no need for your employees to report their results to you.

What does a personal wellness check consist of?

WSU recommends that each employee check themselves for one or more of the following symptoms.

  • Temperature of 100.4ºF (38ºC) or higher
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chills, repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain, headache, sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
What should I do if I have one or more of the above symptoms?
  • Do not come to campus until you have been cleared as a transmission risk for COVID-19.
  • Notify your supervisor in accordance with department procedures/guidelines.
  • Ask your supervisor if you may work remotely or record a sick day.
  • Complete the COVID-19 Request Form as soon as practical and submit to totalrewards@wichita.edu to determine the anticipated return to work date and leave benefits, if applicable
  • Contact your primary care physician or the Sedgwick County Health Department for guidance on testing and/or quarantine.

Social Distancing

What is social distancing?

Social distancing, also called physical distancing, means keeping space between yourself and other people outside of your home. To practice social or physical distancing:

  • Stay at least 6 feet (2 meters) from other people
  • Do not gather in groups larger than 10.
  • Stay out of crowded places and avoid mass gatherings.
  • Refrain from physical contact.

Personal Protective Equipment

What is Personal Protective Equipment (PPE)?

PPE refers to protective clothing, gloves, face masks or other equipment designed to protect the wearer from the spread of illness

Will PPE be provided to employees if required?

Any required personal protective equipment will be provided to employees by their supervisor

What is the difference between a face mask and a face covering?

A face mask is specialized equipment worn by employees to protect them against infectious materials. A face covering, is mainly worn to prevent those people who may have the virus and may not know, from spreading the infection to others. A face covering may be a cloth or similar material made to cover your mouth and nose. It fits snugly, but comfortably, against the side of the face. It is secured with ties or ear loops which may include multiple layers of fabric which allow for breathing without restriction.

What are the expectations for wearing face masks?

In accordance with recently updated guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, effective Friday, March 4, masks will no longer be required for students, employees or visitors, regardless of vaccination status, while on or in Wichita State University premises or while attending campus activities or athletic events (unless otherwise noted). This includes all indoor and outdoor campus locations.  

Does the recent guidance from the governor stating that masking and facial coverings are no longer required for state employees or visitors apply to WSU?

No. The guidance issued by the governor regarding masks applies only to executive branch employees and facilities. This does not include state universities. While helpful guidance, each university is free to set policies and procedures that match the COVID situation unique to their local areas.

Are employees required to wear disposable gloves while on campus?

No, but disposable gloves may be required by certain departments. Your supervisor will communicate that expectation to you and ensure the appropriate type of gloves are provided and glove safety instructions.

What if I feel I need to use PPE, even if it is not required?

Employees may use personal protective equipment even if not required by the university if they deem it appropriate for themselves and desire to do so. WSU requests the employees use any such equipment according to established safety guidelines and standards.


Practicing Personal Hygiene in the Workplace


What is the best way to reduce the spread of COVID-19?

The best way to reduce the spread of COVID-19 is to practice proper hand-washing techniques.

  • Employees are expected to properly wash their hands immediately upon reporting to their work area on campus.
  • Wash hands frequently throughout the course of the day.
  • Wash hands before you leave work.
  • Hand sanitizer can be used when soap and water is not readily available.
What are other personal hygiene practices that can I can use in the workplace to reduce the spread of COVID-19?
  • Cover your mouth and nose when coughing or sneezing with tissue or by sneezing into the bend of your elbow. Immediately discard the tissue.
  • Do not touch your face with unwashed hands.
  • Avoid physical contact (hand shaking, hugging, etc.).
What are employee expectations related to cleaning and disinfecting their workplace?

Our custodians disinfect all work, classroom and lab areas daily with industrial-strength products. In addition, employees are expected to clean and disinfect the following:

  • Employees are expected to wipe down their immediate work areas and any high-traffic areas they are accountable for, or after any in-person contact by using the cleaning or disinfectant products provided.
  • If you need supplies, contact your supervisor to make arrangements to replenish.

Communications, Questions and Concerns


What should you do if a student tells you they have tested positive for COVID-19, has been instructed to isolate because of symptoms and/or testing, or is in quarantine or isolation related to COVID-19?

If a faculty or staff member learns directly from a student that the student has tested positive for COVID-19, has been instructed to isolate because of symptoms and/or testing or in quarantine or isolation, the faculty or staff member should encourage the student to self-report via the COVID-19 Report It form. Student Health will receive this information and will reach out to the student to determine what the student’s current status is, and what, if any, services from the university the student may require.

Per Kansas HB 2016, faculty and staff SHOULD NOT:

  1. ask the student if they have been vaccinated or about previous COVID-19 infections.
  2. ask the student any questions about where the student has been or who the student has been around, or
  3. report the positive case to the class members.

Given the restrictions of HB 2016, which was enacted to protect the privacy and confidentiality of information collected through contact tracing, any necessary “contact tracing” is conducted through the state and local county health departments. The Sedgwick County Health Department, in conjunction with KDHE, determines the required follow up for individuals who test positive and collects information on their close contacts, if needed. Accordingly, the university is unable to conduct contact tracing and cannot and will not (by law) mandate contact tracing for any person.

What should employees do if they have concerns about a co-worker who exhibits possible symptoms of COVID-19 (such as a cough) while they are working on campus?

Employees should notify their immediate supervisors if they have a concern regarding a co-worker with possible COVID-19 symptoms. The supervisor will observe and discuss the observed symptoms with the individual.

What if an employee does not feel comfortable coming to campus?

The health and safety of our students, faculty and staff is of the utmost importance. WSU will continue to closely monitor the status of COVID-19 and updates specific to Wichita State University will be provided at wichita.edu/covid. We understand that members of the Wichita State University community may be experience heightened levels of anxiety related to the pandemic. Employees who feel anxious or worried about COVID-19 are encouraged to contact the State of Kansas Employee Assistance Program, or EAP, which is available to help. Kansas EAP is available 24 hours-a-day at 888-275-1205, press option 1.

How will WSU notify employees if there is a need to change operations?

WSU recognizes that this is a very fluid situation, and we may need to adjust quickly. The most up-to-date information about how the university is handling programs in response to COVID-19 will be posted in WSU Today, Shocker Blast and in the "Latest News" section of at wichita.edu/covid.

Is the university reporting positive COVID-19 cases to the public?

Yes. The University has created a COVID-19 Dashboard that is updated weekly. University officials, in conjunction with the Sedgwick County Health Department, are closely monitoring all information as it relates to the health and safety of its campus community. The university is prepared to take all action necessary in the event that students, faculty or staff are believed to be faced with heightened risk of exposure, including, but not limited to, closing housing facilities and pivoting all classes to remote or online.

What is the university doing with reports of positive tests?

The university has adopted and implemented policies, procedures and practices regarding reports of known exposure or positive cases on campus. The university continues to follow the guidance of federal, state and local health officials in combating the spread of COVID-19 by requiring that students, faculty, staff and visitors wear masks over their mouths and noses while in indoor classrooms and laboratories.  WSU also strongly recommends masks in in all other indoor spaces on campus. Health officials agree that these measures are the most effective way to combat the spread of this disease.

More information about the number of positive cases in the area can be found on Sedgwick County’s website.

Will the university tell me if I may have been exposed to COVID-19?

Recent Kansas legislation enacted to protect the privacy and confidentiality of information prevents the university from engaging in contact tracing efforts. As a result, all contact tracing is conducted through the state and local county health departments. The Sedgwick County Health Department, in conjunction with the Kansas Department of Health and Environment, are responsible for contacting individuals who test positive, providing instructions for isolating, and collecting information on close contacts.

In the event of a positive test, employees are encouraged to contact Human Resources, and students are encouraged to report at wichita.edu/reportit.

What if an employee would like to provide feedback, share a concern or report an issue related to COVID-19 practices at WSU?

If the feedback, concern or issue is within an employee’s department, please contact the immediate supervisor. If this does not resolve the matter, email the HR.ServiceCenter@wichita.edu or reach out to the HR business partner assigned to the department.

What if an employee has questions regarding their benefits or leave reporting?

If an employee has questions regarding benefits or the use of leave, please contact the HR Total Rewards team at TotalRewards@wichita.edu.

What if an employee has questions about reporting their time?

Please email the payroll team within Financial Operations at timekeeping@wichita.edu

What if an employee or an employee’s family member is part of a medically vulnerable population?

If the employee or a family member are part of a medically vulnerable population and are concerned about contracting COVID-19 by being on campus, please contact the Human Resources office at 316-978-3065 or e-mail TotalRewards@wichita.edu to discuss leave benefits that he or she may qualify for under the Family and Medical Leave Act and/or the Americans with Disabilities Act.


Contact Tracing


Is Wichita State University allowed to conduct contact tracing?

No. Wichita State is not allowed to conduct contact tracing

On June 9, 2020, Kansas enacted HB 2016. This legislation created the “COVID-19 Contact Tracing Privacy Act.” Under this Act, only the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE) and the local health officer are authorized to conduct contact tracing. Only the KDHE and the local health officer can grant permission to other state entities to do contact tracing.

In other words, the Act prohibits other state entities, such as Wichita State University, from performing any “contact tracing” activities unless this tracing is specifically authorized by KDHE or the local health officer.

How does HB 2016 define contact tracing and how does that affect Wichita State University?

Under the HB 2016, “contact tracing” has its own definition. And that means that the University has to follow and rely upon that definition – not how “contact tracing” is commonly understood or defined by the CDC or by any other state.

For purposes of HB 2016, “contact tracing” means identifying persons who may have been exposed to an infected person for the purpose of containing the spread of COVID-19 by notifying the contact that the contact may have been exposed, should be tested and should self-quarantine.

Since we are a state entity, the University is prohibited by law from notifying any student, employee, or visitor of any potential known exposure – even in general terms.

What entity is responsible for contact tracing?

In Sedgwick County, contact tracing is the sole responsibility of the Sedgwick County Health Department. This includes any contact tracing that must be done on the Wichita State campus. SCHD, in conjunction with KDHE, are responsible for contacting individuals who test positive, providing instructions for isolating, and collecting information on close contacts.

Contact tracing is a specific process that is conducted through local and state public health authorities. When an individual tests positive for COVID-19, the lab where the test was completed and the provider who ordered the test are required to report the positive test results to the Kansas Department of Health and Environment (KDHE). This report is used to initiate the contact tracing process by local and/or state public health authorities.

Why is it important to self-report potential exposure or positive test for COVID-19?

Keep all the response and only change the first bullet to: Employees should complete the COVID-19 Employee Report Form (link) and return to totalrewards@wichita.edu

How should students in residence halls react to close contact or positive test for COVID-19?

Students living in the residence halls are required to contact Housing staff if they test positive for COVID-19 or have been identified as a close contact of a confirmed positive COVID-19 case. Housing staff will work with students to facilitate quarantine and isolation spaces on campus, if needed.

How is “close contact” defined?

Close contacts are someone who was less than 6 feet away from an infected person (laboratory-confirmed or a clinical diagnosis) for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period. For example, three individual 5- minute exposures for a total of 15 minutes (in a 24-hour period). Infected individuals can spread COVID-19 starting 2 days before symptoms begin (for asymptomatic individuals, 2 days before specimen collection date).


University Operations


How will WSU notify us if operations are changed?

The most up-to-date information about university announcements and all aspects of COVID-19 will be posted in WSU Today and wichita.edu/covid19.

Is Wichita State subject to the Executive Order issued in early September 2021 regarding OSHA and COVID protocols and procedures (including vaccine mandates)?

No. Generally speaking, OSHA does not apply to states or any political subdivisions of a state (like WSU). It only governs private employers. Some states have adopted state requirements that mirror OSHA standards and require state agencies to be subject to those OSHA-like standards. Kansas is not one of those states – so OSHA does not apply to WSU.


Employee Leave and Benefits


What should I do if I’m not feeling well or I am ill?

If you are not feeling well or are ill, you are encouraged to stay home from work. Notify your supervisor and use any leave that you might be eligible to use for an illness. This will help keep our workforce healthy.

If you feel that you need to seek medical attention, you are encouraged to contact your primary care physician, the local health department, or use telehealth services through your health plan, if available.

Has the State Employee Health Plan (SEHP) made any special provisions for plan participants related to COVID-19?

The special provisions regarding COVID-related services that were enacted March 13, 2020 have expired. Effective May 29, 2021, SEHP medical benefits will begin covering COVID-related services according to the REGULAR provisions of SEHP medical coverage. COVID-related services will be subject to all copays, deductibles and coinsurance provisions when received from network and non-network providers.

  1. COVID-19 Tests are available at no cost through the public health response effort. Statewide locations for testing are available here
  2. COVID-19 Vaccinations will continue to be covered at 100% as a preventive care service.
  3. Telehealth services are subject to the REGULAR provisions of SEHP medical coverage. Telehealth is also available to BCBS of KS members through Amwell and Aetna members through Teladoc.
  4. For plan participants that reside in the Topeka area, the HealthQuest Health Center available to members enrolled in the health plan, is located at 901 S. Kansas Ave., Topeka.
    • COVID-19 Tests are available for all state employees and all spouses and dependents over 10 years of age covered by the State Employee Health Plan at the HealthQuest Health Center in Topeka. Curbside testing is available by appointment only. To schedule an appointment, please call 785-783-4080.
What should I do if I have if I don't have a medical condition, but I am concerned about workplace exposure to COVID-19?

The health and safety of our students, faculty and staff is of the utmost importance. We are closely monitoring the status of COVID-19 and updates specific to Wichita State University will be provided on wichita.edu/covid.

We understand that members of the Wichita State University community may experience heightened levels of anxiety related to the pandemic. The HR Total Rewards team encourages employees who feel anxious or worried about COVID-19 to contact the State of Kansas Employee Assistance Plan, or EAP, which is available to help. Guidance Resources is available 24/7

What if I still have questions regarding leave and work options?

If you have questions regarding the use of leave, please contact the HR Total Rewards team at TotalRewards@wichita.edu. If you have questions about telecommuting or other employment concerns, please contact your supervisor or your department’s HR Business Partner. You may also email HR.ServiceCenter@wichita.edu.


Childcare Interruption


What are my options if I am unable to work because I do not have childcare?

If you are experiencing an interruption in childcare, you should discuss the situation with your supervisor to determine if there are any available options that would address the situation and meets both your needs and the needs of the department.

Are there options for childcare?

A local non-profit organization, Child Start, provides a statewide database through its Early Childhood Connections program. To locate child care providers in the greater Wichita region (Sedgwick, Butler, Cowley, Harvey and Sumner Counties) with openings for children People may call Child Start at 1-877-678-2548 (toll-free) or begin an online search at www.childstart.org.


Telecommuting / Remote Working


Can I choose to work from home or an alternate location?

Remote Work may be an option for employees whose position is conducive to Remote Work and in cases where it is mutually agreeable to the Employee and the Leader. To facilitate Remote Work Situations and mitigate the unique administrative and legal issues inherent in them, guidelines have been established. It is important to remember that Remote Work is a privilege, not an entitlement. Remote Work is approved by Leaders on a case-by-case situation, based on the feasibility of the request and consistent with the mission of the University and the respective department or unit. Some positions and situations are not suitable for Remote Work. For more information visit the HR Flexible Work Arrangements webpage.

Who determines if I may work from home or an alternate location?

Generally, Leaders determine if an employee may work a Flexible Work Arrangement, in accordance with the Human Resources Guidance. In more complex situations, higher levels of authority may be needed for approval. Please refer to the Flexible Work Arrangements webpage.

Am I required to have a dedicated home office for telecommuting?

Employees can work from any alternative work site that allows them to perform the duties of their position.

Where can I find tips and resources for working at home or an alternate work location?

If you need guidance on remote work tools, please go to the Working Remotely Resources website. The site includes instructions regarding how to stay connected from a remote location (VPN access to your work computer), web conferencing options, and telecommunications options for voicemail and forwarding calls.

If I am having issues with any IT resources, who should I contact?

Your initial contact should be the University IT HelpDesk at helpdesk@wichita.edu or 316-978-HELP, Option 1.


Guidance for Travel

 

What are university guidelines on university-sponsored domestic travel for students, faculty and staff?

University-sponsored domestic travel by students, faculty and staff is permitted. Travelers should follow all guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The university also encourages faculty and staff to evaluate whether the travel could be handled online/remotely, or whether the travel could be delayed.

What are the university guidelines on university-sponsored international travel for faculty and staff?

University-sponsored travel outside the United States by faculty and staff is allowed, but only under the following provisions: Faculty and staff may travel internationally only if the travel is essential to fulfilling their job’s core function, or if it provides essential support to the university (e.g., research, etc.). All university-sponsored international travel must be approved by the divisional vice president and must also comply with all university international travel pre-approval requirements. Please note: international travel will not be approved to those countries designated as Level 3 or Level 4 by the U.S. State Department and/or the Centers for Disease Control.

What are the university guidelines on university-sponsored international travel for students?

University-sponsored travel outside the United State by students is allowed, but only under the following provisions: All university-sponsored international travel by students must be approved by the appropriate dean/director whose area is responsible for the student’s potential travel, and must comply with all university international travel pre-approval requirements (i.e. submit travel authorizations through Chrome River). Please note: international travel will not be approved to those countries designated as Level 3 or Level 4 by the U.S. State Department and/or the Centers for Disease Control.

Do I have to quarantine after travel?

Travelers should follow all travel quarantine guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control CDC

Do I need documentation to travel?

Travelers should follow all travel documentation guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC)

What are the university guidelines for personal travel?

Travelers engaging in personal, non-university-sponsored travel should follow all guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). The university strongly encourages all faculty and staff who are engaging in personal travel to register your travel with the university.

Information for Supervisors

Shockers United Reopening Plan for Supervisors


Wellness Checks


Will WSU require employees coming to campus to do a personal wellness check?

No. WSU recommends, but does not require, employees to conduct a personal wellness check each day prior to coming onto the campus to check for symptoms that could possibly be related to COVID-19.

Do employees have to record or report the results of their personal wellness check to myself or others at WSU?

There is no need for an employee to report their results to anyone and there is no need for your employees to report their results to you.

What does a personal wellness check consist of?

WSU asks that each employee check themselves for one or more of the following symptoms.

  • Temperature of 100.4ºF (38ºC) or higher
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath
  • Difficulty breathing
  • Chills, repeated shaking with chills
  • Muscle pain, headache, sore throat
  • New loss of taste or smell
What should I do if an employee that reports to me indicates they have one or more of the above symptoms?

If the employee has one or more of the indicated symptoms:

  • The employee is not to come to work onsite until they have been cleared as a transmission risk for COVID-19..
  • Employees are to notify you, in accordance with your department procedure. You will need to let the employees know if they may work remotely or if they need to record a sick day.
  • On the same business day, employees should complete the COVID-19 Report Form and send to TotalRewards@wichita.edu to determine the anticipated return to work date and leave benefits, if applicable.

Personal Protective Equipment


What is personal protective equipment (PPE)?

PPE refers to protective clothing, gloves, face masks or other equipment designed to protect the wearer from the spread of illness. All employees are expected to wear a mask or face covering while on campus unless they are in an office alone or walking on campus alone. Please make sure all your employees have a mask or face covering.

 

What is the difference between a face mask and a face covering?

A face mask is specialized equipment worn by an employee to protect them against infectious materials. A face covering is mainly worn to prevent those people who may have the virus and may not know from spreading the infection to others. A face covering (required while on campus) may be a cloth or similar material made to cover your mouth and nose. It fits snugly but comfortable against the side of the face. It is secured with ties or ear loops which may include multiple layers of fabric to allow for breathing without restriction.

Are employees required to wear disposable gloves while on campus?

Disposable gloves may be required by certain departments.

  • If gloves are required in your department, communicate that expectation to your employees.
  • Ensure the appropriate type of gloves are provided for their use and they have been provided with glove safety instructions.
What if an employee feels the need for PPE, even if it is not required?

Employees may use personal protective equipment, even if not required by the university if they deem it appropriate for themselves and desire to do so. WSU requests the employees use any such equipment according to established safety guidelines/standards.


Cleaning and Disinfecting the Workplace


What are employee expectations related to cleaning and disinfecting the workplace?

Our custodians disinfect all work, classroom and lab areas daily with industrial-strength products. In addition, employees are expected to clean and disinfect the following:

  • Employees may choose to wipe down their immediate work areas and any common or high-traffic areas they are accountable for or after any in-person contact by using the cleaning and disinfectant products provided.

Managing Employees


What should I do if I have an employee(s) that states they are not feeling well or are ill?

If an employee is not feeling well or is ill, please encourage the employee to consider staying home from work. This will help keep our workforce healthy. Employees should use available leave for time away from work.

Should I consider a Flexible Work Arrangement?

The University encourages supervisors to be flexible and creative in considering flexible work arrangements that meet needs of the employee and the department .. As the supervisor, and if business operations allow, you may consider allowing a flexible work arrangement in which an employee(s) alters their normal work schedule or location. Faculty members should seek approval from the appropriate department chair, academic leader or dean.

HR has developed extensive guidance on Flexible Work Arrangements.

Who determines if an employee can work a Flexible Work Arrangement?

Generally, Leaders determine if an employee may work a Flexible Work Arrangement, in accordance with the Human Resources Guidance. In more complex situations, higher levels of authority may be needed for approval. Please refer to the Flexible Work Arrangement webpage.

Can an employee on an H1-B visa request to perform their work via a telecommuting arrangement?

If an Employee is on an H1B/VISA, they may be approved to work remotely, however, if the Work Location is different than the Assigned Work Site approved on the H1B/VISA application, a Remote Work Requests is required by the University. For more information, please visit the HR dedicated webpage for Flexible Work Arrangements.

Is an employee approved for remote work required to have a dedicated home office for telecommuting?

No. Employees can work from any alternative work site that allows them to perform the duties of their position.

What do I need to consider for Student Workers?

Supervisors should work with these students on a case-by-case basis given individual circumstances. If they are required to work, please consider whether they can perform their essential work functions via telecommuting. Whenever possible, we encourage supervisors to allow them to telecommute or adjust their work method in another manner to avoid financial hardship.

What should I do if I have an employee(s) that indicates they or a family member has/have a medical condition that makes them vulnerable to COVID-19?

If the employee or a family member are part of a medically vulnerable population and are concerned about contracting COVID-19 by being on campus, please contact the Human Resources office at 316-978-3065 or e-mail TotalRewards@wichita.edu to discuss leave benefits that he or she may qualify for under the Family and Medical Leave Act and/or the Americans with Disabilities Act.

What should I do if I have an employee(s) that has indicated they do not have a medical condition, but they are still concerned about workplace exposure to COVID-19?

The health and safety of our student, faculty and staff is of the utmost importance. We are closely monitoring the status of COVID-19 and updates specific to Wichita State University will be provided on wichita.edu/covid19news.

You may also encourage the employee(s) with concerns or anxiety related to these events, to contact the State of Kansas Employee Assistance Plan, or EAP, which is available to help. Guidance Resources is available 24/7

Finally, you may also encourage the employee(s) to reach out to their primary care physician.

What are telehealth services?

Telehealth services are virtual doctor’s office visits and are available in the State Employee Health Plan (SEHP) medical plans. Aetna provides telehealth services through Teledoc and Blue Cross Blue Shield provides telehealth services through Amwell. If you are covered by another health plan, please check with your health plan provider to see if telehealth services are available.

What if an employee has an illness not related to COVID-19?

Employees should follow current applicable call-in procedures for their department and should use available leave to cover time away from work.

Can I require that an employee get tested for COVID-19?

: No. While the university is providing testing free of charge to students, faculty and staff, testing is strictly voluntary and cannot be required by supervisors.

What should I do as a supervisor if an employee notifies me that they have COVID-19 symptoms, or have been in close contact?

: If the employee is at their work location, send them home immediately. If they are not at work, instruct them to come to work and to either call their medical provider or seek a COVID-19 test. In addition, have them complete the COVID-19 Employee Report Form and return to totalrewards@wichita.edu.

What should I do if I have an employee(s) returning from a location that the CDC advises self-quarantine and not returning to work?

University-sponsored domestic travel by students, faculty and staff is permitted. Travelers should follow all guidance issued by the Centers for Disease Control (CDC). If an employee is required to self-quarantine and/or stay at home based on these guidelines, they should use approved leave and monitor their health during travel and after returning from travel. In addition, employees should complete the COVID-19 Request Form to determine the anticipated return to work date and leave benefits, if applicable.

During the COVID-19 period, will I still need to approve time and leave reports?

Yes, in order to accurately pay employees, validation and approval of time and leave reports is required to meet audit standards. If a supervisor does not have access to approve in self-service, a delegation should be made to someone who can validate and approve.

What if I have an employee that has a circumstance not addressed in these FAQ’s?

We recognize there may be times when employees require additional support that our current policies do not foresee or accommodate. If you confront a particularly difficult circumstance, please reach out to the HR business partner assigned to your area.