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Avian Flu Pandemic Plan
Introduction
Pre-Level 1
Level 1
Level 2
Level 3
Level 4
Recovery
Appendices

Areas of Institutional Response:

•Communications
•Academic Programs
Health and Safety
Student LIfe
Administrative Services
Transportation and Controlled Access

 

Avian Flu Plan > Pre-Level 1 <- You Are Here

Pre-Level 1

Prior to efficient human-to-human transmission

Communications

Institution Wide:
•The Incident Response Team will meet regularly to discuss preparations for each level and to confirm the designation of responsibility for specific types of communications.

•Campus faculty, staff, and students will be encouraged to become familiar with details of the Avian Flu Plan. A detailed plan for introducing the Avian Flu Plan to members of the University community is found in Appendix A. A draft of a student correspondence mailing on the Avian Flu for Fall 2006 is provided in Appendix B.

•The new Emergency Preparedness Website(www.umd.edu/emergencypreparedness) will be marketed to members of the University community and updated information will be posted on it as needed. This resource will be used during the Pre-Level 1 period to communicate with students, faculty, staff, parents/families, trustees, regents, surrounding communities, local officials, state officials, and vendors.

•Educational campaigns on hand hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette will be increased.
Department Specific:
•All units will identify essential staff to maintain necessary operations during Levels 1-4, and inform individual staff of their status in writing. This should be done as soon as practical.

•All units will confirm communication protocols for all staff levels (e-mails, meetings, conference calls, etc.).

•All units will be ready to communicate how they will function/provide services with fewer staff, noting restrictions of hours and service levels and alternative means of getting services as appropriate.

•The University Health Center will provide health promotion activities that stress infection control measures, e.g., hand hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette.

•The University Health Center Websitewill be an additional source of current Avian Flu information for the campus.

•The University Health Center will identify experts/spokespersons for campus from County and State health departments.

•Resident Life and Fraternity and Sorority Life will prepare drafts of e-mails, Webpostings, FAQs, and fliers to be used in (a) educational campaigns about hand hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette, (b) personal protection campaign (e.g., what items students should have/store in their rooms and personal safety precautions), and (c) progressively difficult and dangerous situations. In addition, all residents will be advised that all University housing will be shut down shortly after classes are canceled and all residents will be expected to evacuate the campus.

•University Human Resources will disseminate information about applicable leave policies and information on communicable diseases pursuant to the Memorandum of Understandings (Non-exempt and Exempt Article 18, Section 6).

•The Department of Environmental Safety will manage the distribution of information and consult on regulatory issues regarding the use of Personal Protective Equipment, the Instructions for Employees Who Request Voluntary Use of a Respirator, and the Protocol for Cleaning and Disinfection of Environmental Surfaces. These three documents are found in Appendices C, D, and E.

•The Office of Information Technology (OIT) will be responsible for maintaining the essential services and systems to support campus communication and instruction. An overview of the OIT plan is in Appendix F.
Academic Program
•The Office of the Provost will work with colleges and departments to develop unit emergency plans, including plans for dealing with research and research facilities. By October 1, 2006, a complete list of research facilities that must remain open will be developed by the Office of the Provost.

•Each school/college will be asked to designate an emergency point person(s).

•Emergency contact information for critical/essential staff will be distributed through colleges and departments, then to the Provost.

•In the Fall of 2006, Deans will ask each faculty member to discuss class activities/actions (5-10 minutes in class) to be implemented in case the campus is closed due to an Avian Influenza outbreak. Faculty will also be requested to include a paragraph in their syllabi outlining how their courses would be continued/completed in case of an emergency. Faculty members will be asked to set up an e-mail listservs for their classes and to consider how online teaching platforms and other technologies could be used in their courses.

•Academic departments and faculty will be given some flexibility in how they approach working with their classes/research—solutions will vary by discipline and size. What works for a class of 10 might not work for a class of 200. Different approaches will be necessary for undergraduate and graduate students/programs. However, there needs to be coordination so that students are not required to do things for one class that will jeopardize their ability to complete another class.

•The Provost will provide training/incentives for faculty to move appropriate segments of classes online or to WebCT, and to learn how to use appropriate technology in cases of emergency so that their courses can continue.

•The Academic Affairs Division will develop simple, basic templates and general directions at this level that will be sent to Deans/Departments/Faculty. These directions will include: emergency contact information, lab protocols to be used in case of emergency, plans for animal care and protocols that would be implemented if the University were closed for more than two weeks.

•The Academic Instruction and Research Emergency Management Plan is found in Appendix G.
Health and Safety
•The University Health Center will prepare training programs and materials for staff, establish policies on when sick employees will be sent home from work and allowed to return, and establish cross-training for staff who volunteer to be temporarily re-assigned to meet temporary service needs that may arise from staffing shortages.

•The University Health Center will also promote campus-wide hand washing hygiene and cough and sneeze etiquette, provide healthcare workers with respirators and training on respiratory protection from DES, and increase supply of PPEs, medications, medical goods and food supplies available for Health Center workers.

•The University will serve as a Point of Distribution (POD) for medical supplies and vaccines for the County. During Pre-Level 1, the Health Center staff will finalize the plans to set up the POD. The POD will be located in Ritchie Coliseum and will distribute vaccine or medications to the campus community first and then to the outside community. Fifty campus employees will be needed to run the POD. People who volunteer and their family members will be the first to receive the vaccine once it arrives. Additional information on the POD is in Appendix H.

•With assistance from the Department of Procurement and Supply, bulk quantities of surgical masks, N95 respirators, plastic gloves, and alcohol-based hand hygiene products will be purchased and stored for use during the pandemic.
Student Life
•Staff in Resident Life, Residential Facilities, Dining Services, Fraternity and Sorority Life, and Off-Campus Housing will finalize emergency protocols including: identification of essential employees, closing of residence halls and University-owned fraternity and sorority houses, closing of dining services facilities, management of a temporary housing shelter, and management of issues related to the use of University housing facilities by governmental agencies. Specific plans for the Department of Resident Life, Residential Facilities, Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life, and the Department of Dining Services are found in Appendices I, J, and K.

•Staff will be advised of duty expectations during the closure for staff not required to come to campus, but who still maintain professional responsibilities (e.g., Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life leadership staff, etc.)

•Information will continue to be distributed to all students (living on or off-campus, undergraduate and graduate students) regarding planning issues including: what they should bring to campus or obtain once here, evacuation planning (where to go and how to get there), contacts with family and friends, and financial issues. Hard copy handouts as well as Websites will be used. Training will also occur in any regular meetings with students.

•The Office of Fraternity and Sorority Life will make contact with house corporations from the privately-owned fraternity and sorority houses advising them of the University's plans to close all residences in case of Level 2 and offering assistance.

•The Study Abroad Office will provide information regarding the potential pandemic in orientation programs and distribute emergency cards. The Study Abroad Office will also assess risks to areas where students will be traveling. The Study Abroad Emergency Action Plan is in Appendix L.
Administrative Services (Staffing, Facilities, and Financial Services)
•University Human Resources will re-visit existing workplace flexibility options (as appropriate) to provide advice and guidance to departments (e.g., teleworking, staggered hours of operation). A set of guidelines from University Human Resources regarding various staffing issues is found in Appendix M.

•Departments should thoroughly evaluate their operations to determine the essential services that will continue to be delivered in the event of a Temporary Campus Closing (TCC), and which of their employees will be responsible for delivering these services as essential employees, both primary and back-up. See the department pre-closing checklist in Appendix N for additional information.

•All units will define essential staff within each department and within each level defined in this plan. Some employees may be defined as essential at one level but not at another. Employees will be notified in writing of this designation. This should be done as soon as practical and should be followed up with a reminder at such time as the campus might go to a Level 1 or greater alert. All employees identified as essential will be provided vaccination by the University as it becomes available.

•University Human Resources (UHR) has identified a methodology for identifying essential employees in PHR. An indicator will be added in the PHR Appointment Information screen, which will give the flexibility to change or view this information at any point in time. This will include a dropdown box where the employee is designated as one of four possibilities: "Not Applicable (which is the default), "Catastrophic," "Weather or Other Operational," or "Both." With this data, a table can be created in the data warehouse which will give the ability to monitor or track these employees from an institutional standpoint. UHR will develop a WOW report for departments and service offices (e.g., UHR, Police) to easily identify essential employees.

•The PHR Database will be populated by key University personnel. It is suggested that those individuals already listed in the Emergency Contact List maintained by the Department of Public Safety be authorized to enter names into the database of essential employees requiring access to campus.

•Departments will be encouraged to familiarize themselves with the Departmental Closing Plan found in Appendix N.

•All units will consider reassignment of staff within the department to meet temporary service needs.

•As part of this analysis, departments should determine the best methodology for notifying essential employees of their daily work obligations under a TCC:
  • Option # 1 (recommended): Identify one telephone number in the department which will be updated each morning for essential employees. Essential employees would be required to call the number at an appointed time each day to ascertain whether or not they are required to report to the campus that day, and to receive any special instructions. Each employee calling in would be required to leave voicemail on the number so that the supervisor is able to confirm that the message was received (the call will be date/time stamped by the voicemail system). With this option, the burden is on the employee to call regarding work status.
  • Option #2: Departments could identify a point person who is responsible for calling essential employees each day regarding their daily status and work assignments. This is a less efficient way to do this, as employees may not always be available to receive the phone call. Departments should consider the potential for a breakdown in communication with this methodology, and consider the consequences at such a critical time. Nevertheless, this may be a more viable option for very small departments.
•Departments should begin to identify critical supply and operating expense requirements to maintain service levels throughout the various stages of the TCC. Funding source and procurement arrangements will be coordinated through the Comptroller and Procurement offices.

•UHR will notify faculty and staff about pay check distribution during such an emergency. The on-campus distribution of paychecks will be suspended. Paycheck distribution via direct deposit will continue and will be the only mechanism available for the distribution of employee pay. A draft memo has been developed (see Appendix O) that advises employees that paychecks will not be available for pick-up if the campus closes (i.e., Level 3 TCC). The memo strongly encourages employees to enroll in direct deposit immediately as it takes four to six weeks to process the initial enrollment.
Transportation and Controlled Access
•Personal equipment, hygiene/cleaning, and other supplies will be inventoried for adequacy.

•Essential staff will be identified and that designation will be communicated to individuals, including ramifications for absenteeism. Management will maintain contingency plans for handling staff shortages.

•The service plan to transport students to mass transit hubs will be refined, staff will be trained accordingly, and information about the plan will be posted on the departmental Website. The draft plan for the evacuation of residence halls and fraternity and sorority houses is found in Appendix P.

•Motor Transportation Facility and the Shuttle UMD should keep gasoline (and diesel, as needed) fuel storage tanks as full as practical in the event of a closure of the campus during the possible pandemic to minimize problems later when refueling essential vehicles, should supply disruptions affect fuel supplies in the marketplace.







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