COVID-19 Update: Information and resources can be found here.

August 5 Briefing - Answers to Commonly Asked Questions

Questions submitted for this briefing include these topics:

Laboratory and Staffing Compliance Concerns

As announced during our August 5 briefing, the decision was made to remain in Phase 2 through 2020, and our campus has been and remains safe through the use of non-pharmacological interventions, including universal masking, social distancing, and frequent handwashing. Institutional and department leadership have submitted return-to-campus plans based on operational priorities, safety, and business needs.

We do recommend that anyone who has concerns about returning to campus speak with their immediate supervisor, contact Human Resources Employee Relations, or seek the support of Employee Assistance.

Increased usage of parking garages could be due to many factors, including Parking Services allowing employees with lot permits to access the garages and DART riders having been granted passes to park on campus.

We require everyone to follow safety guidelines while on campus and any concerns regarding campus violations should be reported through our compliance reporting channels. UT Southwestern maintains several methods by which an individual can report concerns about conduct or suspected noncompliance. These include:

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Mental Health Day

UT Southwestern provides leave options that include sick, vacation, and holiday time to ensure that employees are supported for time off. We understand that during COVID-19 many employees have experienced higher than expected work hours or demands and we have been encouraging use of vacation time as scheduled time off to refresh and regroup. So please consider that vacation time is not just for traveling.

Regarding sick leave, the policy indicates the purposes of using sick leave are not limited to their commonly understood meanings, but also include absences required for medical, dental, optical, or mental health examination or treatment, or absences for physical therapy and laboratory work or tests as ordered by a licensed practitioner. If an employee is unable to perform their required role due to one of these reasons, they should consider using sick leave.

In addition, anyone needing mental health assistance during COVID-19 should reach out to our Behavioral Health Support team. The team of advanced practice providers, psychiatrists, psychologists, and therapists is responding to calls and emails every day between 7:30 a.m. and 6 p.m. This service is considered supportive only. Referrals to a higher level of care, such as counseling or to a psychiatrist, can be available if requested. Calls and emails will be treated as confidential and not shared outside the team, nor will they be billed or documented in Epic.

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Pulmonary Clinic Appointments

Due to the clinical symptoms of COVID-19 there has been an increased need to reschedule patients within the Pulmonary Clinic. Our clinic leadership, including our managers, medical directors, and operations directors, are working diligently to minimize the impact to patients.

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Listen to the Full Briefing