Policy III.3008.B, Communicable Disease

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Purpose

This policy defines communicable diseases and outlines the procedures for students and employees, or others having communicable diseases. This policy applies to all members of the College community, including students, employees, contractors, vendors, and visitors.

Policy

  • The College will develop procedure(s) outlining the process for students, staff, and others to report to the appropriate College personnel when diagnosed with a communicable disease.
  • The College may add or remove notifiable conditions as necessary in consultation with, or through the recommendation of, local, state, or federal health authorities. 
  • The College's decisions involving persons who have communicable diseases shall be based on current and well-informed medical recommendations concerning the disease, the risks of transmitting the illness to others, the symptoms and special circumstances of each individual who has a communicable disease, and a careful weighing of the identified risks and the available alternatives for responding to a student/employee with a communicable disease.  The College may consult with the appropriate authorities to receive recommended guidance for the best protection of the college population.
  • The College shall not discriminate in enrollment or employment against any individual solely on the grounds that the individual has a communicable disease. The College reserves the right to exclude or restrict a person with a communicable disease from College facilities, programs, and functions if the College makes a determination that the person constitutes a direct threat to the health or safety of others.
  • The College shall comply with all pertinent statutes and regulations which protect the privacy of persons in the College community, including following all applicable Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act (FERPA) rules and any rules imposed by Texas law.
  • Depending on the nature of the communicable disease, the individual’s activities and responsibilities, and the safety risk to others, the College will evaluate whether a reasonable accommodation can be made to enable the individual to continue with their  studies, employment, or other activities.

Definitions

Communicable diseases: are diseases that can be transmitted easily among a population. 

Notifiable Conditions: are those conditions that the College deems pose a threat to the College community, typically communicable diseases primarily spread through contact or respiratory pathways.

Epidemic: means the occurrence in a community or region of cases of an infectious disease or illness that exceeds normal expectancy.

Pandemic: is an epidemic of infectious disease that has spread through human populations across a large region.

The Authority, Applicability, Sanctions, Exclusions, and Interpretation do not differ from Policy II.2000.A, Policy and Procedures Development, Review, Revision, and Rescission.

Associated Procedures

Procedure III.3008.B.a, Communicable Disease

Procedure III.3008.B.b, Public Health Emergencies

Date of Board Approval

This policy is effective as of July 1, 2021, under the Chancellor’s authority granted by the Board under Policy II.2000.A, Policy and Procedure Development, Review, Revision, and Rescission. Permanent affirmation of the change will follow the standard policy review process at the next regularly scheduled meetings of the Board.

Anticipated September 13, 2021

(Scheduled first reading on August 2, 2021)

Effective Date

July 1, 2021

Primary Owner

Director, Safety, Health, Environment and Risk Management (SHERM)

Secondary Owner

Vice President, Human Resources