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Upcoming changes to Health Sciences Building access

Access to the University of Saskatchewan (USask) Health Sciences Building will gradually increase in the weeks ahead.


This announcement was made on July 15, 2021, and may not reflect changes to campus safety and access requirements made since that time. Stay up-to-date on all current safety expectations related to accessing campus spaces.

Following the University of Saskatchewan’s July 9 announcement of upcoming changes and removals of selected COVID-19 protocols and processes, the Health Sciences would like to address how this will impact operations within the Health Sciences Building.

Details of these announced changes include*:

  • As of July 19, 2021, the Campus Access Request Form will no longer be required for most activities. Exceptions include large events (more than 150 people) and activities involving non-USask personnel working, visiting, or attending campus.
    • While you no longer have to request access to campus through the Pandemic Response and Recovery Team (PRT), you are still encouraged to speak with your direct supervisor prior to accessing campus.
  • Several protocols and procedures involving research labs, classroom disinfection, self-monitoring checklists, pre-screening, work location journaling, and more will also be removed as of July 19.
  • All faculty, staff, students, and visitors will be required to wear 3-ply single-use masks in all indoor spaces on USask campuses. USask's masking guidelines will remain in place until August 31.
    • These guidelines will be reviewed prior to the end of August and any changes will be communicated with the campus community.

NOTE: 3-ply single-use masks will be available from the university. Please contact your college, school, or department to receive yours. Mask recycling drop-offs can be found by the B-Wing main entrance as well as next to the elevator outside of the Health Sciences Supply Centre.

*To review the university’s complete July 9 COVID-19 update, please visit https://covid19.usask.ca/all.php#July.

As a result of these recently announced changes, units and personnel operating within the Health Sciences Building after July 19, 2021, will now be responsible for addressing their own physical distancing concerns and will no longer be required to use the Health Sciences Building Office Booking Calendar to avoid going over 25% occupancy.

Public access to the Health Sciences Building

With occupancy limitations being lifted in areas such as labs, offices, washrooms, lunchrooms, etc., check-in desks at Health Sciences Building entrances will be removed on July 30, 2021.

Public access to the building will resume on Aug. 3, 2021. At that point, exterior doors will be unlocked from 6 a.m. to 6 p.m., Monday through Friday. All classrooms will be unlocked. Office suites will remain locked. Access will be available to areas such as the E-Wing parkade and the tunnel from the Health Sciences Building to Gordon Oakes and the College of Arts and Science. The Leslie & Irene Dubé Health Sciences Library will also be open 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. beginning Aug. 3.

As of Aug. 30, 2021, the locking and unlocking of areas within the Health Sciences Building will return to the regular hours of 6 a.m. to 11 p.m. daily (with the exception of statutory holidays and the December holiday break).

NOTE: Building access will likely remain restricted to the Royal University Hospital until further notice.

Unchanged safety requirements

Despite the easing of these COVID-19 requirements, it is important to remember that the pandemic is not over. We still have a shared responsibility to help prevent the spread of COVID-19.

Existing health and safety requirements that will remain in place after July 19 include:

  • Completing the COVID-19 Health and Safety course.
  • Practicing hand hygiene and other preventative measures.
  • Complying with all COVID-19 protocols and other safety in the workplace requirements.
  • Staying home if you are feeling sick.
  • Following all indoor masking requirements — particularly in any shared or multi-use office spaces.
    • Efforts should be made to limit use of these types of spaces to essential work only but will be at the discretion of the unit occupying each space.
  • Not eating lunch or loitering in areas where people are unable to maintain a proper social distance of 6’ (2m).

Additional recommendations

The Health Sciences also strongly recommends taking the following additional precautions whenever possible:

  • Get vaccinated!
  • Only return to work on campus if your work is essential and you have received approval from your direct supervisor. This applies to USask faculty and staff as well as students seeking space in graduate student offices.
    • Stay working from home for the time being when at all possible.
  • For those approved by supervisors for essential work in shared office spaces, please conduct any activities unrelated to your work in a public area where proper social distancing can be maintained.
    • Discuss staggered use of shared office space with co-workers and supervisors to avoid having other occupants in the same space at the same time.
  • Avoid entering areas of the Health Sciences Building unrelated to your work or area of research.
  • As part of USask’s indoor masking requirements, continue wearing a mask in any office space occupied by more than one person.

In USask’s interdependent safety culture, everyone is responsible for the safety of themselves and others. If a hazard or non-adherence to a protocol is observed, address and rectify it (if able) or report it to your supervisor. Issues can also be reported via Safety Resources’ Hazard Report Form.

To learn more about the Pandemic Response and Recovery Team’s Safe Return to Campus Plan, visit https://covid19.usask.ca/about/plan/index.php.

Questions?

If you have any questions or concerns regarding how COVID-19 may impact space usage within areas managed by your unit, please bring them forward to your direct supervisor or to the appropriate leader within your college or school.

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