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COVID-19 Health and Safety Protocols

In messages to the campus community on May 13 and May 18, Provost Bichelmeyer, Vice Chancellor Simon Atkinson and Vice Provost of Operations Mike Rounds outlined detailed health and safety protocols for faculty, staff and researchers to follow when they are approved to work on campus. The summary below outlines key protocols, though all members of the KU community are encouraged to read the detailed protocols in the May 13 and May 18 messages.

Protocols will be updated as the situation changes. Follow the up-to-date instructions provided in each building and posted here.

Summary of Health and Safety Protocols

It is everyone’s responsibility as members of the KU research community to adhere to the directives as outlined below. Ultimately, we jeopardize our own health, the health of our colleagues, our research, and the ability of the University to restore on-campus research activity if we do not follow designated protocols. By following physical distancing and other protocols we all help ensure our planned expansion of on-campus research progresses without setbacks, and our research can continue uninterrupted.

  • Only designated employees are approved to be working on campus.
  • Everyone on campus must follow health and safety protocols.
  • All occupants must wear a face covering at all times when in common areas of the building, or if there are others present in the same laboratory or office area.
  • Any and all administrative and other work that can be done remotely must not be conducted in the building.
  • No visitors are allowed in buildings unless approved by the Vice Chancellor for Research.

Entering Buildings

  • Occupants must use designated entrances, which will be limited to one (or two, as appropriate) locations. Those entrances will be marked and electronically monitored when possible to ensure only appropriate people are in the building.
  • Everyone entering a building is responsible for stopping and reviewing the posted self-health assessment protocols each time before entering.
  • At the current time, we will not take the temperature of people entering buildings. We strongly encourage everyone to monitor and log their temperature at home on a daily basis.
  • KU is also working with the CVKey Project to pilot test a health verification app for researchers accessing select buildings.
  • Individuals working in buildings that are not part of the app pilot are on their honor and it is their duty to stop and review the posted self-health assessment protocols each time before entering the building.
  • Only building occupants who are free of symptoms that would indicate a health risk to others based on these protocols, may enter the building.
If the health assessment indicates COVID-related symptoms:

If the health self-assessment using the CVKey app, the written or online form, or a review of the posted symptoms indicates a possible health risk, the individual should:

  • Return home and consult their personal physician and their KU supervisor. They must stay at home for seven days or until they get clearance from their physician.
  • If they do not consult a physician, they must stay home for at least seven days. While at home they should confirm whether they have a fever. They must be fever-free for 72 hours before they can come back to their lab, even if they are at home longer than seven days.

Inside Buildings

  • Move quickly and efficiently through the building and observe all distancing guidelines while passing in hallways.
  • Observe social distancing and mask mandate in common social areas (e.g., break rooms, lobbies).
  • Observe social distancing and mask mandate in shared kitchen areas. Food can be stored in refrigerators during the day, but all items must be removed at the end of the day. Shared dishes, dishwashers, and small appliances (e.g., microwaves, toasters, etc.) should not be used. We suggest employees eat in private work areas or outside. If possible, bring food in a personal cooler or thermal lunch bag rather than using refrigerators in shared break rooms or kitchens.
  • Follow marked traffic flow when using stairwells, which will be designated as either up or down.
  • Only one person is allowed on an elevator at a time. Observe distancing guidelines while waiting for elevators.


  • Everyone must follow building health and safety protocols.
  • Any employee who is identified by the building manager or a fellow employee for not following safety rules will receive a written notice from the appropriate University leader of their responsibility to abide by safety rules.
  • Upon a second notification to the same employee, access to the building will be revoked until cleared to return by the Provost.
  • A third violation by the same employee will be subject to progressive discipline per KU policy.

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