Re-entry Message from UAB President Ray L. Watts

UAB community,

watts headshotWe look forward to uniting on campus again. UAB is transitioning from the university’s Limited Business Model into Modified Business Operations. UAB’s policies and protocols for responding to the COVID-19 pandemic are based on the core values and mission pillars of our strategic plan, Forging the Future. During Modified Business Operations, UAB will begin a gradual, phased approach with some groups/functions returning to campus before others. We will begin implementing guidelines for the Yellow/Modified Business Operations level as some research and clinical activities resume in phases beginning on May 26.

This website provides details on how we will come back to campus safely, as we strive to preserve the health of our university community and Birmingham. It is important to gradually bring individuals back on campus to promote social distancing. This phased approach will also allow us to evaluate strategies for effectiveness and minimize risk.

Guidance and requirements are subject to change and will be updated prior to future phases of re-entry, including a return to in-person instruction. Individuals who have responsibilities described within each of the phases and are anticipated to return to campus, along with their supervisors, will be contacted with specific guidance as soon as possible. For the latest updates and information continue to check this website. 

Sincerely,

Ray L. Watts, M.D.

President, UAB

 

The following describes the university’s re-entry plan. The Health System is on a separate plan to transition from the Limited Business Model and began resuming clinical operations in early May.
During Modified Business Operations, UAB will begin a gradual, phased approach with some groups/functions returning to campus before others. Clinical and research personnel will be the first to return to campus following the approval of units’ operational plans. The safety of our employees is of paramount concern. We are actively developing additional capabilities to enhance our ability to track symptoms and trace proximities and contact.

Guiding Principles

The University of Alabama at Birmingham’s policies and protocols for responding to the COVID-19 pandemic are based on the core values and mission pillars of our strategic plan, Forging the Future.

Five principles guide decisions on when and how *students, faculty and staff return to campus:

1

Preserve the health of our university community and Birmingham.
Reflects our commitment to an inclusive solution to do what is right for all constituencies.

2

Maintain and deliver on our education, research and community engagement by continuing to recruit and enroll students, teach those students, conduct research, and help stimulate the Alabama economy.
Reflects our commitment to constantly innovate and solve problems in the face of adversity, even in how we deliver on our strategic plan.

3

Preserve and maintain university operations necessary to support mission-critical activities, both now and into the future.
Reflects our commitment to being good stewards of our assets, including taxpayer-funded assets.

4

Treat students and employees fairly and equitably.
Reflects our commitment to respect for one another and to ensuring the trust necessary for successful collaboration on making the right decisions.

5

Remain fiscally solvent now and into the future so as to be able to deliver on mission-critical activities for the long term.
Reflects our commitment to be accountable to each other and to other constituencies depending on UAB to achieve its missions.

 

*Students: Students in clinical areas must receive approval from their program to return to campus. Researchers at post-doctoral and graduate/pre-doctoral levels, may continue or initiate studies on site following approved unit operational plans to ensure the safe return to campus. Other trainees engaged in research, such as undergraduate students and volunteers, must request approval through the Office of Research exception process.

 

UAB and the University of Alabama System leveraged its extensive expertise in higher education and health care – including our world-renown infectious disease physicians and researchers – to develop this re-entry plan. We also consulted will colleagues across the country and referenced effective materials created by institutions like Baylor and Duke that had adopted sound strategies for re-entry to campus.