COVID-19 Resources for UAB Employees


Explore resources from UAB Human Resources below designed to help UAB employees and their families through the emerging and ongoing public health issues surrounding the novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Visit uab.edu/coronavirus for the latest COVID-19 updates from UAB.


  • Benefits Resources

    Benefits Updates | TIAA Webinars


    Benefits Updates


    Voluntary 403(b) Employer Match Suspension

    As our limited business operations model continues, it has become necessary to announce a benefit program change to help address the financial impacts of COVID-19.

    After consultation with the Board of Trustees, as well as campus and medicine leadership, UAB has made the difficult decision to temporarily suspend the voluntary retirement 403(b) employer match program. The UA System 403(b) employer match will be suspended beginning in May 2020 through September 2020. The UAB Hospital Management LLC 403(b) employer match will be suspended May 2020 through December 2020. This measure is being implemented across the UA System entities and will provide essential cost savings in addition to the other measures that have been implemented.

    You are not required to take any action related to this change. A list of common FAQs may be found here to address any questions you may have related to this decision. Any additional questions can be directed to the Benefits office directly at benefits@uab.edu.


    Stop Dependent Care FSA deductions if your daycare has closed or daycare needs have changed

    If your daycare has closed or your daycare needs have changed, you can cancel or adjust your dependent care FSA account. You would also be able to restart your contributions once the daycare reopens. To make the change submit a life event in the UAB for Me portal at uab.edu/hrintouch.


    CARES Act updates to voluntary retirement plans offer economic relief

    The Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security (CARES) Act recently passed by Congress offers some relief from the economic effects of the COVID-19 pandemic through updates to voluntary retirement plans. For details and eligibility requirements, visit TIAA's online CARES Act guide or refer to UAB Benefits Office guidance for University of Alabama System participants to learn more.

    Virtual counseling appointments with a TIAA consultant are available by phone and virtual meeting. A TIAA financial consultant can direct you to important information on the CARES Act and help you review your asset allocation strategy to determine if it is in line with your future goals. Go to UAB TIAA Virtual Meetings to schedule an appointment.

    TIAA Virtual Counseling (PDF) | CARES Act Provisions affecting Retirement Plans (PDF)


    Medical Plan Coverage for COVID-19

    As concerns over the spread of the Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19) grow, we want to inform you of the steps Viva Health, Blue Cross Blue Shield and UAB have taken to remove barriers to appropriate testing and care effective through April 13, 2020. Unless specified, the following applies to all plans offered through UAB:

    • Testing: 100 percent coverage of FDA-approved lab testing from a participating/in-network lab as well as the Alabama Department of Public Health and at approved laboratory locations in accordance with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines on all plans. No deductible, co-payment, or co-insurance will apply to the lab test for any plan and prior authorization is not required. There will also be no cost-sharing for an in-network office visit, urgent care center visit, or emergency department visit related to COVID-19 testing.
    • Telehealth: Members can have telehealth visits from any location with any in-network provider who is providing medically appropriate covered services. Members were not charged a co-payment for telehealth visits with their in-network provider or UAB’s eMedicine platform through April 13. Post April 13 regular office visit co-pay applied.
    • Treatment: While the lab test and telehealth visits are covered at 100 percent as described above, applicable cost-sharing for treatment of COVID-19 in office visits, ER visits, urgent care visits will apply as they do for other illnesses. In-patient treatment is being covered at 100 percent from March 13-May 31.

    COVID-19 Updates for VIVA Health (PDF) | COVID-19 Updates for BCBS (PDF)


    2019 Flexible Spending Account Filing Deadline Extended

    Employees who participated in a 2019 healthcare or dependent daycare flexible spending account will now have until April 30 to file any eligible 2019 claims. The deadline has been extended from March 31 in order to provide additional leeway due to the ongoing COVID-19 impact. Any 2019 claim must be filed by April 30 in order to be reimbursed. You may file your claims directly with Payflex online at payflex.com. If you have any questions, you may reach PayFlex direct at 1-844-PAYFLEX or the benefits department at benefits@uab.edu.


    CARES Act to allow over-the-counter (OTC) drugs and medicines without prescription

    As part of the CARES Act signed into law March 27, 2020, participants in the Health Savings Account (HSA) and Flexible Spending Account (FSA) can now purchase the following products:

    1. This law allows patients to use Health Savings Account (HSA), Heath Reimbursement Arrangements (HRA) and Flexible Spending Accounts (FSA) funds to purchase over-the-counter (OTC) drugs and medicines, including those needed in quarantine and social distancing, without a prescription from a physician.
    2. This law also adds feminine hygiene products to the list of eligible over-the-counter items.

    These OTC changes are effective for expenses incurred after December 31, 2019, and do not have an expiration date. For members using their PayFlex debit card for newly eligible OTC items, the purchase is typically “verified as eligible or not” at the point of sale using Inventory Information Approval System (IIAS) when paying for eligible items at various locations or online. Given the new legislation, members should allow time for the debit card system to update. Updating the card system isn’t something PayFlex manages or has control over. If the PayFlex debit card doesn’t work at time of purchase, members can pay out of pocket and request reimbursement from their PayFlex account funds.



    TIAA Webinars

    Register online at tiaa.org/webinars. View flyer for more information.

    • Estate planning basics, May 12, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Start to finish: A woman’s guide to saving and investing, May 12, 2-3 p.m.
    • Marketproof your retirement, May 13, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Paying yourself: Income options in retirement, May 13, 2-3 p.m.
    • The 411 on 529 college savings plans, May 14, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Planning for diminished capacity, June 16, 12 a.m.-noon
    • Inside money: Managing income and debt, June 16, 2-3 p.m.
    • Responsible Investing: Portfolios with purpose, June 18, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Equally prepared, June 23, 11 a.m.-noon
    • The power of saving, June 25, 11 a.m.-noon
  • Wellness Resources

    Fitness at Home | Healthy Eating | Preventative Steps


    Find wellness resources below to help keep you and your family healthy at home. For more, join My Health Rewards or visit UAB Employee Wellness online.


    Fitness at Home



    Healthy Eating

    Employee Wellness Recipe Hub

    Explore UAB Employee Wellness's online collection of recipes and healthy information.


    Healthy Pantry Items



    Preventative Steps

    UAB Infographics


    CDC Infographics

  • Mental Health Resources

    Mental Health Screens | EACC Virtual Programs | Online Resources | Apps


    Explore mental health services, self-care tips and more to help you through this rapidly evolving public health emergency. For more resources, visit the UAB Employee Assistance & Counceling Center online.


    Mental Health Screens

    Online mental health screenings are a fast, free and confidential way to check for signs of mental health issues. Check out some of the available online screens below.
    Please note — online screens are not a substitute for consultation with a health professional. Regardless of the results of a screen, if you have any concerns, see your doctor, counselor or other mental health professional.

    • UAB Medicine Wellbeing Index: This online self assessment tool allows users to measure burnout, assess valuable resources and compare their scores to peers, as well as track progress overtime to promote self awareness.
    • Mental Health America: MHA offers free, condential and anonymous mental health tests for depression, anxiety, work health, addiction and more — plus guidance for those unsure of which test they should take.
    • Additional Online Screening: See EACC's list of available mental health screens focused on burnout, depression, eating disorders, PTSD and veterans issues, and more.


    EACC Virtual Programs

    The UAB Employee Assistance & Counseling Center is offering a variety of online programs and events to support you in achieving successful work-life integration during this unprecedented time of uncertainty and social distancing.Visit the EACC Events Calendar to view all upcoming events. This programs is free and open to all UAB employees and members of their immediate household.

    • Caregivers Support Group: A weekly support group for hospital employees and healthcare professionals working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Two sessions meet remotely via Zoom, Wednesdays from noon to 1:30 p.m. and 4-5:30 p.m. Interested participants can sign up online at go.uab.edu/EACC-Support.
    • Virtual Yoga: UAB EACC Gentle Yoga instructor's release twice weekly sessions on her virtual yoga channel — go.uab.edu/VirtualYoga
    • Virtual Meditation: EACC counselors lead two virtual mindfulness sessions a week to help you achieve a state of alert and focused relaxation. See flyer for details.
    • SmartPath Webinar Series: Monthly financial wellness webinars for UAB employees provide engaging, practical and actionable advice on a variety of financial topics. Visit uab.edu/smartpath for a complete list of topics.


    Online Resources



    Mental Health Apps

    myStrength

    EACC has partnered with myStrength to provide free and confidential access to web and mobile e-learning tools on topics such as stress management, depression, anxiety, chronic pain, parenting, substance use concerns, trauma and more. Visit myStrength for UAB online.


    Apps for Mental Health

    Breath2Relax — guided breathing exercises
    Android | iPhone

    Headspace — personal meditation guide
    Android | iPhone

    Self Help for Anxiety Management — developed by a university team of psychologists, computer scientists and student users
    Android | iPhone

    Daylio Journal — mood tracker and private journal
    Android | iPhone

    Mood Tools — tools to deal with depression developed by the Anxiety & Depression Association of America
    Android | iPhone

    Fear Tools — tools to deal with anxiety developed by the Anxiety & Depression Association of America
    Android | iPhone

    Remente — goal setting and self-improvement
    Android | iPhone

    WoeBot — self-care app using Cognitive Behavior Therapy (CBT)
    Android | iPhone

    Wysa — mood tracker, mindfulness exercises, mental health assessment, powered by AI
    Android | iPhone

    Youper — emotional health assistant, powered by AI
    Android | iPhone

    Ten Percent Happier — features free coronavirus Sanity Guide, guided meditations for coronavirus Responders, along with a podcast, talks and newsletter on how to handle coronavirus anxiety. Healthcare workers not currently subscribed to Ten Percent Happier receive free access by emailing care@tenpercent.com for instructions.
    Android | iPhone

  • Childcare Resources

    Emergency Family & Medical Leave Extension Act | Working Parents | Childcare Providers | Virtual Programs | Summer Camps | Resources for Parents


    With childcare in high demand, to help you get started in your search for childcare options, the following resources have been identified for employees who are working onsite and experiencing the need for immediate childcare due to school and childcare center closures. This space will be updated as new resources become available. If you have a community resource that you would like to share, email uabcdc@uab.edu.


    Emergency Family & Medical Leave Extension Act

    Employees who cannot work or telework due to closure of school or childcare for son or daughter because of COVID-19 may qualify for additional leave benefits under Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) with the passing of the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Extension Act (EFMLEA).

    See UAB HR's Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) Leave webpage for information on eligibility, how to apply and more.



    Guidance for Working Parents

    Employees who are asked to return to on-campus work to support Modified Business Operations should discuss with their supervisor any challenges in their ability to return to on-campus work due to childcare responsibilities. It is important that employees returning to on-campus work during Modified Business Operations do not bring their children to work with them. Bringing children to the workplace may compromise important safety and risk-reduction measures implemented by UAB. See resources below or contact your supervisor or HR representative for additional questions.

    • Childcare Providers: Employees who are asked to return to on-campus work are encouraged to look at available childcare options using the resources provided by UAB HR.
    • Alternative Work Schedules: Employees who are asked to return to on-campus work and are unable to find full-time childcare are encouraged to talk to their supervisors about potential modifications to their work schedules or duties, including telecommuting or alternative work schedule options, modifications to work hours, or staggered or alternating reporting for on-campus work.
      UAB remote employees — visit go.uab.edu/remotework for technology and other tools to assist you in effectively working from home.
    • FFCRA Leave: Employees who have childcare responsibilities based on closures due to COVID-19 may also be eligible for leave under the Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA). See UAB HR's Families First Coronavirus Response Act Leave webpage for information about the FFCRA, including how to apply for leave.


    Available Childcare Providers

    Emergency Childcare for Frontline Workers

    • YMCA: Select YMCA locations are open to provide childcare for essential workers with children enrolled in K-8th grade. For information on hours of operation, program cost, eligibility criteria and more visit the YMCA online. Or select a participating location below to register:
    • JCC Operation Cares Day Camp: JCC is providing a day camp for children of essential workers to enjoy a day of camp filled with sports, games, crafts, movies and more. Operation Cares Day Camp is open exclusively to children ages 6 weeks to 12 years of essential workers, as defined by Jefferson County Department of Health. Verification of parent essential employment is required. For information on hours of operation, program cost, eligibility criteria and more visit the Birmingham JCC online.


    Other Childcare Options

    • Childcare Resources: The Birmingham nonprofit provides a free database of childcare facilities in Jefferson County and the City of Birmingham that are open during the COVID-19 pandemic. Visit the website for current vacancies.
    • Wyndy: Wyndy is a Birmingham-based babysitting app that serves more than 18,000 families and is available to help UAB employees and residents to book a sitter. Parents can post any job for free, and then select from sitters who express interest in the job. Visit Wyndy.com to get started.


    • Virtual Programs

      CORD Virtual Summer Programs

      In response to COVID-19 pandemic, CORE is offering live online summer camp programs featuring hands-on, kit-based science experiences led by live instructors.

      • Gear-Up Jefferson County
        • AGES: Rising 8th & 9th graders
        • WHEN: Chemical Engineering, June 22-26 & July 13-17; Food for Thought, June 29-July 3 & July 20-24; Build Your Dream House, June 8—19; The Road to Robotics, June 15-19 & and July 13–17; Computer Programming, June 22-26 & July 20-24
        • REGISTRATION: Download application and submit by June 5.
      • Middle School Summer Science Programs
        • AGES: Rising 5th-8th graders
        • WHEN: Junior Scientist, June 22-26 & July 13-17; DNA and You, June 22-26 & July 13-17; Food for Thought, June 29-July 3 & July 20-24; Chemical Engineering, June 22-26 & July 13-17
        • REGISTRATION: Download application and submit by June 5.
      • Summer Science Institute
        • AGES: Rising 10th-12th graders
        • WHEN: SSI Fundamentals of Cellular and Molecular Biology, July 6-10; SSII Advanced Principals of Immunology, Microbiology and Biotechnology, July 20-24
        • REGISTRATION: Download SSI application or SSII application and submit by June 5.


      Birmingham Summer Institute

      In response to COVID-19 pandemic, BSI's summer program is offering fun, hands-on and engaging online activities that further students growth in math, reading, wellness and social-emotional learning.

      • AGES: Rising 3rd-8th gradeers
      • WHEN: June 8-July 24, Mon-Thurs, 10 a.m.-12 p.m. or 1-3 p.m. (optional customized learning opportunities on Fridays)
      • REGISTRATION: Non-refundable $50 registration fee due by Friday, June 5; $150 balance to be paid by Friday, June 26. Click here to register online.


      UAB SOE Summer Learning Experiences

      Developmentally appropriate learning experiences in the areas of literacy, math, science inquiry and the arts, implemented by teaching candidates in the UAB Early Childhood Program. See flyer for more information.

      • AGES: 4 and 5 year olds
      • WHEN: June 1-July 31
      • REGISTRATION: Sign up online by Thursday, May 28.
        UAB School of Education Update: Thank you for your interest. We are full and no longer able to accept families. Please continue to check UAB School of Education social media channels. If sessions become available or other programs offer virtual learning opportunities, SOE will post that information there.


      Summer Camps

      Arts Camps

      • Space One Eleven Summer Art Camp
        • AGES: Rising 2nd-12th graders
        • WHEN: I’m an Alabama Artist, Too! (rising 2nd-5th graders), July 13-17 and July 20-July 24; Textile Art Camp, June 1-5; Drawing Camp, June 1-5; Bookmaking Camp, June 15-19; Sewing Camp, June 15-19; Fashion Camp, June 22-26; Portfolio Development Camp, June 22-26; Clay Camp, June 22-26 or July 6-10; Printmaking Camp, July 6-10
        • REGISTRATION: Space is limited. Families are asked to limit enrollment to two camps per rising 6th-12th grader and one camp per rising 2nd-5th grader. Click here to enroll and/or apply for tuition assistance.
      • Red Mountain Theatre Camps
      • Birmingham Children’s Theatre Camps
      • Afilm Camp
      • Birmingham School of Music Summer Camp
      • Alabama Ballet
        • AGES: 4-19 years
        • WHEN: Intensive (ages 11-19), June 29-July 25; Junior Camp (ages 8-12, July 20-31; Tutus and Tiaras (ages 4-7), July 27-31
        • REGISTRATION: Select a camp and follow the link above to register online.
      • Mason Music Rock Band Camp
      • Camp Fashionista
      • Camp STAR at Virginia Samford Theatre
      • Dance Foundation
        • AGES: Rising K5-12th graders
        • WHEN: Once Upon a Fairytale (rising K5), July 6-10/July 20-24; Once Upon a Ballet (rising 1st-3rd grade), July 13-17; Adventures in Enchanted Lands (rising 1st-3rd grade), July 27-31; Dance Exploration (rising 3rd-6th grade), August 3-7; Dance Workshop (rising 6th-12th grade), August 3-7
        • REGISTRATION: Click here to register online.
      • Acting Out Performing Arts Academy

      Sports Camps

      Day Camps



      Resources for Parents

  • Support for Remote Employees

    UAB Remote Workers | L&D Virtual Workshops | LinkedIn Learning | Online Resources


    Tools for UAB Remote Workers

    Temporary Telecommuting Agreement


    UAB Remote Toolkit

    The UAB IT department's Remote Working Toolkit offers you access to technology and other tools to help empower success, no matter where you need to work: go.uab.edu/remotework. For troubleshooting tips and connectivity updates from UAB IT, click here.


    Recommended Resources from HRIS



    Learning & Development Virtual Workshops

    To support our new and rapidly changing reality, Learning and Development has postponed all in-person workshop and replaced them with a full schedule of online learning programs and events to support employees. Visit the L&D Learning Calendar to view all upcoming events.

    Programs are organized in three areas to give you opportunities to connect with others, share challenges and ideas, take advantage of learning during times of unprecedented change...

    • The Resilient Self: Programs and resources to help people manage new realities and provide ideas and tools to maintain productivity, leverage strengths, improving communication and balance work and life.
    • The Resilient Team: Programs to help teams connected and engaged and work effectively under stress.
    • The Resilient Leader: The Resilient Leader Virtual Series is designed to give leaders an opportunity to reflect and get revitalized by spending time with colleagues in an interactive session. Each session will have a new topic relevant for right now and plenty of time for discussion. Start your day by learning with other leaders, get ideas, inspiration and guidance as we navigate uncharted waters together. Sessions are Tuesdays and Thursdays in April, 9-10 a.m. Click here and select a date to register.


    LinkedIn Learning

    Explore recommended LinkedIn Learning courses on a variety of topics related to successfully managing change and working remotely. Membership to LinkedIn Learning is free to all benefit-eligible UAB employees.

    Staying in Touch

    • Communicating within Teams
      • Communicating via email (3m 57s)
    • Working Remotely
      • Staying in touch (3m 19s)
      • Using technology to build connections (3m 25s)
      • How to prevent feeling isolated (3m 27s)
      • Building rapport with remote colleagues (3m 26s)

    Managing Stress

    Overwhelmed?

    • How to Manage Feeling Overwhelmed
      • An overview of overwhelm (1m 56s)
      • Coming to your senses to disrupt stress (3m 47s)
      • Cultivating flow with positive emotions (4m 17s)
      • Focus on a new perspective (3m 35s)
      • Take imperfect action to boost focus (3m 48s)
      • Using strategic distractions (3m 4s)
      • Getting to the core of your overwhelm (3m 39s)
      • Recognizing stress sensitivity (4m 10s)
      • Ending overwhelm for good (4m 59s)

    Resiliency & Productivity



    Online Resources

  • Additional Resources

    Families First Coronavirus Response Act | Financial Planning | Resources for Caregivers | HR Closures & Cancellations


    Families First Coronavirus Response Act

    As of April 1, 2020, the Emergency Family and Medical Leave Expansion Act (EFMLEA) and the Emergency Paid Sick Leave Act (EPSLA) provide paid leave to eligible employees of a covered employer under certain defined circumstances associated with the COVID-19 pandemic. For information, visit HR's FMLA website.



    Financial Planning

    SmartPath COVID-19 Webinars for UAB

    • June 10: Coronavirus — What’s Your Next Financial Move?
      How is the spread of Coronavirus affecting economic activity, financial markets and more importantly ... your livelihood? Join SmartPath President Alok Deshpande for this important webinar event to understand the current and potential implications of the pandemic on your money, what may still lie ahead (financially) and reasons for optimism going forward.
      Click here to register.
    • July 21: What Should I Do During These Uncertain Times?
      SmartPath has created a webinar specifically aimed at reducing financial stress resulting from the Coronavirus. Join SmartPath CEO Alok Deshpande to learn your age-specific strategy on what you should do (and not do) during uncertain financial times. He’ll share how to respond in your 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s and 60s.
      Click here to register.
    • August 19: Investing in the Age of Uncertainty
      COVID-19 has created massive uncertainty for investors. With optimism about containing the pandemic fading, markets are reacting violently to the rapidly changing environment. Join SmartPath CEO Alok Deshpande to take a deep breath and see steps you should take.
      Click here to register.


    TIAA Financial Webinars

    Register online at tiaa.org/webinars. View flyer for more information.

    • Estate planning basics, May 12, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Start to finish: A woman’s guide to saving and investing, May 12, 2-3 p.m.
    • Marketproof your retirement, May 13, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Paying yourself: Income options in retirement, May 13, 2-3 p.m.
    • The 411 on 529 college savings plans, May 14, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Planning for diminished capacity, June 16, 12 a.m.-noon
    • Inside money: Managing income and debt, June 16, 2-3 p.m.
    • Responsible Investing: Portfolios with purpose, June 18, 11 a.m.-noon
    • Equally prepared, June 23, 11 a.m.-noon
    • The power of saving, June 25, 11 a.m.-noon


    Online Resources



    Resources for Caregivers


    Caregivers Support Group

    The UAB Employee Assistance & Counseling Center is launching a weekly online support group for hospital employees and healthcare professionals working during the COVID-19 pandemic. Two sessions meet remotely via Zoom, Wednesdays from noon to 1:30 p.m. and 4-5:30 p.m. Interested participants can sign up online at go.uab.edu/EACC-Support. This programs is free and open to all UAB employees and members of their immediate household.


    Online Resources


    Caregiver Wall of Thanks

    Check out the mesaages of thanks for all UAB and UAB Medicine employees working on the front line of defense against COVID-19 for our great state and beyond.



    HR Closures & Cancellations

    Wellscreens: All 2020 Wellscreen dates scheduled March 16 through April 30 have been cancelled. Employees will be notified if additional Wellscreen appointments are made available at a later date in the year. Wellscreens Fax Forms will now be accepted through the end of 2020.

    Farm Stand at UAB: Boozer Farms has temporarily suspended the Farm Stand until further notice.

    Birmingham Corporate Challenge: The city-wide event scheduled for May has been postponed. UAB Employee Wellness is monitoring the situation and will continue to provide updates to registered participants.

    Employee Assistance & Counseling Center: is closed to in-person appointments; however, counselors will continue to provide counseling services via telemental health/distance counseling; see uab.edu/eacc for details. All in-person seminars and events are cancelled or postponed until further notice.

    Learning & Development: All on-campus workshops and events are cancelled or postponed until further notice.

    TIAA Consultants: On-campus appointments with consultants from TIAA have been temporarily suspended. To schedule a meeting by phone visit tiaa.org/schedulenow or call 1-800-732-8353, weekdays between 7 a.m. to 7 p.m. to make an appointment.

  • Furlough Resources

    The COVID-19 pandemic continues to evolve and have a significant impact on UAB’s business operations. Initially, UAB elected to pay employees who were not working during limited business operations. Unfortunately, the fluid and dynamic nature of this health crisis has made this offering impossible to sustain. Due to the financial impact the COVID-19 health crisis has had on UAB, the very difficult decision was made to implement a furlough after the careful review of many options.

    Furloughed employees are eligible for unemployment benefits and UAB is doing everything possible to assist with filing the claim to expedite the process. Visit the Resources for Furloughed Employees page for information and resources to assist furloughed UAB employees during this process and throughout this difficult time.