President’s Message on return-to-campus planning

UT Health San Antonio has begun its planning efforts for some portion of the workforce to return to campus. This effort will occur over the next several months and will occur in phases. Currently, 70% of our workforce is successfully working from home and, for now, these individuals should continue to do so. When it is time for you to return to working on campus, you will be so informed by your supervisor.

It is imperative that we plan a return-to-campus strategy sensibly and cautiously as we work to ensure the safety of our employees and students, consider the needed PPE and monitor the impact on disease transmission resulting from the limited reopening of businesses as addressed in the Mayor’s Declaration.

The following areas will be prioritized in the return-to-campus planning:

Priority 1 — Clinical Continuity: Clinical personnel in direct patient care areas, most of whom have remained on campus to deliver essential patient care services, are in the top-priority group to return to campus.

Priority 2 — Research Continuity: Beginning the middle of next week, the Office of the VPR is executing a phased plan for the return to campus of research personnel. The VPR will communicate this plan soon and those who are expected to return will be so advised. Research lab meetings and research projects that have successfully transitioned to being fully remote, should continue virtually.

Priority 3 — Academic Continuity: Education leaders are actively engaged in planning a phased return over the next several weeks for different aspects of our educational missions, prioritizing clinical rotations, clinical simulations and specialized laboratory learning activities.

Priority 4 — Operations/Business Continuity: Administrative and departmental support units will continue to work from home, where possible, and, when a return-to-campus plan is launched for these team members, it will be communicated.

Additional information related to the comprehensive workplace safety measures in place across our university will be provided next week. These measures will reflect our adherence to the guidelines promulgated by the CDC regarding universal masking, universal screening, social distancing, sanitation and hygiene precautions.  Important information will be continuously updated on the COVID-19 site including helpful instructions on what to expect when returning to campus, as well as safety measures and expectations of departments and personnel.

Thank you for your continued hard work and diligence in delivering our missions. This organization has taken a profound leadership role across our community, demonstrating daily how We Make Lives Better®.  Of that, I could not be more proud.

With appreciation,

William L. Henrich, M.D., MACP
President and Professor of Medicine

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