Given the ongoing global concerns around COVID-19 (coronavirus) pandemic, the UTMB School of Health Professions want to do our part to keep our entire campus community safe and to contribute to the management of this growing public health crisis.

The UTMB Office of the Provost is closely monitoring developments and working with others in UTMB leadership and the four schools to assess risks and plan/act accordingly.

SHP Students, faculty and staff are reminded to actively check their UTMB email several times a day for UTMB broadcast announcements, direct communications from the Provost, SHP Office of the Dean, Academic and Student Affairs, Department Chairs and Faculty advisors regarding plans and updates.

Finally, please be aware that our Dean, Dr. David Brown is meeting with UTMB Leadership and the Chairs of every department daily and we are looking for ways to provide an optimal teaching and learning experience for our students. We also want our students to be sure and communicate with your Department Chairs and/or Faculty Advisors about any questions or concerns that you have so that they can provide support and assistance. However, if your questions are not urgent, we ask you to wait for further communication that may address your concerns.

Please continue to monitor this page, SHP COVID website, as well as the UTMB COVID-19 comprehensive website.

This site is managed and updated by:

Michelle Conley
Student Affairs Program Manager
Office of Academic and Student Affairs

Here is the guidance as of:

Update Announcements

Update - March 13, 2020

Update - March 13, 2020

On Friday, March 13, the guidance for students regarding the continuation of classes is as follows:

  • If you are a student who is currently on spring break, your spring break is extended another week (through Friday, March 20). Please monitor the communications you will receive over the coming week, for information regarding when you may return to campus and the continuation of on-campus activities.
  • If you are a student who is currently on a clinical rotation, please monitor the communications you will receive, and follow up with your school deans for further instruction.
  • Program Specific: Students will receive a follow up notice regarding specific information from your Department Chair.

Many of our students and faculty have been or are currently engaged in personal travel to several domestic and international locations for Spring Break. Wherever you are, we encourage all members of the UTMB community to be conscientious in following CDC guidelines for staying healthy.

Given the potential for exposure and CDC recommendations for social distancing, UTMB School of Health Professions has made the following decisions until further notice:

  • All SHP on-campus events scheduled will be canceled or postponed
  • Student Organization events are be canceled or postponed.
  • Open House and Campus Tours have been suspected.

SHP Student Resources & General Information

Online Learning & Remote Instruction

Online Learning & Remote Instruction

View: SHP Remote Learning Information and Resources

Beginning Monday, March 23, all in-person course activities on the UTMB campus will be suspended. UTMB will shift courses to online and remote instruction until further notice. All faculty should move their courses to online or alternative delivery by March 23, 2020.  A status update will be provided to the campus community by March 31, 2020, as the situation continues to evolve.

FAQ's for Students on Clinical Experiences

FAQ's for Students on Clinical Experiences

Important Note: Clinical affiliation site policies are changing daily and students are instructed to monitor email communications from their Department Chair and/or Faculty Director of Clinical Education.

Download: FAQs for SHP Students on Clinical Experiences (.pdf, Draft - March 18, 2020)

Office of Academic and Student Affairs

Office of Academic and Student Affairs

The Office of Academic and Student Affairs is here to assist students in accessing existing services, connect them to resources, or to help students address issues that fall outside of the scope of our programs and services. Students may contact our office via:

Academic Affairs
E: shpacdaf@utmb.edu
P: 409-772-9411

Student Affairs
E: shpstdaf@utmb.edu
P: 409-772-3030

Counseling

School of Health Professions Student Counseling

Tips for Managing Concerns & Emotions about COVID-19 (pdf)

I know that there is widespread concern in our community about the Coronavirus Disease (COVID-19), and I want you to know that your health is top priority. With the increasing uncertainty and growing number of infected individuals around the world, I encourage you to take responsibility for yourself and your family. It is important to take a proactive approach to minimize exposure.

I want you to know that I can provide resources to you via online means, if you would like to request a session from home. I would like to suggest a private space with internet access and a computer, laptop or tablet. It is also possible to conduct a session with a smartphone, but it is generally not as reliable or comfortable.

To request/schedule a session, send an email to jswashin@utmb.edu and include the following:

  • Name, Student ID and Department
  • Contact number (in case we experience technical difficulties)
  • Dates and times that are feasible for you

We will eventually be on the other side of this. Please let me know if you have any additional questions.

J. Shayne Washington, EdD
Sr. Specialist for Learning and Career Counseling

University Office of Student Health and Counseling

University Office of Student Health and Counseling is still open and providing counseling services through electronic means. In addition, the 24/7/365 mental health crisis line is always available at 409-747-4357 (HELP).

Travel

Additional Clarification on Travel

Effective immediately, UTMB employees and students who decide to travel for personal reasons are required to report their travel to the university.

  1. An online form has been created (https://utmb.us/3v4) and should be used to inform UTMB of any personal travel plans. If you will be traveling both internationally and domestically, please complete two forms. Your UTMB username and password are required to log in to the form.
  2. All UTMB employees and students returning from any kind of travel (including student clinical experiences) UTMB sponsored or personal, domestic or international—MUST contact by phone the following respectively, for telephone screening before returning to a UTMB campus or clinic location:
    1. Students: Call Student Health at 409-747-9508. Once Students have been screened and cleared, Student Health will email a travel clearance letter.
    2. Employees: Call Employee Health at 409-747-9172 or employeehealth.clinic@utmb.edu. Employee Health staff will review messages in the evenings and on weekends to expedite responses to faculty and staff, so please contact them immediately upon your return.
  3. Employees and students who have traveled will not be permitted to return to a UTMB campus or clinic unless cleared to do so by Employee Health or Student Health. Please note that you may be required to self-isolate by the County’s Health Authority until cleared for return.

These plans are evolving, and we wanted to inform our community as quickly as possible to enable you to begin making your own arrangements. We realize you may have questions that are not addressed here. Please know that our team is working diligently to accommodate this transition for our campus, and we will provide additional information as soon as possible.

If your questions are not urgent, we ask you to wait for further communication that may address your concerns.

Finally, we ask that you try to understand how difficult it is to make these decisions and request your patience as we seek to make the best decisions possible to keep everyone in our community healthy and safe, to do our part to help mitigate the spread of COVID-19, and to continue the university’s mission to improve health for the people of Texas and around the world by offering innovative education and training, pursuing cutting-edge research and providing the highest quality patient care.

Download: UTMB Travel Restrictions (PDF)

What is meant by Domestic Travel?

"Domestic travel" is long-distance, overnight travel by public conveyance (e.g., aircraft, train, bus, ships, shared rides, etc.) or by personal vehicle to locations within the United States or its possessions and territories. This excludes one's usual commute to work or day trips to neighboring cities.

Health Education Center, Moody Medical Library and Old Red Student Lounge

Health Education Center, Moody Medical Library and Old Red Student Lounge

The Health Education Center and library will be closed to student activity. Students will continue to have access to educational materials online. The student lounge in the basement of the Ashbel Smith building (Old Red) will be open to students from 8:00 am to 8:00 pm. Please contact the Office of Student Services for additional information.

Campus Visitors and Prospective Students

Campus Tours

The safety of our visitors and campus community is our top priority. UTMB Health is proactively expanding its restrictions and implementing new guidelines to safeguard our students, trainees, faculty, staff, and patients. As such, open houses and campus tours have been suspended until further notice.

Virtual Open House / Skype Sessions

The University of Texas Medical Branch, School of Health Professions is now offering Virtual Open House events, which are online Skype webinar sessions for students to get firsthand information about our programs of study. For more information, please visit https://shp.utmb.edu/openhouse.

Exposure

Exposure

Any student or employee who is ill or who believes they may have been exposed to coronavirus cannot return to campus and should follow CDC guidelines for self-isolation. If any student or employee is diagnosed with COVID-19, it is requested that you notify the university for a telephone screening before returning to a UTMB campus or clinic location

  1. Students: Call Student Health at 409-747-9508. Once Students have been screened and cleared, Student Health will email a travel clearance letter.
  2. Employees: Call Employee Health at 409-747-9172 or employeehealth.clinic@utmb.edu. Employee Health staff will review messages in the evenings and on weekends to expedite responses to faculty and staff, so please contact them immediately upon your return.

Student Health Benefits

Supporting Students during the COVID-19 Outbreak

It is a pivotal time for student health. Now more than ever, students need the right resources to keep them safe and healthy.

Academic HealthPlans (AHP), in partnership with your student health insurance plan carrier, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas (BCBSTX), are offering a variety of services to students including a Student Assistance Program (SAP) and Virtual Visits with $0 copay.

This document outlines the services available to them through AHP and BCBSTX.

Download: UT-System-Student-Health-COVID-19-Resources (.pdf)

Students can contact Academic Health Plans by sending an email to support@ahpcare.com or calling us at 1-855-247-7587.