As a health care setting, UConn Health still requires face masks and physically distancing inside our facilities. Get the latest on visitor guidelines, COVID-19 vaccines, and safety measures we have in place.

COVID Testing for Employees

Updated 8/26/2021

Weekly Employee COVID-19 Testing: Beginning on September 11*, 2021

If you have received an approved exemption from receiving the COVID vaccine for either medical or religious reasons, or if you are awaiting a decision on your exemption/deferral request, you must be tested for COVID-19 each week.

All exempted Workforce Members will be required to complete a self-administered anterior nares test, which must be performed and collected onsite at one of the locations listed below.

  • You are not permitted to test at alternate locations.
  • All testing for our weekly testing requirement must be performed on-site at a UConn Health designated location.
  • Weekly testing/screening must be performed during your scheduled work hours. Please coordinate your testing schedule with your supervisor/manager.
  • You are required to comply with weekly testing each week you report to work (whether virtually, on-site, or traveling for business).
    • If traveling, you must comply with protective requirements related to out-of-state travel.
  • Once you are vaccinated you no longer have to participate in the weekly testing.

*Employees who are members of statewide bargaining units — those other than UHP and AAUP — do not begin testing until October 1.

Testing Locations

Location Area  Testing Hours
Outpatient Pavilion
2nd Floor East Internal Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
2nd Floor West Endocrinology/Infectious Diseases Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
3rd Floor East Neurology Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
3rd Floor West Comprehensive Spine Center Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
4th Floor Cancer Center Lab Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
6th Floor East Surgery, General Surgery, Neurosurgery Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
8th Floor East Women's Center Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Main Building
C1055A Dental Clinics Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
University Tower 
2nd Floor, T2337 University Tower 24/7
South Road
11 South Road, 1st Floor Internal Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
21 South Road, 2nd Floor Dermatology, Mohs Surgery Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
UConn Musculoskeletal Institute
3rd Floor Orthopedic Surgery Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Avon 
2 Simsbury Road Orthopedic Surgery and Podiatry Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Canton 
117 Albany Turnpike Family Medicine, Walk-in Urgent Care Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
East Hartford
800 Connecticut Boulevard Internal Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Simsbury 
720 Hopmeadow Street Internal Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Southington 
1115 West Street, 2nd Floor Internal Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.
Storrs
Brown Building, 9 Walters Avenue, 1st Floor
(This location available for UConn Storrs Workforce Members only)
Human Resources Monday-Friday, 8 to 11 a.m.
One Royce Circle, Suite 104 Family Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 to 11 a.m.
West Hartford 
65 Kane Street Internal Medicine Monday-Friday, 8 a.m. to 12:30 p.m.

There are no out-of-pocket expenses for anyone mandated to complete the weekly testing requirement at our UConn Health designated locations.

Simple Steps to Completing Your Weekly COVID-19 Test

  • Arrive at testing site
  • Obtain your label
  • Verify your identity
  • Affix the label vertically to tube
  • Do your self-swab
  • Seal the specimen in the bag
  • Put it in the designated container

UConn Health will continue to monitor the current risk level of COVID-19 and continually reassess requirements to ensure community safety.

Frequently Asked Questions

If I received dose one of a two-dose series by September 10, and am scheduled to receive dose two in accordance with the FDA’s recommended timeframes for the vaccine, am I required to undergo weekly testing until I receive my second dose?

No. As long as you receive dose two in accordance with the FDA’s recommended timeframe, you will not be required to undergo weekly testing after you receive your first dose.

Updated 11/18/2020

Phase 4 COVID-19 Employee Testing

To continue to monitor the level of infection among our asymptomatic employees and to help inform our ongoing safety strategy and protocols, Phase 4 of our employee COVID-19 prevalence testing program will occur:

  • Tuesday, November 24, 6:30 to 11 a.m.
  • Thursday, December 3, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Tuesday, December 8, 6:30 to 9:30 a.m.
  • Friday, December 11, 1 to 4 p.m. 

Each eligible UConn Health employee received an invitation through email on November 19 to participate in Phase 4 of COVID-19 prevalence testing. Employees are eligible if they meet all of the following criteria:

  • Spends at least one day per week working in UConn Health facilities
  • Does not have any COVID-19 related symptoms
  • Has not tested positive for COVID-19 in the past
  • Is not currently under isolation or quarantine for any COVID-19 related reason

UConn Health employees who are not full-time telecommuters can follow the instructions in their email invitation to self-schedule voluntary testing through MyChart. Please self-schedule your test as soon as possible. Tests will be scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. Due to supplies and depending upon the level of interest in Phase 4, testing slots may be limited.

Questions or Concerns About COVID-19 or Testing?
Contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Communications Archive

11/18/2020: Phase 4 COVID-19 Employee Testing

Dear Colleagues,

As I have previously announced, UConn Health is moving forward with Phase 4 of our employee COVID-19 prevalence testing program, to continue to monitor the level of infection among our asymptomatic employees and to help inform our ongoing safety strategy and protocols.

This communication provides some detail about Phase 4.

Who?

Each UConn Health employee who meets the following criteria will be invited to participate in Phase 4 of COVID-19 prevalence testing:

  • Spends at least one day per-week working in UConn Health facilities;
  • Does not have any COVID-19 related symptoms;
  • Has not tested positive for COVID-19 in the past; and
  • Is not currently under isolation or quarantine for any COVID-19 related reason.

This reflects an expansion of UConn Health’s employee COVID-19 prevalence testing, which previously only included employees who work in clinical or clinical support positions.

When?

Phase 4 employee testing will be offered at the following times:

  • Tuesday, November 24, 6:30 to 9:30 a.m.
  • Thursday, December 3, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m.
  • Tuesday, December 8, 6:30 to 9:30 a.m.
  • Friday, December 11, 1 to 4 p.m.

Where?

Phase 4 testing will take place at the Outpatient Pavilion’s COVID-19 pedestrian sampling site (on the first floor). Employees who drive to the site to be tested should park in Garage 1. Testing is anticipated to take just a few minutes and there is no charge for parking for the first half hour.

Test Type?

Phase 4 will be conducted using a less-invasive and more comfortable anterior nares collection process.

How to Participate?

UConn Health employees who are not full-time telecommuters will be sent an invite and instructions by email explaining how to self-schedule testing through MyChart.

If you receive an invite to participate in Phase 4, but you have COVID-related symptoms, you have tested positive for COVID-19 previously OR you are currently under a COVID-related isolation or quarantine, please do not schedule testing under Phase 4 of UConn Health’s employee testing program.

Otherwise, please self-schedule your test as soon as possible. Tests will be scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. Due to supplies and depending upon the level of interest in Phase 4, testing slots may be limited.

Although voluntary, I hope that those of you invited to participate in Phase 4 will do so. Prevalence testing, together with our other efforts such as daily temperature and symptom monitoring, frequent handwashing, masking, and social distancing are truly making a difference and keeping our infection rates low. Thank you for all that you do to keep yourselves, your colleagues, our patients and the community healthy and safe.

Best Regards,
Andy

10/15/2020: Employee COVID-19 Testing Update

A message from Andrew Agwunobi, M.D., M.B.A., Chief Executive Officer, UConn Health

I wanted to make sure to continue to keep you informed about our COVID-19 Employee Testing Program’s progress and our plans for the future. We are currently working hard to prepare UConn Health should there be a re-surge of COVID-19 and one key ingredient of this plan is ongoing prevalence testing for our asymptomatic employees.

I am pleased to report that after completing Phase 3 of our COVID-19 prevalence testing in late September, our positivity rate from prevalence testing remains at zero.

Through Phase 3, we have conducted 804 COVID-19 tests on asymptomatic employees who volunteered to be tested. In Phase 1 (June/July), 460 employees volunteered to be tested; in Phase 2 (July/August), 253 employees volunteered; and in Phase 3 (September), 91 employees volunteered. Thus far, only our employees who work in clinical and clinical support areas have been invited to participate in the prevalence testing program.

Because our fight against COVID-19 is not over, we plan to continue with a Phase 4 of the program. While Phase 4 plans are still being developed, I can share that we will expand the opportunity to be tested to other employees beyond those who work in clinical and clinical support areas. We are also working hard to offer less invasive tests to our employees participating in prevalence testing (such as by using anterior nares collection or saliva), which will hopefully help with participation rates. Please stay tuned for details about Phase 4 in the coming weeks.

Please note, that this phased-approach for assessing the virus’s prevalence among our asymptomatic employees is different and separate from our ongoing testing of employees who have experienced an exposure or symptoms and tested positive for the virus. Since the beginning of the pandemic back in March, 91 employees, 17 residents, 4 students, and 3 affiliated staff have tested positive. That is a total of 115 employees and learners becoming infected, with the majority of positive cases identified back in the spring.

The low infection rates of the virus among asymptomatic and symptomatic members of the UConn Health Community demonstrates that our strong safety practices and policies are working. Thank you for continuing to support safety at UConn Health and please know that we will continue to work hard to keep you and our entire community safe.

If you have any questions about COVID-19 or testing, please refer to the COVID staff online resource page or contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

8/24/2020: Phase 3 COVID-19 Employee Testing

Dear Colleagues,

As you may recall, in mid-June UConn Health began a phased approach to COVID-19 prevalence testing for asymptomatic clinical workers, to determine the level of infection in employees throughout our clinical areas. Phase 1 of the testing (June 23-July 13) involved offering a voluntary PCR test to a random sampling of our approximately 2,800 clinical employees, and in Phase 2 (July 22-August 7), the voluntary PCR test was opened up to any clinical employee who had not already been tested. I am happy to report that, at the close of Phase 2, we have tested 713 employees and all tests have been negative for COVID-19.

While our testing so far has shown that the prevalence of the virus in our facilities is extremely low, we have decided to continue prevalence testing so we are able to remain well informed about our rate of infection and be prepared to take action if and when necessary. We believe this is particularly important as the fall approaches and as we and the larger community further open up and resume normal activities.

Phase 3 of UConn Health’s COVID-19 prevalence testing will involve 3 dates in September being set aside for clinical employees to self-schedule and undergo PCR testing. Testing remains voluntary and employees will be scheduled on a first-come, first-served basis. All clinical employees are eligible to participate, even if you have participated in prior phases of the testing initiative; however, those who have previously tested positive for COVID-19 are not eligible.

The following dates have been set aside for Phase 3 testing: September 14, 15, and 24. The same process will be used as was used in prior phases: An invite and instructions will be sent by email to those eligible to participate, and employees will be able to self-schedule through MyChart.

If you have any questions, please refer to the COVID staff online resource page or contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Note, for any MyChart questions or technical support needs, please call 860-679-4400.

Thank you to all the employees who have participated already in our very important prevalence testing initiative, and to those who will make time to also do so in the very near future.

Best Regards,
Andy

Andrew Agwunobi, M.D., M.B.A.
Chief Executive Officer, UConn Health
Executive Vice President for Health Affairs

7/20/2020: Phase 2 COVID-19 Employee Testing

Dear Colleagues,

In mid-June, I announced that UConn Health was beginning a phased approach to COVID-19 prevalence testing for clinical workers, to determine the level of infection in employees throughout our clinical areas. Phase 1, which began on June 23 and ended July 13, involved offering a PCR test to a random sampling of our approximately 2,800 clinical employees. 1,200 employees or over 40% of the total clinical employees were randomly chosen to participate, and of those, 445 employees signed up and had successful tests. I am pleased to report that there were zero positive tests reported in the 445 employees tested. My thanks to all employees who participated in Phase 1.

Although Phase 1 provided reassuring results that our COVID-19 prevalence is low, not as many employees volunteered to participate as we had originally hoped. In consultation with our infection control and testing teams, I wanted to inform you that we have decided to undertake a Phase 2 to continue the voluntary testing of our asymptomatic clinical employees. In Phase 2, all clinical employees will be offered a PCR test. Exceptions apply to those already tested in Phase 1 and those who have had a previous positive COVID-19 PCR test.

Phase 2 will run from Wednesday, July 22 through Friday August 7, and instructions will be sent by email to eligible employees. If you are invited to participate, please follow the directions provided to you in the email to sign up for MyChart and pre-schedule your test between Monday – Friday, 7:15 to 11:30 a.m. The dedicated testing location is the Emergency Department’s sampling tent.

If you have any questions, please refer to the Phase 2 FAQ or contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. Note, for any MyChart questions or technical support needs, please call 860-679-4400.

Best Regards,
Andy

Andrew Agwunobi, M.D., M.B.A.
Chief Executive Officer, UConn Health
Executive Vice President for Health Affairs

7/20/2020: Phase 2 COVID-19 Employee Testing FAQ

Q: Why is UConn Health testing employees for COVID-19?
As we return to more regular services at UConn Health, we want to ensure employee and patient safety. Part of this strategy is assessing the prevalence of SARS-CoV2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in asymptomatic employees. Also, our employee testing program aligns with both state reopening guidelines and sound principles for managing the pandemic risk as we continue to ramp up our regular services while at the same time remain vigilant about the recurrence of COVID-19 cases.

Q: What did Phase 1 testing results show?
In Phase 1, our goal was to test approximately 900 of our approximately 2,800 clinical workers (those who work in all areas of the hospital or outpatient care settings, including dental). Of the 1,200 randomly selected clinical employees invited by email to participate, 445 employees voluntarily signed up and were successfully PCR tested. We are pleased to report that there were zero positive tests reported in Phase 1.

Q: Why is COVID-19 employee testing being expanded from Phase 1 to Phase 2?
Although Phase 1 provided reassuring results that our COVID-19 prevalence is low, not as many employees volunteered to participate as we had originally hoped. In consultation with our Infection Control and testing teams, UConn Health decided to continue the voluntary testing of our asymptomatic clinical employees.

Q: What is involved in our Phase 2 COVID-19 employee testing?
In Phase 2, all of our approximately 2,800 clinical employees will now be offered a clinical sample via nasopharyngeal swab for SARS-CoV2 RNA PCR testing if they choose to participate. The dedicated employee testing location is the sampling tent outside of the Emergency Department. All clinical employees are receiving email invitations with instructions about how to proceed. Note, an employee must sign up for MyChart to be able to schedule his or her test.

Q: Who is deemed a ‘clinical’ employee?
Based on guidance received from the State and UConn Health Infection Control, clinical employees from across departments at UConn Health are those who spend greater than 10 minutes within 6 feet of patients; have prolonged/regular contact with blood or body fluids; or work with high risk individuals.

Q: What if I am an employee who was already tested in Phase 1?
Employees who participated in successful PCR testing during Phase 1 are excluded from participating in Phase 2. If you receive an email invitation to participate in Phase 2 testing and you have already successfully completed a PCR test in Phase 1, please do not register for another test.

Can I participate if I have previously tested positive for COVID-19?
No. Employees who have previously tested positive for the virus with a PCR test are excluded from Phase 2 testing. If you receive an email invitation to participate in Phase 2 testing and you have previously tested positive for the virus, please do not respond to the email invitation.

Q: Will testing ever be expanded to all UConn Health employees?
Decisions about future testing will be based on results obtained in Phase 2 testing, the prevalence of the virus in our hospital, other area hospitals and throughout the region and the state, and data and guidance from Infection Control and other public health experts.

Q: What if I test positive?
Should you test positive for the virus, our COVID-19 Call Center will promptly contact you to assess any health care needs and will provide guidance on next steps regarding work activities. The Call Center also will send a secured email notification to Human Resources and your manager. Epic will safeguard the confidentiality of this informationAsymptomatic employees with a positive test will be notified by the COVID-19 Call Center to follow standard policy and quarantine at home for the required 10 days. Such employees will qualify for COVID-19 Sick Leave or given a telecommuting assignment as appropriate.

Q: What if I prefer not to be tested?
Similarly to Phase 1, participation in the Phase 2 sampling is still voluntary, not mandatory. However, participation is strongly encouraged, as it will help our organization determine the prevalence of COVID-19 among our employees. Understanding the prevalence rates both throughout the organization and within specific areas will provide important data to help inform our ongoing safety strategy and protocols.

Q: Will I have to be tested again in the future?
Our current ongoing prevalence assessment for COVID-19 at this time is still a one-time baseline PCR test for asymptomatic clinical employees. Should our testing strategy change or the testing frequency needs to be adjusted, we will communicate updates to the UConn Health community.

Q: What if I have questions or concerns about testing, or if I am still not sure if I am a Phase 2 clinical employee who should be tested?
If you have any employee testing questions, please contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

Q: I am having trouble accessing MyChart, how can I get help?
For MyChart questions and technical support, please call the IT Help Desk at 860-679-4400.

Download FAQ

6/19/2020: Guidance – UConn Health COVID-19 Testing for Employees

Introduction

UConn Health has implemented entry screening protocols and social distancing measures throughout our facilities, provided personal protective equipment (PPE), and put numerous other safety precautions in place to combat the spread of COVID-19. An employee SARS-CoV-2 testing program is another part of this strategy, helping us determine the prevalence of COVID-19 among our employees. Understanding this prevalence rate throughout and within specific areas will be an important tool as we continuously update our overall safety strategy and protocols. This employee testing program aligns with both state re-opening guidelines and sound principles for managing the pandemic risk as we ramp up our outpatient practices.

Guidance

  • Testing of Symptomatic Employees. UConn Health employees who experience symptoms of COVID-19 will continue to be referred to the UConn Health COVID-19 Call Center for assessment by a provider and the determination of whether SARS-CoV-2 testing is indicated.
  • Testing of Asymptomatic Employees. UConn Health will phase-in a program of randomized COVID-19 sampling for asymptomatic employees. Phase 1 of the program will involve randomly choosing UConn Health direct care employees working in both hospital and outpatient clinical environments (including Dental) for sampling, to determine COVID-19 prevalence. A statistically significant number of clinical employees will be chosen to participate in the Phase I sampling, to ensure confidence in the results. Participation in the Phase I sampling is voluntary, not mandatory. However, participation is strongly encouraged, as it will help our organization determine the prevalence of COVID-19 among our employees. Phase II of the program will move forward based upon the results of the Phase I sampling. Based on the prevalence of positive results and other data we obtain in Phase I, we will determine next steps, which may include testing additional employees, providing repeated surveillance testing, or focusing testing on certain areas.
  • Exceptions. UConn Health employees who are required by state law to be tested for COVID-19, such as those who work in nursing homes and assisted living facilities, will not be part of the phased-in program of randomized sampling. Such employees, as well as symptomatic employees, are required to be tested for COVID-19 to continue to perform their duties.
  • Positive Results. An employee who tests positive will be contacted by the UConn Health COVID-19 Call Center. The COVID-19 Call Center will notify Human Resources and the employee’s manager via secured email. The COVID-19 Call Center will also provide guidance and information to the employee on the need for self-monitoring or isolation, based on institutional and CDC guidelines and, where appropriate, will refer the employee to her or his primary care physician for medical care. Employees who test positive are also required to provide information to enable contact tracing to be performed. Accordingly, employees experiencing symptoms who seek testing outside of UConn Health must call the UConn Health COVID-19 Call Center with the results.

Download the Guidance Document

6/19/2020: Employee COVID-19 Testing Program FAQ

Q: Why are we starting a COVID-19 employee testing program?
As we return to more regular services at UConn Health, we want to ensure employee and patient safety. Part of this strategy is assessing the prevalence of the SARS-CoV2, the virus that causes COVID-19, in asymptomatic employees. We are currently only aware of the infection rate among employees who have presented with virus symptoms or had a specific exposure incident. Also, this employee testing program aligns with both state reopening guidelines and sound principles for managing the pandemic risk as we continue to ramp up our outpatient practices and return to providing regular services.

Q: Who is being tested?
We are taking a phased approach to our COVID-19 employee testing. We will begin with a point prevalence sampling of approximately 900 or 33% of our approximately 2,700 clinical workers, including those who work in the hospital or outpatient care settings, including dental. The individuals in the Phase I sample group will be chosen randomly.

Q: Who is included in the group of approximately 2,700 clinical workers from which the randomly selected sample size is chosen?
Based on guidance received from the State and UConn Health Infection Control, those included in the Phase I sampling are employees from across departments at UConn Health who spend greater than 10 minutes within 6 feet of patients; have prolonged/regular contact with blood or body fluids; or work with high risk individuals.

Q: How do employees actually get the test done?
Employees who have been randomly selected to participate in the Phase I testing group are receiving emails with instructions about how to proceed. An employee must sign up for MyChart to be able to schedule his or her test.

Q: Will testing be expanded to all employees?
Based on the prevalence of positive results and other data we obtain in Phase I, we will determine next steps, which may include testing additional employees, providing repeated surveillance testing, or focusing testing on certain areas. 

Q: How will I be tested?
Phase I initial employee screenings for COVID-19 will be conducted by obtaining a clinical sample via nasopharyngeal swab for SARS-CoV2 RNA PCR testing. The dedicated employee testing location is the sampling tent outside of the Emergency Department.

Q: What if I test positive?
Should you test positive for the virus, our COVID-19 Call Center will promptly contact you to assess any health care needs and will provide guidance on next steps regarding work activities. The Call Center also will send a secured email notification to Human Resources and your manager. Epic will safeguard the confidentiality of this information. Asymptomatic employees with a positive test will be notified by the COVID-19 Call Center to follow standard policy and quarantine at home for the required 10 days. Such employees will qualify for COVID-19 Sick Leave or given a telecommuting assignment as appropriate.

Q: What if I prefer not to be tested?
Participation in the Phase I sampling is voluntary, not mandatory. However, participation is strongly encouraged, as it will help our organization determine the prevalence of COVID-19 among our employees. Understanding the prevalence rates both throughout the organization and within specific areas will provide important data to help inform our ongoing safety strategy and protocols.

Q: The communication from Dr. Agwunobi stated that a future phase may include mandatory testing; under what conditions would UConn Health require mandatory employee testing in Phase II?
At this time, we do not anticipate mandatory testing of asymptomatic employees. However, two potential scenarios that could lead to mandatory testing include: (1) an external mandate or recommendation to test health care employees from the State of Connecticut, the state’s Department of Public Health, or another governing body; or (2) ongoing transmission or even an outbreak of the virus within one area of the facility that can’t be mitigated with other interventions. However, both of these scenarios at this point in time seem unlikely. Currently, there is only an executive order by the Governor mandating weekly COVID-19 testing for staff across nursing homes, senior housing, and assisted-living centers. This mandated testing began in June.

Q: Will I have to be tested again in the future?
Our current prevalence assessment for COVID-19 at this time is a one-time baseline PCR test for the random sample size of Phase I asymptomatic employee groups. Should our testing strategy change or the testing frequency needs to be adjusted, we will communicate updates to the UConn Health community.

Q: What if I have questions or concerns about testing, or if I am not sure if I am a Phase I selected participant?
If you have any questions, please contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For MyChart technical support, call the IT Help Desk at 860-679-4400.

Download FAQ

6/17/2020: COVID-19 Employee Testing

As we return to regular services, based on consultation with our infection control and testing teams, I wanted to inform you that UConn Health will take a phased approach to COVID-19 employee testing beginning on June 23. This will involve:

Phase I: Prevalence testing for COVID-19 of approximately 900 (or 33%) of our 2,700 front-line clinical workers using a PCR test. Employees who provide direct patient care in the hospital or outpatient care settings will be randomly selected and invited individually by email to participate in the Phase I COVID-19 testing sample group. Participation in the Phase I sampling is voluntary not mandatory. However, participation is strongly encouraged, as it will help our organization determine the prevalence of COVID-19 among our employees.

Phase II: Based on the prevalence of positive results in Phase I we will determine whether testing of additional employees is warranted, what form that testing should take, and whether it would be voluntary or mandatory. It will also inform us regarding how to structure the Phase II testing, for example, whether to provide widespread repeated surveillance testing to focus testing on certain areas, or to include more employees in the testing sample.

This employee testing program aligns with both state reopening guidelines and sound principles for managing the pandemic risk as we continue to ramp up our outpatient practices and return to providing regular services. We will be closely monitoring our prevalence rate and comparing it to the infection rate within the local community and other area hospitals.

For convenience, we have set up a sampling tent outside of the Emergency Department dedicated to testing our employees. Those identified for the first phase of our employee testing program will be notified soon by email of how to schedule their test via MyChart. An employee must sign up for MyChart to be able to schedule his or her test. Note, you will not be eligible to participate if you’ve had a positive COVID-19 PCR test in the last six weeks.

Initial employee screening will be conducted by obtaining a clinical sample via nasopharyngeal swab for SARS-CoV2 RNA PCR testing by the UConn Health Clinical Laboratory. Should you test positive for the virus, our COVID-19 Call Center will promptly contact you to assess any health care needs, provide guidance on next steps regarding work activities and also will send a secured email notification to Human Resources and your manager. Epic will safeguard the confidentiality of this information.

Asymptomatic employees with a positive test will be notified by the COVID-19 Call Center to follow standard policy and isolate at home for the required 10 days. Such employees will qualify for COVID-19 Sick Leave.

Thank you for your cooperation in the implementation of this COVID-19 prevalence assessment. Understanding the prevalence rates both throughout the organization and within specific areas will provide important data to help inform our ongoing safety strategy and protocols.

If you have any questions, please contact the COVID-19 Call Center at 860-679-3199, Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.

For MyChart technical support, call the IT Help Desk at 860-679-4400.