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COVID-19 symptoms or exposure? Find out what to do if you or a close contact have symptoms or think you may have been exposed.

FAQ: Remote Work, Leave, and Time Off

For Faculty and Staff | Updated May 18, 2020

Working remotely

Should I be reporting to work in-person, or should I be working remotely?

In March, the University announced that all River Campus and non-Medical Center non-essential staff should begin working remotely as part of the institution’s response to COVID-19.  As an update, despite some businesses reopening on May 15 as part of Governor Cuomo’s “Phase 1” of Reopening New York in the Finger Lakes Region, the guidance for non-essential staff at the University remains the same: all staff who have been working remotely since March should continue to do so until further notice. The CURT and senior leadership closely monitor government guidance that informs this decision-making, including New York State’s regional phased reopening plan, and are committed to ensuring the safety and well-being of University community members. The status of remote working will be re-evaluated and communicated when the Finger Lakes Region advances to a new phase.

As a reminder, Medical Center staff are considered essential staff and have been expected to report to work, unless otherwise advised by their manager. And essential staff in facilities, dining services, residential life, in some research facilities, and other areas who are responsible for continuing operations at the University may also be working on campus.

What happens to my pay and benefits if I work from, or if I’m unable to work from home and have been directed not to report to work?

While we are continuing to monitor the impact of this crisis, the ultimate length and depth of the economic impact it will have on the University is difficult to predict.

We will formally evaluate the salary continuation policy for employees unable to be reassigned in one month, and at least monthly thereafter. We will work to communicate with you in as timely a manner as possible with our hope and plan being to weather this crisis together.

If you receive paper paychecks, these will be mailed to the address provided in HRMS. You should check that your home or mailing address is correct in HRMS, and consider setting up direct deposit to your bank account.

Should I install specific tools to help me work and attend meetings remotely?

Yes, University IT has prepared a list of helpful tools and tips to help you make the transition to working remotely. They include information for how to install and use VPN service, Duo (two-factor authentication for logging in to HRMS and other services), and collaboration tools such as Zoom for meetings. There are also tips for checking your voicemail from home and how to check your home’s internet speed.

What if I need help getting set up?

Contact your IT support person. If you don’t know who your IT support person is, you can call the University IT Help Desk for assistance. You can also request assistance by contacting:

University Help Desk:
(585) 275-2000

URMC ISD Help Desk:
(585) 275-3200

Leave and time off

I have been diagnosed by a doctor with COVID-19, or I am under quarantine under direction of Employee Health, University Health Services, or the Department of Health. What should I do?

You should not report to work and should closely follow orders from medical professionals. Under quarantine, employees are covered under the COVID addendum to Policy 324: Reassignment/Absence to Prevent Contagion. According to this policy, employees will receive full pay, up to the Center for Disease Control guidelines, which is currently 14 days.

If an employee with COVID-19 remains out longer than 14 days, the employee will be covered under Sick Leave and Short-Term Disability and Family Medical Leave or Worker’s Compensation if the employee was exposed while working. Pay would be in line with those guidelines.

I am immunocompromised and at risk for serious illness from COVID-19. I am nervous about reporting to work in case I get sick. What are my options?

You should consult with your manager about the options to work remotely. An employee in this situation also can request a reasonable accommodation by submitting a request to their Human Resources Business Partner or Liaison. Assistance is available by contacting ASK URHR at (585) 275-8747. The request will be reviewed and pay will be determined by the outcome.

I live with or care for someone who is immunocompromised and at risk for serious illness from COVID-19. I am nervous about reporting to work in case I get and transmit the disease. What are my options?

You should consult with your manager about the options to work remotely.


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