Procedure for Østfold University College in respect of quarantine and infection tracking in connection with COVID-19
Østfold University College works systematically to prevent and control infection.
According to section 3-1 of the Norwegian Working Environment Act: Requirements regarding systematic health, environment and safety work (the internal control regulations), the employer shall ensure that systematic health, environment and safety work is performed at all levels of the undertaking – including infection prevention and control work.
Reopen Østfold University College and ensure continuity in the event of outbreaks of COVID-19, including effective contact tracing for infection tracking purposes and good routines in connection with an outbreak. At the same time, ensure the gradual, safe return of all students and employees, and maintain the necessary measures to slow down transmission and limit the spread of COVID-19.
This procedure applies to both of Østfold University College’s campuses. The procedure must be adapted to both campuses’ activities, risk factors and size to the extent necessary to ensure compliance with requirements laid down in or pursuant to the health, environment and safety legislation.
The Director of the University College is responsible for planning, implementing and documenting what is being done in respect of infection prevention. The University College’s Health and Safety Officer provides assistance in this work.
General hygiene measures:
- Good cough etiquette and good hand hygiene reduce transmission of all respiratory infections, including the new coronavirus COVID-19.
- Avoid shaking hands and hugging.
- Students and employees must avoid standing or sitting close to one another and must maintain a distance of at least one metre from one another.
- Wash your hands with soap and water after coughing and sneezing, after visits to the toilet, before preparing food, before and after meals, after contact with animals, and otherwise when hands look or feel dirty.
- Alcohol-based disinfectants and hand sanitisers destroy coronaviruses and can be used when there are no hand-washing facilities.
- Avoid touching your face and eyes.
Everyone at Østfold University College must read and abide by the general hygiene measures implemented at the University College. See our webpages: https://www.hiof.no/om/aktuelt/aktuelle-saker/2020/informasjon-om-coronaviruset.html.
Follow the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI)’s guidelines on advice for workplaces:
Follow the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI)’s guidelines on advice for universities and university colleges: https://www.fhi.no/nettpub/coronavirus/rad-og-informasjon-til-andre-sektorer-og-yrkesgrupper/universiteter-hoyskoler-fagskoler-folkehoyskoler/.
Everyone who comes to Østfold University College must take the e-learning course on infection prevention and control before they arrive on campus
Failure to comply with the COVID-19 guidelines may result in expulsion.
Follow the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI)’s guidelines: https://www.fhi.no/nettpub/coronavirus/.
General information about respiratory symptoms and suspected cases of COVID-19:
It is recommended that anyone who develops respiratory symptoms with an unknown cause be tested for COVID-19 and stay at home until they receive the test results and no longer have these symptoms. You must stay at home for at least 24 hours after the symptoms have disappeared.
You must NOT visit Østfold University College if you feel unwell.
Symptoms of COVID-19 can be quite mild and difficult to distinguish from other respiratory infections.
Follow the link for more information:
Suspected respiratory symptoms in other members of your household
If someone in your household has symptoms of a respiratory infection, but has not tested positive for COVID-19, you can come to Østfold University College as normal. However, you should go home if you develop symptoms.
Students and employees who are close contacts or in a household with a person with confirmed COVID-19 must be quarantined (see https://www.fhi.no/nettpub/coronavirus/fakta/avstand-karantene-og-isolering/).
Students and employees who have travelled abroad must comply with the government’s quarantine requirements.
If you become unwell or suspect you may have contracted COVID-19 while on campus
Students and employees who develop symptoms of COVID-19 while they are on campus must immediately stay a safe distance away from others, get tested for COVID-19, and then go home as quickly as possible.
Students and employees must inform the University College about their symptoms (ref. chapter 5 of the Norwegian Act relating to control of communicable diseases) and which areas ought to be disinfected (handles, washbasins, kitchenettes, lift buttons, etc.) and contribute to contact tracing for infection tracking purposes.
Symptoms of a new respiratory infection or other symptoms may be due to COVID-19. Common symptoms of COVID-19 include a high temperature (fever), cough, breathlessness, loss of sense of taste and/or smell, sore throat, and a general feeling of being unwell.
If you suspect you may have COVID-19 while you are on campus, it is essential that you are thorough in reporting everyone you have been in contact with for infection tracking purposes. The procedure is described below.
The infected person contacts the following people:
Students in face-to-face teaching
- Students contact the lecturer or head of studies
- Employees contact their immediate supervisor
People contacted must notify the HiØ Infection Tracking Team. They will contact the municipal public health officer in the respective municipality for assistance. The municipal public health officer determines who is to be included in the infection tracking and who must quarantine.
While you are waiting to be tested for COVID-19 and transport
Testing for COVID-19:
There are special “corona offices” for testing for COVID-19. Call to make an appointment. Contact the infection tracking team for assistance:
- Fredrikstad Municipality: (+47) 69 38 11 08. Opening hours: 8:30 AM – 3 PM on weekdays. Saturdays and Sundays: 10 AM – 4:30 PM.
- Halden Municipality: (+47) 488 85 200. Opening hours: 9 AM – 4 PM on weekdays. Saturdays and Sundays: 1 PM – 4 PM.
While you are waiting for transport:
Wait in the allocated room on campus. Wear a face mask. Face masks are available in the rooms and can be collected from the campus service centres.
- Remmen: Quiet room A1 – 066
- Fredrikstad: Quiet room N - 315
The room is locked once the sick person has left the room and the lecturer or supervisor informs the Infection Tracking Team that the room can be cleaned. The Infection Tracking Team is responsible for informing the cleaning manager.
The Infection Tracking Team assists the sick person while they are waiting for transport.
Transport from campus
- If you have a private car, use this to get home.
- When using a private car for transport: wear a face mask, and sit in the back seat diagonally opposite the driver.
- When using a taxi: Fredrikstad Taxi drives people suspected of having COVID-19 and has special cars for this purpose. The taxi must be booked via the “pasientreiser” system for transport of patients. Contact the Accident & Emergency service in the municipality the person comes from. Accident & Emergency telephone number: 116 117.
- People suspected of having COVID-19 should not use public transport.
Østfold University College has its own Infection Tracking Team, under the Director of Organisation and Service Development, in collaboration with the Health and Safety Officer.
Any infection tracking is clarified in collaboration with the municipal public health officer in the respective municipalities.
Østfold University College uses the relevant class lists to trace contacts for infection tracking purposes. The Buddy Committee has an overview of who is in which buddy group (cohorts). The system is GDPR compliant and ensures your privacy.
The Infection Tracking Team provides assistance when the sick person has to wait for transport in a quiet room and, as applicable, contacts people the sick person has been in contact with for testing for COVID-19.
Teaching rooms and auditoriums:
If someone falls ill with an acute respiratory infection during teaching, the person with symptoms must leave the teaching room and be tested for COVID-19. There is a separate room on campus where the sick person can isolate while waiting for transport. The lecturer informs the infection tracking team. Class lists will be used to trace contacts for infection tracking purposes. The teaching can continue as normal.
The lecturer can inform the other students that one person is being tested for COVID-19 and that until the test results are available, everyone should exercise caution, but do not need to quarantine.
Quarantine and isolation
Arriving in Norway from a red zone
Anyone arriving in Norway from a red zone shall be in quarantine for 10 days.
Quarantine and isolation in connection with suspected infection
Students and employees who have tested positive for COVID-19 or are likely to have contracted COVID-19 must self-isolate:
See the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI)’s website for more information:
If you are tested for COVID-19 while you are in quarantine and this test is negative, you must nevertheless still complete the ten-day quarantine period.
Students and employees who live in a red zone (Sweden) / daily commuters
We follow the Norwegian Institute of Public Health (FHI)’s guidelines.
Anyone who commutes across the border must have documentation proving their affiliation with Østfold University College.
- The municipal public health officer in Halden
- The Norwegian Institute of Public Health – Folkehelseinstituttet.no
- The occupational health service – Stamina Helse
- The Norwegian Labour Inspection Authority