COVID-19 cases linked to members of Ciências: how to act

Case management and COVID-19 tests in Ciências ULisboa

Rapid and effective contact tracing (identification, risk assessment and implementation of measures) is a key element in the early detection of cases and limitation of the spread of COVID-19. Therefore, it is important that the information provided by the members of the Ciências ULisboa community to the Faculty's services, through the e-mail covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt, is adequate so that the procedures adopted, in articulation with the Public Health Unit (USP), are fast and effective. The Faculty's services directly monitor the evolution of the health situation of confirmed cases and high risk contacts from members of the community, so any changes associated with these cases should be communicated as soon as possible to the e-mail covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt.

 

Definition of confirmed case, suspect case, high-risk contact, low-risk contact and symptoms of COVID-19

Signs and symptoms associated with COVID-19: signs and symptoms of COVID-19 vary in severity from absence of symptoms (being asymptomatic) to fever (temperature ≥ 38.0ºC), cough, sore throat, muscle fatigue and severe acute respiratory syndrome. It was also verified anosmia (loss of sense of smell) and in some cases the loss of taste, as symptom of COVID-19.

In accordance with Standard 015/2020 of 24/07/2020 of the Directorate General of Health, and considering the type of activities of the Faculty:

Confirmed case: A person with confirmed positive laboratory test for infection by SARS-CoV-2, regardless of the signs and symptoms presented.

Suspect case: A person who develops acute respiratory symptoms with a cough or fever (temperature ≥ 38.0ºC) or dyspnea / difficulty breathing or a person who develops symptoms associated with COVID-19 and has been in contact with a confirmed case.

High-risk contact: A person who has been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 without a mask (including during meals), at a distance of less than 2 meters and simultaneously for 15 minutes or more.

Low-risk contact: A person who has been in contact with a confirmed case of COVID-19 having both worn a mask, albeit indoors and even for more than 15 minutes.

 

Confirmed cases and high-risk contacts

For effective management of information by the Faculty, only confirmed cases and high-risk contacts with confirmed cases should send, as soon as possible, a message to covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt with the following information:

  1. Full name, category, employee/student number, institutional e-mail, mobile phone number, National Health Service user number and current residence address;
  2. Last day you were at the Faculty;
  3. Regarding the 48 hours prior to the last day you were at the Faculty, the name and contact details of the people (Ciências ULisboa members) with whom you were without a mask (including meals), at a distance of less than 2 meters and for 15 minutes or more for the services to assess the risk and make the necessary contacts, ensuring the protection of data from the source of potential contagion.

High-risk contacts should contact the SNS24 line (808 24 24 24) and follow the received instructions. Home confinement or immediate prophylactic isolation is determined by health authorities.

The Faculty's services directly send USP the personal data that has been requested from members of the Faculty considered confirmed cases or high-risk contacts.

The whole community and in particular the students are alerted to the fact that all institutional contacts for the purposes foreseen in this document are made through their institutional Ciências ULisboa e-mail addresses, so they should pay special attention to the operability of these mail addresses, in particular by regularly consulting this e-mail and by avoiding that their e-mail boxes are full.

The information collected will be processed solely for the purpose of ensuring the follow-up of confirmed cases and high risk contacts, the information to USP and the processing and dissemination of anonymised statistical data. The data collected are confidential, accessible only to the members of the Security, Health and Sustainability Office and to the management bodies of the Faculty of Sciences of the University of Lisbon. The data is destroyed as soon as the incident is deemed closed.

 

Suspect cases and low-risk contacts: procedures to follow

Suspect cases should contact the SNS24 line (808 24 24 24) and follow the received instructions. They will only inform the Faculty, via e-mail covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt, if they need to regularise their attendance because they have been given prophylactic isolation.

Low-risk contacts, as well as suspect cases, must maintain passive surveillance for 14 days since the date of the last exposure:

  1. Monitor daily symptoms compatible with COVID-19;
  2. Measure and record body temperature twice a day;
  3. Implement strictly the prevention measures available here, including distance, hand hygiene, respiratory tag and the permanent use of a well placed mask, covering the nose and chin;
  4. Not to go to places with crowds of people, maintaining the face-to-face activity in Ciências ULisboa and ensuring compliance with the previous paragraph;
  5. If symptoms compatible with COVID-19 appear, contact SNS24;
  6. If prophylactic isolation is determined, please inform the Faculty's services by e-mail covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt.

Both suspect cases and low-risk contacts can self-propose for a diagnostic test for SARS-CoV-2 infection (see information below in ULisboa test programme).

For other types of contacts, which are indirect links between cases, there is no need to adopt additional measures to the general prevention measures available here.

 

Regularisation of attendance

For the purpose of regularisation of attendance, the decision of prophylactic isolation or confinement is always the responsibility of the health authorities who send the respective declaration to the worker/student who, in turn, will forward it to covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt.

The return to the face-to-face activity must take place on the working day following the last day of the period indicated in the declaration, no discharge document being required.

 

ULisboa test programme

The University of Lisbon, through its Rectory, has implemented a 2nd phase of diagnostic tests for SARS-CoV-2 infection, which covers regular testing of its population. In addition, a testing service for suspect cases is always under way.

The tests are coordinated by ULisboa Medical Centre services. Members of Ciências ULisboa interested in performing diagnostic tests should fill in the form available here by 25 October (new deadline). Subject to test availability and the number of people interested, the Faculty Board will define priority criteria and will send the data on the form to the Medical Centre, which will directly schedule the test with those interested.

For suspected cases or contacts with confirmed cases, a testing service is also under way. These cases can propose themselves for a diagnostic test of infection by SARS-CoV-2, by sending to the e-mail covid19@ciencias.ulisboa.pt the indication of the case and type of connection, as well as full name, category, employee/student number, institutional e-mail, mobile phone number and National Health Service user number. The test schedule is only possible after the sending of all the indicated elements.

The costs of the tests proposed by the Faculty, whether in the case of the testing programme or in the case of suspect cases and high or low risk contacts, are paid by the Faculty.

 

Emergency number in Ciências ULisboa and isolation room

Any member of Ciências ULisboa, who is in the Faculty, in case of an emergency, or if they have symptoms of COVID-19, should contact the Ciências emergency number (internal extension 20000 or direct number 217 500 600). In this case, you will be directed by the emergency teams (or security team members) to the isolation area (room 8.1.02). Access to the isolation room must be made directly from outside the C8 building. When moving, the places with the greatest crowding of people/workers on the premises should be avoided.

 

The Faculty Board
(Announcement - 15/10/2020)