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Latest Updates and Archives

Listing of current and past updated related to research at UC San Diego during the pandemic.

2021

(3/25/21) (updated 4/21/21)

Increasing access to labs, offices and studios for academic and research work

As part of UC San Diego’s plan to incrementally repopulate the campus, we are increasing access for faculty and PIs to their individual labs, offices and studios for academic and research work. Beginning April 1, 2021, those with approved Research Ramp-up plans can increase on-site personnel to 50 percent.

All personnel working on-site must continue to follow CDC and campus guidelines including social distancing, use of face coverings, daily screenings and regular hand washing and sanitization. Fully vaccinated individuals (two weeks after second dose), no longer need to test weekly.

Density limitations based on square feet or people per bay/aisle will no longer be required. Instead, 50% of total personnel (including those members of your group who may have been/still are working remotely) may work on-site at any one time, regardless of which phase they have been assigned to in your Research Ramp-up plan.

Faculty and PIs should:

Read full details of this update.

 

(3/16/21)

Increasing access to labs, offices and studios for academic and research work

As part of UC San Diego’s plan to incrementally repopulate the campus, we are increasing access for faculty and PIs to their individual labs, offices and studios for academic and research work within the county’s current 25% percent occupancy limit. 

All personnel working on-site must continue to follow CDC and campus guidelines, regardless of vaccination status, regarding social distancing, use of face coverings, daily screenings, weekly testing, and regular hand washing and sanitization. Density limitations based on square feet or people per bay/aisle will no longer be required. Instead, 25% of total personnel (including those members of your group who may have been/still are working remotely) may work on-site at any one time.

Faculty and PIs should:

  • Update your existing Research Ramp-up plan if you need to add personnel. Instructions can be found here. Please note that staff successfully working remotely should continue to do so until at least May 31.
  • Submit a new Research Ramp-up plan if you haven’t submitted one already AND you have other team members (grad students, postdocs, research staff) who need approval for on-site access with you. Instructions can be found here
  • Submit a Work Health Management Form if you are returning to individual on-site work in your private office (link here)

Read full details of this update here (PDF).

UC San Diego is moving to a weekly testing requirement for all academics and staff who work on-site at any physical UC San Diego location. Required testing is offered through UC San Diego Health at no cost to employees. Read more about employee requirements here.

Students who are on campus are also required to test weekly. Read more about student requirements here.

 

(1/28/2021)

San Diego County in “purple” tier

California Governor Gavin Newsom recently lifted the statewide “stay at home” order; however, San Diego County remains in the most restrictive “purple” tier. We will operate on a “hold in place” model, where research operations will continue as they currently are for the time being. Anyone conducting on-site research in any capacity must remember: 

  • Research is essential to the university’s mission
    • Those who can work at home should continue do so
    • Sensitivity should be shown to those concerned about on-site activity
  • No new on-site research ramp-up plans will be approved while we “hold in place.” 
  • New researchers can be added to plans only as “trade” for existing personnel, so that total on-site numbers do not change and does not affect campus density.
  • Students who wish to continue in approved on-site research activity that advances their education (i.e., master’s theses, dissertations, 199, training rotations) may do so.  No student should be pressured.

Safety requirements continue: comply with daily screening, testing, health safety and quarantine requirements, and utilize the CA NOTIFY appYou can find more information in the Chancellor’s announcement issued on 1/27/20.

 

(1/21/2021)

Vaccine Prioritization

On January 15, the Chancellor issued a memo regarding the prioritization of COVID-19 vaccines. Per California Department of Public Health guidelines, we are currently in Phase 1A (priority: frontline healthcare workers). For further information, please read the Chancellor’s memo, visit the state COVID-19 website and read our FAQs.

2020

(12/18/20)

Due to the Winter Holiday and campus closure, the Research Ramp Up staff will be off-line from December 23rd through January 4th. Changes to Research Ramp Up plans will not be possible during this time. Only approved personnel on existing plans are permitted access to UC San Diego research facilities during this period. We thank you for all you have done to keep everyone safe, and wish everyone a restful and rejuvenating Winter Holiday!

 

(12/8/2020)

New state guidelines regarding "regional stay at home" orders

Due to new state guidelines regarding “regional stay-at-home” orders and consistent with other UC campuses, we will operate on a “hold in place” model, where research operations will continue as they currently are for the time being. Anyone conducting on-site research in any capacity must remember: 

  • Research is essential to the university’s mission
    • Those who can work at home should continue do so
    • Sensitivity should be shown to those concerned about on-site activity
  • No new on-site research ramp-up plans will be approved while we “hold in place.” 
  • New researchers can be added to plans only as “trade” for existing personnel, so that total on-site numbers do not change and does not affect campus density.
  • Students who wish to continue in approved on-site research activity that advances their education (i.e., master’s theses, dissertations, 199, training rotations) may do so.  No student should be pressured.

Safety requirements continue: comply with daily screening, testing, health safety and quarantine requirements, and utilize the CA NOTIFY app.

 

(11/24/2020)

Reminders Regarding Pandemic Safety In Research Facilities

As you are aware, San Diego County is now in the “purple” tier because transmission is widespread. Read our recent announcement about how this may affect research activity here.

 

(11/6/2020)

Guidance for rotational training and on-site research coursework

Rotational Training and On-Site Research Coursework: As Fall Quarter begins, students will be joining research labs and facilities for training and coursework. Students training in the same lab for more than 4 weeks need to be identified and added to that lab’s Ramp Up Plan. Departments and Programs must confirm that all research facilities where students are training – even for shorter, micro-rotations – have a Research Ramp Up plan which includes either a Training Risk Mitigation Plan or an Alternative Risk Mitigation Plan that addresses training. More information is available in the Rotational Training and On-Site Research Coursework PDF.

 

(11/06/2020)

Personnel flexibilities

We are very pleased by UC San Diego’s very successful Orange Phase research ramp up, and appreciate the hard work that has made this possible. In order to reduce the opportunity for community spread of COVID-19, the Research Continuity Task Force identified a personnel density of 25% of normal operations as appropriate. PIs working on initial ramp up plans may include personnel with Red or Orange phase approval; others may add personnel to Red or Orange phase approval lists only in limited circumstances. Visit our Procedures page to learn more about how this may impact your research.

We are able to allow additional flexibility within that 25% cap, and have adjusted Orange Phase guidance so that:

  • Minimum physical distance between personnel remains 6 feet
  • Face coverings and plan-approved PPE required at all times, except when working alone in an office with the door closed
  • In wet labs, up to 2 persons can work simultaneously per bay, aisle, or bench (with a minimum 6 foot distance between personnel)
  • In dry labs, offices and other research settings, 1 person per 150 square feet (with a minimum 6 foot distance between personnel).
    Read VC of Research Sandy Brown's email about new orange phase guidance here.

In order to prepare for a possible future expansion of on-site activity beyond the current level of approximately 25% (Orange Phase), we encourage PIs to begin planning now for activity at approximately 50% and approximately 75% capacity.

Some PIs may be able to change scheduling of personnel approved for Orange Phase activity to achieve 50% or 75% activity; others may need to add personnel for Yellow Phase (50%) or Green Phase (75%) approval. PIs should not create new Research Ramp Up plans, but should amend existing plans by adding personnel with Yellow or Green phase approval if needed. These additions willrequire approval from department chairs and deans (or equivalent). 

It is still not possible to add personnel to Orange or Red Phase approval lists except in limited circumstances as described at https://blink.ucsd.edu/research/covid-19/covid-procedures.html.

To add personnel with Yellow or Green Phase approval to existing plans, please email researchrampup@ucsd.edu to request that your plan be returned to you or edits.