VIU Communicable Diseases Plan

The VIU Communicable Disease Plan plan includes general measures to reduce the risk of communicable disease at VIU and additional measures for when there is an elevated risk of communicable disease.

  2021 VIU Communicable Diseases Plan

VIU requires that all VIU employees and students continue to follow the VIU Communicable Diseases Plan in our day to day learning and work activities. This plan applies to all infectious diseases, including COVID-19.

On April 25, 2022 the BCCDC updated the BCCDC Public Health Guidance for PSIs 

 

  • COVID-19 is now managed like other vaccine-preventable respiratory illnesses. This means that if you develop symptoms, please stay home until you are well enough to participate in usual activities or call 8-1-1 to determine if you should seek additional medical attention or treatment when you are unwell.
  • Stay Home When Sick: Ensure students, faculty and staff are aware they should stay at home until well enough to resume regular activities. See details on BCCDC website for more information on how to manage your illness.
  • Hand Hygiene: Enable regular opportunities for hand hygiene, including placing hand sanitizer stations at the entrances/exits to public indoor spaces, VIU Fleet/buses, especially in eating establishments and common areas.
  • Cough and Sneeze Etiquette:
    • Cover your mouth and nose with a disposable tissue or the crease of your elbow when you sneeze or cough rather than sneezing or coughing into your hands
    • Do not share food, drinks, utensils, etc.
    • Avoid unnecessary contact with others
    • Consider physical distancing
    • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hand
  • Face Coverings: Public health orders do not require face coverings in public spaces, including in post-secondary classrooms, VIU Fleet vehicles/buses, student housing facilities, or work spaces. The use of face coverings is a personal choice.
  • Ventilation: VIU will continue to maintain good indoor air quality for all building occupants. This includes supplying outdoor air to replenish indoor air, to help to remove and/or dilute air contaminants that can naturally accumulate in indoor settings.
    • If travelling by bus, open the windows when the weather permits.
  • Cleaning/Disinfecting: VIU is committed to maintaining a clean environment through routine cleaning practices. 
  • Additional Measures: While the majority of measures implemented at VIU to manage COVID-19 transmission during the pandemic are no longer required in most workplaces, it's possible that some of the same or similar measures may be required in the future to manage communicable disease transmission in our work/learning places from time to time.

    Please note that the following protocols and resources are provided for reference only, and are not required to be maintained or implemented unless VIU is advised by Public Health. Guidance around risk levels and appropriate protocols will be provided by regional public health officials and the provincial health officer.

    • Physical Distancing
    • Barriers
    • Masks
    • Enhanced cleaning and disinfecting

Potluck parties are a very popular way to celebrate at VIU. People like potluck parties because they reduce the burden of cooking and food preparation for everyone. However, before you share your favourite dishes, take a little time to learn and practice basic food safety. Different foods need to be handled and cooked differently, and it is important for you to equip yourself with the latest recommendations.

Be Clean

  • Place hand sanitizer at the beginning of the potluck line and throughout the room that you are eating in
  • Wash your hands regularly
  • Keep food preparation surfaces and equipment clean
    • keep disinfecting wipes close by
    • designate someone to clean utensil handles throughout the party
  • Separate raw foods from cooked or ready-to-eat foods

 Control Food Temperatures

  • cook foods to the minimum safe internal temperature
    • use a food thermometer to make sure to reach correct temperatures
  • Cool foods quickly – refrigerate hot foods within 2 hours
  • Store hot foods hot  (60°C or higher)
  • Store cold foods cold (4°C or lower)
  • Transport hot foods or cold foods in a cooler or insulated container that can maintain the correct temperatures
  • Throw away any hazardous food left at room temperature (danger zone 4°C – 60°C) for longer than 2 hours

 Avoid Contamination

  • Provide utensils (spoons, forks, tongs, etc) for each food item so people do not touch the food with bare hands
  • Cover food items until ready to serve
  • Provide spoons for dips to avoid double dipping or cut food items into small pieces that can only be dipped once