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Covid-19: PCA response and FAQ's

Health and Safety Measures at PCA

Though the pandemic is still with us, we do plan to maintain classes on campus for the duration of the academic year.

Masks are optional, but good hygiene measures such as frequent hand washing and regular airing out of classrooms and shared spaces are required.

You should also get tested as soon as you experience any COVID 19 symptoms.

As updates on French government mandates become available, we will communicate them through email and post them on this dedicated webpage.

Measures against Covid-19

Individual protection/hygiene measures

• Wash your hands carefully and regularly with soap and water and wipe them with disposable paper preferably, in the absence of access to water, use hydro-alcoholic solution.
• Cover your mouth and nose with the crease in your elbow or a disposable handkerchief if you cough or sneeze.
• Blow your nose and spit only in disposable tissues, which you immediately throw in the trash.
• Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.

*these measures will be continued or reassessed as needed for the upcoming semester

Collective hygiene measures

• Regular ventilation of closed rooms every 3 hours: at the end of a class the windows should be opened and can not be closed for the first 5 minutes of the following class
• Hydro-alcoholic solutions and disinfectant wipes available so that each user can clean shared equipment (eg photocopiers, keyboards, etc.)
• Maintenance agents who work on our premises are trained to perform the required cleaning protocol, including the use of special disinfectant of contact surfaces (handles, switches, telephones, etc.) in addition to the rigorous cleaning of the premises, floors and sanitary facilities

Contingency Plans & On-Campus Guidelines

Do I need to wear a mask?

A mask is optional at this time. Additionally, wearing a mask in Paris’ public transportation system, crowded public spaces or when spending time with people who are immunocompromised is recommended.

In the case of rising cases in Paris, requirements may change, so please make sure to follow the news from the Mairie de Paris closely.

How can I prepare myself?

All members of the PCA community are encouraged to plan for possible illness or quarantine by making sure to:

  1. Have emergency contact numbers and doctors’ numbers readily available,
  2. Have two week’s worth of non-perishable food at home,
  3. Have two week’s worth of any prescription medication that you take regularly, do not wait until you have run out to renew your prescription,
  4. Have two week’s worth of basic hygiene products available, such as toilet paper, tissues, menstrual products, contact lens solution, soap, aspirin, etc.
  5. Have a basic pharmacy kit with a thermometer, aspirin or another over-the-counter pain reliever, band-aids, etc.

What if I am in Paris and become ill?

It is very important that you find a general practitioner (“médecin traitant”) as soon as you get to Paris, even if you have no symptoms or illness. You can find information on enrolling in FREE French health insurance as well as a list of English-speaking doctors on your mon.paris portal. If you experience fever, flu-like symptoms, loss of smell or taste or experience difficulty breathing you must call your general practitioner or the emergency number 15 if it is outside business hours. Your doctor will be able to prescribe a laboratory to test you for COVID-19. You must remain in isolation while you wait for the test results and should not under any circumstances come to campus. If you test positive, you must remain in isolation, and your doctor will guide you on how to treat symptoms.

Our attendance policy has been modified to encourage all students experiencing symptoms to stay at home, without fear of penalty for their grades. Depending on the severity of your illness, you can either catch up on missed assignments, request an extension or take a medical leave of absence. As is the case with any serious illness, your health is our utmost priority, and you would discuss options and decide on the best solution in consultation with your department chair.

What to do if someone I am close to has been tested positive for COVID-19?

Anyone you have interacted with for more than 15 minutes without wearing a mask is considered close. If a close person has tested positive, you need to self-quarantine, schedule a test, and wait for negative test results before you can return to campus. This also applies if a member of your household has someone close who has tested positive (e.g. your roommate’s boyfriend): in this case you need to get tested and wear a mask until you get negative results.

We are all responsible for making sure that the spread of the virus stays under control, so please do not take any chances or put the PCA campus at risk by coming if you know you’ve been exposed to someone who could be infected. The attendance policy has been modified so that you will not be penalised academically for taking these precautions.

What happens if a classmate becomes ill when we are both studying on campus?

On the PCA campus we keep a track of who comes to the campus, either by having the person badge to enter campus or by signing in with a name and contact information in the visitors log. We encourage students to keep track of their social encounters off campus as well, especially in situations (dinners, etc.) where you may be in close proximity without a mask for more than 15 minutes.

What happens if a faculty member is ill?

As in any semester we will make our best effort to quickly find a replacement for a missing instructor and to catch up on any missed classes. Make-up classes can sometimes take the form of asynchronous assignments when it is difficult to schedule a face-to-face make-up class.

Can I get tested in France?

To make an appointment for a diagnostic test you can book it online using the same tool that you can use to search and book a general practitioner or specialist appointment:
For quick (15 min) testing near campus, you can go to Pharmacie Anglaise 2 rue de Compiègne 10th arrondissement.

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