COVID-19 Staff FAQs

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs) for ATU staff

Our reopening plan sees a phased return to campus for all from 20th September 2021 - read full Press Release (Issued 1 September 2021).

Please consult the document 'Covid mitigating actions by staff September 2021

The symptoms of COVID-19 (coronavirus) are:

 

If you have any symptoms of COVID-19, even if they are mild:

  • Self-isolate (stay in your room), and                            

  • Get tested, and

  • Wear a medical grade mask or an FFP2 mask if you are close to others                                                                                                           

Do these even if you have completed your first round of COVID-19 vaccination, had a booster, or had a positive PCR test result in the past.

  • Tell your housemates that they may have to restrict their movements  (stay at home) – see FAQ on Close Contacts for full details.

 

How to get tested

Note:  If you have an underlying condition that puts you at higher risk of severe disease, contact your GP as soon as possible.

 

Your housemates may have to restrict your movements (stay at home). 

See the FAQ on close contacts for full details. If your PCR test is negative, your housemates can stop restricting their movements and return to your normal activities. If your PCR test is positive, your housemates will become close contacts and should continue to restrict their movements.

If you wish to access the Student Health Unit located on the Dublin Road campus, you must phone them first on 091 742228. If you do not get through, leave a voicemail, and you will receive a call-back. Please note that the Student Health Unit does not provide a walk-in service.                       

Student Health Providers 

Dublin Road Campus and CCAM Campus: 091 742228
Mayo Campus (Dr Stephen Patten): 094 9021999
Letterfrack Campus (Dr Alexander Michel): 095 43465

If you do not have a GP and need assistance after 5pm or at weekends, you can search for one here or call the GP out of hours service

 

How to self-isolate

Do

  • stay at home, in a room with a window you can open

  • keep away from other people – especially older people or anyone with a long-term medical condition

  • use a different bathroom to others in your household, if possible

  • cover your coughs and sneezes using a tissue – clean your hands properly after

  • ask friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food or supplies – if they stand back from the door, you can speak with them

  • wash your hands properly and often

  • use your own towel – do not share a towel with others

  • clean your room every day with a household cleaner or disinfectant

  • wear a medical or respirator face covering if you have to be in the same room as someone else during self-isolation and for 3 days after you leave self-isolation

Don't

  • do not go outside unless you have your own outdoor space away from other people

  • do not go to work, school, religious services or public areas

  • do not go to the shops or pharmacy for any reason – ask them to deliver or ask someone to go for you

  • do not share things like food, dishes or other household items

  • do not use public transport or taxis

  • do not have any visitors to your home

  • If you test positive for Covid by antigen test or by PCR test, you must self-isolate (stay in your room) for 7 full days and wear an FFP2 or medical grade mask for 10 days.

  • Do this even if you completed your first round of Covid vaccinations, had a booster, or had a positive PCR test in the past.

  • Inform covidofficer@gmit.ie as we have to review each case.

  • Those that test positive by antigen test should regard it as confirmed Covid-19 and register it with the HSE  A confirmatory PCR test is not required. 

  • If you test positive for Covid by antigen test or by PCR test, and you have a vaccine appointment, do not go for your vaccine.  See here for what to do regarding vaccination.   

  • If you test positive for Covid by antigen test or by PCR test, tell your housemates that they may have to restrict their movements (stay at home) – see FAQ on Close Contacts for further information.

 

You can stop isolating after 7 days if:

  • You are feeling well on day 6 and day 7 of your self-isolation

  • You do not have a fever (38oC or above) on day 6 and day 7 of your self-isolation (as long as your temperature has not been lowered by taking any form of paracetamol or ibuprofen).

  • Your symptoms are mostly gone – it is okay to stop isolating even if you have a mild cough or changes to your sense of smell – these can last for weeks after the infection has gone

 

If you stop self-isolation at day 7, continue to wear your FFP2 or medical grade mask; avoid contact with anyone at higher risk of severe illness from Covid-19; limit close contact with people outside your household.

If symptoms develop after exiting self-isolation, the symptomatic individual should self-isolate again and re-test.

If you stop isolating at day 7, then you also need to take an antigen test on days 8, 9 and 10 if you are returning to college (or going into any crowded space).

Email covidofficer@gmit.ie, and we can supply antigen tests for this purpose.

 

You can return to work/study if these 3 conditions apply to you:

  1. You do not live with anyone who is unwell and may have COVID-19.

  2. Your period of self-isolation is over.

  3. You do not have a fever (38oC or above) (as long as your temperature has not been lowered by taking any form of paracetamol or ibuprofen).
     

NOTE: If you stop isolating at day 7, then you also need to take an antigen test on days 8, 9 and 10 if you are returning to college (or going into any crowded space).

Email covidofficer@gmit.ie, and we can supply antigen tests for this purpose.

You must email the Covid Officer (covidofficer@gmit.ie) to verify that the above 3 criteria attach to you, and you will then be authorized to return to campus.

In general, when you stop isolating, take extra care to follow the public health advice to protect yourself and others from COVID-19.

 

In general, during isolation:

Ensure that you look after yourself and follow medical advice on treating symptoms.

Take your temperature daily, as you will have to know that you are fever-free as one of the criteria for being allowed back to campus.

If you do not have a thermometer or need any other assistance during your period of self-isolation, contact covidofficer@gmit.ie.

 

How to self-isolate

Do

  • stay at home, in a room with a window you can open

  • keep away from other people – especially older people or anyone with a long-term medical condition

  • use a different bathroom to others in your household, if possible

  • cover your coughs and sneezes using a tissue – clean your hands properly after

  • ask friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food or supplies – if they stand back from the door, you can speak with them

  • wash your hands properly and often

  • use your own towel – do not share a towel with others

  • clean your room every day with a household cleaner or disinfectant

  • wear a medical or respirator face covering if you have to be in the same room as someone else during self-isolation and for 3 days after you leave self-isolation

Don't

  • do not go outside unless you have your own outdoor space away from other people

  • do not go to work, school, religious services or public areas

  • do not go to the shops or pharmacy for any reason – ask them to deliver or ask someone to go for you

  • do not share things like food, dishes or other household items

  • do not use public transport or taxis

  • do not have any visitors to your home

If you live with someone who has symptoms of COVID-19, you have to restrict your movements. (stay at home) – see details below.

If their test is negative, you can stop restricting movements.      

Note you do not have to restrict your movements if:  you have been boosted more than 7 days before the close contact, or if you had your first round of Covid vaccinations and had a positive Covid antigen or PCR test in the past 3 months or if you have recovered from Covid following a positive PCR or antigen test since December 2021 (regardless of vaccination status).    

How to restrict your movements

Avoid social situations and contact with other people as much as you can. Stay at home or in your accommodation as much as possible.

You can still go outside to exercise by yourself as long as you keep 2 metres away from other people.

Don't

  • do not go to work, unless you work on your own and can completely avoid other people

  • do not go to a vaccination appointment – reply to your text with the word 'New' or phone 1800 700 700 to reschedule

  • do not go to school or college

  • do not use public transport

  • do not have visitors at your home

  • do not visit others, even if you usually care for them

  • do not go to the shops or pharmacy - shop online or ask family or friends to help

  • do not drop off or collect your children from school - if you have to go, avoid other people and stay in your car

  • do not go to gatherings such as weddings or funerals

  • do not meet face-to-face with people at high-risk from COVID-19

You are a close contact if you and someone who has had a positive Covid test have been within 2 metres of each other for more than 15 minutes in total in 1 day. 

People who are identified as close contacts of a Covid-positive person must:

  • Wear an FFP2 mask or a medical grade mask                                                     

  • Complete antigen tests, and

  • May have to restrict their movements, see below. 

Follow the advice below that matches your situation.  A summary is given below, full details on subsequent pages.

I got my first round of COVID-19 vaccination but no booster
OR
I got my booster less than 7 days before the close contact text
OR
I have not had my first round of COVID-19 vaccination
OR
I got my first round of Covid vaccination and tested Covid positive more than 3 months ago.

You must:

  • Restrict your movements (stay at home) for 7 days

  • Complete 3 antigen tests over the 7 days

  • Wear a medical or respirator face mask when you are near other people for 10 days since last contact with the positive person.

If any of your antigen tests are positive, you need to self-isolate (stay in your room) for 7 full days, and take extra care to avoid spreading the virus for 3 days after this.

Also, you should  report your positive antigen test result online and list your close contacts.  You do not need to do another antigen test. Do not book a PCR test. See the FAQ on what to do if you test positive for Covid.

If your antigen tests are negative, you must still complete the 7 days period of restriction of movements.  You should report negative antigen results online

 

I got my booster more than 7 days before the close contact text
OR
 
If you had your first round of Covid vaccinations and had a positive Covid antigen or PCR test in the past 3 months
OR
If you have recovered from Covid following a positive PCR or antigen test since December 2021 (regardless of vaccination status)

You must:

  • Complete 3 antigen tests over 7 days (however, if you tested positive for Covid by antigen or PCR test since December 1st, 2021, you do not need to get tested).

  • Wear a medical or respirator face mask when you are near other people for 10 days since last contact with the positive person.

  • There is no need to restrict your movements.     

If any of your antigen tests are positive, you need to self-isolate (stay in your room) for 7 full days, and take extra care to avoid spreading the virus for 3 days after this. 

Also you should  report your positive antigen test result online and list your close contact.  You do not need to do another antigen test. 

Do not book a PCR test. 

See the FAQ on what to do if you test positive for Covid.       

You should report negative antigen results online                    

 

I am a close contact and I have developed symptoms of Covid       

 

                                

If any of the 3 antigen tests are positive, see the FAQ on testing positive.  Also, you need to report your positive antigen test result online and list your close contacts. You do not need to do any more antigen tests.

Do not book a PCR test. If you get 3 negative (not detected) antigen test results, continue to self-isolate until you have not had symptoms for 48 hours.

You should also report your negative antigen result online.                               

 

What does close contact mean?

You are a close contact if you and someone who has had a positive PCR test have been within 2 metres of each other for more than 15 minutes in total in 1 day.

When someone tests positive for COVID-19, their close contacts include people they were in close contact with in the:

  • 48-hour period before they developed symptoms

  • 24-hour period before their test, if they did not have symptoms.

It does not include people they saw briefly and did not touch.  For example, talking to someone for a few minutes more than 2 metres apart.

 

See below for the required actions associated with various situations:

Scenario 1

I got my first round of COVID-19 vaccination but no booster OR

I got my booster less than 7 days before the close contact text OR

I have not had my first round of COVID-19 vaccination OR

I got my first round of Covid vaccination and tested Covid positive more than 3 months

ago.

Testing

You need to do 3 antigen tests over 7 days.

Do the:

  • first test as soon as you can get an antigen test

  • second test 3 days after your first test

  • third test on the 7th day

Watch a video on how to do an antigen test

If any of your antigen tests are positive, you need to report your positive antigen test result and list your close contacts. You do not need to do any more antigen tests. Do not book a PCR test.

You should also report negative antigen results online. This helps us learn more about antigen testing.

A negative antigen test does not mean that you do not have COVID-19.

If you have an invalid test result, do another antigen test.

Book antigen tests

Restricted movements

You need to restrict your movements (stay at home) for 7 days.

Do this from the date you:

  • last had contact with the person who tested positive, if you know this, or

  • were notified by the HSE that you are a close contact

 

Face mask

Wear a medical or respirator face mask when you are around other people.

Do this for 10 days starting from when you:

  • last had contact with the person who tested positive, or

  • were told you were a close contact by the HSE

Read about types of face masks and when to wear them

 

Scenario 2

I got my booster more than 7 days before the close contact text, OR

If you had your first round of Covid vaccinations and had a positive Covid antigen or PCR test in the past 3 months, OR

If you have recovered from Covid following a positive PCR or antigen test since December 2021 (regardless of vaccination status)

Testing

You need to do 3 antigen tests over 7 days (however if you tested positive for Covid by antigen or PCR test since December 1st, 2021, you do not need to get tested).

Do the:

  • first test as soon as you can get an antigen test

  • second test 3 days after your first test

  • third test on the 7th day

Watch a video on how to do an antigen test

If any of your antigen tests are positive, you need to self-isolate (stay in your room) for 7 full days, and take extra care to avoid spreading the virus for 3 days after this.  You should report your positive antigen test result online and list your close contacts. You do not need to do another antigen test. Do not book a PCR test.

You should also report negative antigen results online. This helps us learn more about antigen testing.

A negative antigen test does not mean that you do not have COVID-19.

If you have an invalid test result, do another antigen test.

Book antigen tests

Restricted movements

You do not need to restrict your movements.

Face mask

Wear a medical or respirator face mask if you have to be around other people.

Do this for 10 days starting from when you:

  • last had contact with the person who tested positive, or
  • were told you were a close contact by the HSE

Read about types of face masks and when to wear them

 

I know I am a close contact but I have not been contacted by the HSE yet

If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you need to:

If you do not have symptoms, restrict your movements (stay at home). You will get a text message with a link to a website where you can provide your details. When you have done that, you will get a text message with information about your tests.

 

What do ‘booster dose’ and ‘first round of COVID-19 vaccination’ mean?

Booster dose

A ‘booster dose’ is the extra dose of COVID-19 vaccine used to give better protection to people who have already had their first round of COVID-19 vaccination.

First round of COVID-19 vaccination

When we say ‘first round of COVID-19 vaccination’ we mean your dose 1 and dose 2 if you got AstraZeneca, Moderna or Pfizer. Or your single dose if you got the Janssen vaccine.

If you have a weak immune system, you should have been offered an ‘additional dose’ to give you better protection. This is because your immune system may not respond as well to vaccination. You will still need a booster dose after this additional dose.

How to restrict your movements

Avoid social situations and contact with other people as much as you can. Stay at home or in your accommodation as much as possible.

You can still go outside to exercise by yourself as long as you keep 2 metres away from other people.

Don't

  • do not go to work, unless you work on your own and can completely avoid other people

  • do not go to a vaccination appointment – reply to your text with the word 'New' or phone 1800 700 700 to reschedule

  • do not go to school or college

  • do not use public transport

  • do not have visitors at your home

  • do not visit others, even if you usually care for them

  • do not go to the shops or pharmacy - shop online or ask family or friends to help

  • do not drop off or collect your children from school - if you have to go, avoid other people and stay in your car

  • do not go to gatherings such as weddings or funerals

  • do not meet face-to-face with people at high-risk from COVID-19

 

How to self-isolate

Do

  • stay at home, in a room with a window you can open

  • keep away from other people – especially older people or anyone with a long-term medical condition

  • use a different bathroom to others in your household, if possible

  • cover your coughs and sneezes using a tissue – clean your hands properly after

  • ask friends, family or delivery drivers to drop off food or supplies – if they stand back from the door, you can speak with them

  • wash your hands properly and often

  • use your own towel – do not share a towel with others

  • clean your room every day with a household cleaner or disinfectant

  • wear a medical or respirator face covering if you have to be in the same room as someone else during self-isolation and for 3 days after you leave self-isolation

Don't

  • do not go outside unless you have your own outdoor space away from other people

  • do not go to work, school, religious services or public areas

  • do not go to the shops or pharmacy for any reason – ask them to deliver or ask someone to go for you

  • do not share things like food, dishes or other household items

  • do not use public transport or taxis

  • do not have any visitors to your home

 

Please click here for advice on what to do if your child has Covid symptoms or is a close contact.

Visitors are welcome and should complete the daily health check form. This form is available here: Daily Health Check Form

Please refer to the 'GMIT Face Covering Policy.'

If you develop COVID symptoms at college, contact your lecturer or Head of Department and the GMIT COVID Officer (covidofficer@gmit.ie), then return home to isolate. If you need to wait in GMIT before returning home, isolation rooms are available.

Campus Location   Room
Dublin Rd., Galway Room 153   
CCAM Room 128
Mayo  Room B004  
Letterfrack Meeting Room 1

Please see here for a FAQ document regarding student placement during COVID-19.

Please see here for ATU Public Health Measures for Duration of COVID-19 Pandemic.

Human Resources have developed procedures for staff availing of COVID-19 sick leave or self-isolation in accordance with the national protocols.

The Department of Public Expenditure and Reform have provided Guidance on working arrangements during COVID-19 for the Civil and Public Service.

All ATUdata protection policies and procedures are on the Data Protection SharePoint site and must be followed regardless of whether working remotely or on campus. Read this guidance from the Data Protection Commission on how to protect personal data when working remotely.

Your office PC will need to be switched on, but not logged in, in order for you to get remote access.

Please see more information on how to access your work PC remotely here.

Read the GMIT COVID-19 Response Plan (PDF, 940KB)