Public Health/Workplace Expectations and Guidelines

Employees are required to conduct symptom monitoring and check their temperature every day before reporting to work. Symptom monitoring currently includes the following:

  • Fever or chills (repeated shaking with chills)
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • GI symptoms (nausea, vomiting and/or diarrhea)

headache, fever, chills, shortness of breath, muscle pain, new loss of taste of smell, congestion or runny nose, cough, GI symptoms, sore throat, fatigue

Anyone experiencing a temperature of 100.4 degrees (F) or higher or who has any of the above symptoms must stay home and NOT report to work. Employees should immediately contact their health care providers and then notify their supervisors of the needed absence. Supervisors of faculty and staff employees should notify Human Resources at 901.678.3573 between the hours of 8:00 a.m. and 4:30 p.m. or at hrservicecenter@memphis.edu outside regular working hours for further instructions. For student employees, supervisors should contact the Student Health Center at 901.443.1397 or 901.443.6438. Upon notification to the University, self-reporting employees will receive further information about quarantine and clearances required for return to work.



Every person on campus is strongly encouraged to wear face masks/coverings (disposable or reusable cloth masks) indoors and in places where maintaining appropriate social distancing is not possible (common workspaces, public spaces, hallways, stairwells, elevators, meeting rooms, classrooms, breakrooms, restrooms, etc.). Masks remain one of the least onerous and most effective ways to protect one’s own health and the health and safety of those around in any indoor setting where appropriate social distancing is not maintained.

Cloth face mask/covering must only be worn for one day at a time and must be properly laundered before use again. Disposable masks may only be worn for one day and then must be placed in the trash. For more information about wearing, making and maintenance of cloth face coverings, visit the CDC website

Maintaining space of at least six feet (about two arms’ length) between individuals is one of the best tools to avoid being exposed to the COVID-19 virus, and it is required of everyone while on University premises, including outdoor campus spaces.

Maintaining space of at least six feet (about two arms’ length) between individuals is one of the best tools to avoid being exposed to the COVID-19 virus, and it is required of everyone while on University premises, including outdoor campus spaces. According to CDC research, SARS-CoV-2 infection is transmitted predominately by inhalation of respiratory droplets generated when people cough, sneeze, sing, talk, or breathe. CDC assesses the risk of transmission through surfaces as low.

The following are some general guidelines related to social/physical distancing.

6 ft apart (illustration of two people with arrow and 6 ft apart between them)

Meetings: In-person meetings are permitted but masks and social distancing are strongly recommended.

Elevators: Employees should use the stairs whenever possible given that elevator capacities may be challenging due to their size. No more than one person may enter an elevator unless it is larger than six feet. For elevators larger than six feet, multiple persons may ride at the same time, as long as proper social/physical distancing guidelines are maintained. Riders should anticipate having to wait, and whenever possible, should allow those with critical and accessibility needs priority use of the elevators. While using the elevator, face masks/covering must be used and touching the elevator buttons with exposed hands/fingers should be avoided whenever possible. Upon departing the elevator, hands should be washed with soap and water or by using an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with greater than 60% ethanol or 70% isopropyl.

Restrooms: Restroom occupancy should be limited based on size to ensure at least six feet of distance between individuals. Hands must be thoroughly washed before leaving the restroom to reduce the potential transmission of the virus.

Handwashing and Sanitizing: Employees must wash hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds especially after being in a public place, after blowing their nose, coughing, sneezing or touching their face. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% ethanol or 70% isopropyl alcohol. All surfaces of the hands should be rubbed together until they feel dry. Individuals should avoid touching their eyes, nose or mouth, and should wash their hands after touching their face.

Gloves: Health care workers, childcare workers and those deemed in high-risk areas should use gloves as part of PPE (Personal Protective Equipment). Gloves are not necessary for general use and do not replace good hand hygiene such as hand washing.

Coughing/Sneezing Hygiene: If employees are in a private setting and do not have on their face mask/covering, they should always cover their mouth and nose with a tissue when coughing or sneezing and then throw used tissues in the trash. They must immediately wash their hands and/or use hand sanitizer as noted above.