University shares HR guidance for faculty and staff in response to coronavirus outbreak

Employees should telework when possible; university has taken steps to ensure employees who must self-quarantine are able to do so

Johns Hopkins University shared updated guidance for faculty and staff Thursday night in a message from Heidi Conway, vice president for human resources, and Jon Links, vice provost and chief risk and compliance officer.

The full text of the message is below.

Dear Faculty and Staff:

We are writing as a follow-up to President Daniels' communication on Tuesday in response to the fluid and rapidly evolving COVID-19 pandemic.

Although in-person classes have been canceled until at least April 12, JHU campuses remain open and operations will continue. Our university's mission of education, research, and patient care is more important than ever, and that mission is fulfilled by all of you.

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What you need to know
COVID-19 Information

Resources and updates for the Johns Hopkins community, including vaccination and testing guidance, information on university operations, and more

Today we are taking additional steps to help slow the spread of COVID-19 and to ensure your health and safety, following close consultation with Johns Hopkins experts in public health, infectious disease, and emergency management.

Work from home

While the university remains open, we encourage managers to develop and implement telework plans for eligible employees, so that the university can maintain operations while taking every precaution to reduce the spread of infection.

  • Eligible employees should work from home when possible, provided it does not interfere with continued vital university operations and is consistent with our Workplace Flexibility guidelines.
  • Eligible employees are those whose university duties can be completely or substantially performed at a distance or from home, as determined by their manager.

These measures are not just intended to protect the health of teleworking employees. Reducing the number of employees in the workplace is also a critical step to protect the health of our colleagues whose jobs cannot be performed from home.

Faculty and staff who cannot work from home (including employees currently designated for required attendance)

While we encourage telework for eligible employees, there is some work at Johns Hopkins that simply cannot be done from home. For those employees whose duties cannot be completed at home, managers will adopt practices to minimize the spread of infection and protect the well-being of our community, including the following:

  • Establish flexible work schedules for staff where possible to reduce the number of people working near one another at the same time
  • Implement social distancing practices meant to reduce close contact in the workplace (e.g., maintain a distance of 6 feet from others)
  • Consider transitioning all meetings to phone or virtual formats

If you get sick, stay home

Your health and the health of our community is our primary concern. Please follow the university sick policy, and notify your manager if you are sick.

  • If you are concerned that you may have contracted COVID-19, call your healthcare provider and they will help you to determine whether self-isolation or self-quarantine is needed.
  • If you do not have a healthcare provider or cannot obtain an appointment promptly, contact Occupational Health by phone (410-955-6211 before 7:30 a.m. or after 4 p.m., or 410-955-5000 after hours; ask for the Occupational Health Nurse on call).
  • Occupational Health will conduct a screening by phone and provide guidance on whether self-isolation or self-quarantine (or a visit to a medical provider) is needed and help determine if others may have been exposed in the workplace.


If you are told to self-quarantine, even if you are not symptomatic, stay home.

If your healthcare provider instructs you to self-quarantine, notify your manager and Occupational Health by phone (410-955-6211 before 7:30 a.m. or after 4 p.m., or 410-955-5000 after hours; ask for the Occupational Health Nurse on call). Occupational Health will help determine if others may have been exposed in the workplace.

Sick leave

With regard to sick leave, we will ensure that all employees are able to stay at home during the required 14-day period of self-isolation or quarantine.

  • If you have been directed by Occupational Health, a healthcare provider, or a state/local public health official to self-isolate or self-quarantine—due to your COVID-19 diagnosis, your symptoms, or your exposure to a known COVID-19 case—you should stay home. You will be provided leave for the mandated self-isolation/self-quarantine period up to 14 calendar days. This means that you will be given up to 10 business days of COVID-19 leave and the time will not be charged to you.
  • If you are not symptomatic during the period of self-isolation or self-quarantine and telework is feasible, you may coordinate with your supervisor to telework during that period.

Please reach out to your supervisor, HR Business Partner, or local HR team for guidance about additional issues or concerns that may emerge. Faculty should contact their department chair/vice dean for faculty with any questions.

We appreciate your understanding and flexibility. Please continue to watch for additional communications and updates, and to check the Hub's COVID-19 information page for Johns Hopkins community updates.

Finally, we are profoundly grateful to each of you for your support and ask that you take care of yourself and your fellow members of the Johns Hopkins community.


Heidi Conway Vice President for Human Resources

Jon Links Professor, Vice Provost and Chief Risk and Compliance Officer

Posted in University News

Tagged coronavirus