Working together to keep HKU Campus Safe

The Task Force on Infectious Diseases (TFID) has been working closely with the HKU community to provide a safe campus for staff and students. This handout is especially prepared for those who are joining us at the University in the September semester of 2022.

HKU VACCINE PASS

  1. The COVID-19 vaccination is considered to be the most effective measure to stop the spread of the virus and prevent severe cases, hospitalisation and death.
  2. Staff and students should visit HKU COVID-19 Info Hub – a resource repository that provides all updates, information and advice related to the actions that the University is taking against the spread of COVID-19. In particular, you are all invited to read HKU COVID-Info Hub – FAQs (All) for the latest requirements on all precautionary actions that staff and students have to take while being on campus.
  3. If you are medically unsuitable for vaccination, you will need to consult a doctor to obtain from the doctor an Exemption Certificate. In case you are visiting a private clinic for such purpose, please note that you may have to pay a fee to do so. More information on the details, including the validity period of the Exemption Certificate, can be found here.
  4. In case you had contracted the virus and have recovered, you are expected to follow the special vaccination requirements as listed on the HKU Vaccine Pass page.
  5. To enter the campus, you will need to install and use the LeaveHomeSafe (LHS) app on your mobile phone to scan a venue QR code. This QR code is posted at all entrances to the Main Campus. Once you scan the code, the LHS app will automatically display the QR code of your vaccination record or your exemption certificate. These records and certificates can serve as indication that you are in compliance with the HKU Vaccine Pass.

COVID-19 VACCINES IN HONG KONG

  1. The Government has implemented a territory-wide COVID-19 Vaccination Programme. Hong Kong residents, who possess a valid Hong Kong identity card, can choose to receive either the BioNTech vaccine or the Sinovac vaccine.
  2. In case you do not have a Hong Kong identity card, you are considered a non-local resident in Hong Kong. In such case, you are still eligible to receive vaccination. If you are a new staff who does not have a resident status yet, please visit the “Non-local Resident” page on the Government website to find out how you may receive vaccination as a non-local resident. If you are a new non-local student, please visit the “Special Notes to Non-local Students” instead for details.
  3. The University Health Service (UHS) of the University provides Sinovac vaccination services to all staff and students free-of-charge. For details and appointment booking, please call the UHS at 3917 2914.
  4. Students who are under the age of 18 are required to present a consent form with an original handwritten signature by parents/guardians before they are allowed to receive the vaccination. The consent form can be downloaded at the website of the government’s Department of Health.

REPORTING ILLNESS

Reporting Illness to the Department of Health, Isolation and Quarantine

  1. If you tested positive for COVID-19, please read the “Points to note for persons who tested positive”, which is available at the Department of Health website, for the latest measures on treatment, isolation and the information on how you should report your case to the Department of Health.
  2. Other than reporting to the Department of Health, you may find information about designated clinics for treating COVID patients and all other pre-admission support services provided to patients or people who are in close contact of patients.


Reporting Illness to HKU Task Force on Infectious Diseases (TFID)

  1. You are required to report to the TFID, as soon as possible, once you have obtained positive results UNLESS you have not been to the HKU campus, or to the student residences, for 7 days or more prior to the date of your COVID-19 test.
  2. You are also required to report to the TFID if you have been in close contact with someone who is tested positive with COVID (RAT or as determined by the Centre for Health Protection or by HKU’s definition of close contact) unless you have not been to the HKU campus (or the halls of residence) during the last 7 days before your contact is tested positive.
  3. To report to the TFID, you have to complete an online form at the HKU COVID-19 Info Hub – Reporting Protocols.
  4. If you are a staff member of an academic unit and tested positive against COVID-19, please keep your Faculty Secretary informed. If you are a staff member of an administrative unit, please inform your unit head.
  5. If you are a student, please inform your home Faculty, thesis supervisor and / or programme director as well as the management office of your student residence as soon as you can. You will have to apply for leave through them.
  6. Faculties or student residences may take different actions in relation to your being tested positive or being determined by the Centre of Health Protection as a close contact. The actions that they may take can be found on this webpage (with a flow chart). You are advised to strictly follow the protocols for isolation, cohorting, reporting, testing, contact tracing and others as suggested. Please note that the guidelines may change from time-to-time depending on the latest situation with the spread of COVID-19 in Hong Kong.
  7. If you find yourself having any COVID-19 symptoms or if you suspect yourself to have been in close contact with someone who tested positive, you are strongly advised to take a rapid antigen test. In the case that the result is positive, you should not return to the campus. Instead, you should report your case to the Department of Health and inform the University following the Reporting Protocols as required.

HYGIENE PRACTICES AND HEALTH TIPS

To ensure that you remain healthy, you are advised to follow the following hygiene practices all the time.

  1. Monitor your health condition daily. If you feel unwell, do not return to the campus. Seek medical advice promptly.
  2. Maintain personal and environmental hygiene at all times.
  3. Avoid touching your eyes, nose, or mouth with unwashed hands.
  4. Wash hands frequently with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If hand washing facilities are not available, perform hand hygiene with 70% to 80% alcohol-based handrub.
  5. Perform hand hygiene as often as possible, especially before wearing and after removing a mask; before touching mouth, nose or eyes; before eating or handling food; after using toilet; after touching public installations such as handrails or door knobs; or when hands are contaminated by respiratory secretions after coughing or sneezing.
  6. Put the toilet lid down before flushing to prevent splashing germs out as far as 6 feet away, polluting the surrounding environment.
  7. Hand sanitizer dispensers are installed at various places on campus. Please also bring your alcohol-based handrub for your own use.
  8. Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw used tissues in the trash and wash your hands properly.
  9. Avoid face-to-face close contacts with others (especially when either side is not wearing a mask, such as when eating).
  10. Get vaccinated as soon as possible.
  11. Maintain a healthy lifestyle to enhance body immunity. Have a balanced diet, exercise regularly, and get enough rest and sleep.


Wearing Face Masks in a Public Place

  1. All staff and students must wear a face mask in public on all the University’s properties, both indoor and outdoor. For details, please check out the requirements on the Prevention and Control of Disease (Wearing of Mask) Regulation (Cap. 599I).
  2. According to the Regulation, a person who is considered as wearing a face mask if his / her mask covers his / her nose and mouth, and chin and cheeks.
  3. For students who reside in the student halls / colleges / residences, you are reminded to pay attention to infection control guidelines specific to each of them. For details, please check with the management office of your student halls / colleges / residences.

Mental Health and Well-Being

  1. HKU has made every effort to provide a range of support services for your physical and mental well-being. Please check out the followings for information about keeping yourself well during the pandemic: (i) Gearing up in Times of Covid-19 (hosted by Center of Development and Resources for Students [CEDARS]), (ii) Wellcation, (iii) LoveHK LoveU, (iv) Maintaining Psychological Health amid Fears of Novel Coronavirus Spreading 「疫」境自強護心法, (v) COVID-19 psychological support website and resource – 「家伴毅行 心靈抗疫計劃」情緒支援活動及資料庫 (Language: Chinese).
  2. If a student would like to talk to a counsellor, you are advised to contact the CEDARS-Counselling and Person Enrichment Section for support. Email: cedars-cope@hku.hk  Tel.: 39178388.


Social Distancing and Infection Control Measures for HKU Events

  1. As maintaining social distancing is the key to curbing the spread of the COVID-19 virus, the Government has constantly been monitoring the effectiveness of various measures. Appropriate adjustment is expected to be made from time to time and you have to take note of all changes that may affect you.
  2. All staff and students should take note of the latest guidelines on infection control measures for HKU events announced by the Government and https://covid19.hku.hk/events-crowd-management/.
  3. Unvaccinated individuals, and all those who otherwise have a higher risk of infection, should strictly observe physical distancing while on campus.


Campus Services

  1. The following operators of various campus services have implemented various COVID-prevention measures to ensure that the best possible services can be provided safely according to the guidelines of the University’s TFID. These operators include those who are providing services at (i) the amenities and cultural centres, (ii) the catering outlets, (iii) the Estates Office (security, facility management and transportation services), (iv) the HKU Visitor Centre, (v) the Information Technology Services, (vi) the libraries, (vii) the museums, (viii) the sports centres, (ix) the student residences and Senior Staff Quarters, (x) the teaching and learning spaces, (xi) the University Health Service, and other academic and non-academic units.
  2. You are advised to check out the most updated information on work and teaching arrangements on a regular basis. Detailed information regarding COVID-19 related arrangements will be updated from time to time depending on the latest situations in Hong Kong.

SPECIAL NOTES TO NON-LOCAL STUDENTS

If you are studying in Hong Kong as a non-local student and belonging to one or more of the following categories, you are strongly advised to read the following information carefully.

  1. If you are an exchange or visiting student who will stay and study in Hong Kong for less than 180 days and is not eligible to apply for a Hong Kong identity card, you may like to note that the COVID-19 Vaccination Programme that is administered by the HKSAR government also extends services to you for as long as you have a valid student visa. Students can register to join the vaccination programme at a post office near you. You can find details at this Government website under the heading of “Non-Hong Kong Residents”.
  2. If you are permitted to stay and study in Hong Kong for more than 180 days and can obtain a Hong Kong identity card from the Hong Kong Immigration with a valid student visa, then you are considered a Hong Kong resident. If you would like to get vaccinated in Hong Kong, you can make an online appointment at this Government website. Please note that you should apply for a Hong Kong identity card within 30 days of arrival in Hong Kong. A Hong Kong identity card entitles you to pay a lower fee for health services at government clinics and hospitals. In the case that there is any delay in your obtaining a Hong Kong identity card, please note that you will have to register for the Vaccination Programme as a non-local resident (see Point 2 above).
  3. If you are under 18 years of age, you will need to present a consent form signed by your parents or guardians at the time that you receive vaccination. Otherwise, you will not be permitted to do so. The consent form can be downloaded at the Department of Health. Please note that an electronic signature from your parents or guardians is not acceptable.
  4. To comply with the Vaccine Pass, you will have to follow the guidelines and requirements as stated under “Declaration of Non-local COVID-19 Vaccination or Recovery Record” at this Government website.
  5. You may like to make reference to a full list of acceptable COVID-19 vaccines for fulfilling the COVID-19 control measures on campus.
  6. The Government has made arrangements for all inbound travelers to obtain a “Provisional Vaccine Pass” for use in Hong Kong. You may like to visit this Government website for details.
  7. If you are medically unsuitable to receive COVID-19 vaccination, you must obtain a COVID-19 Vaccination Medical Exemption Certificate issued by a local doctor. These certificates can be printed with encrypted QR code after your Provisional Vaccine Pass expires. These certificates need to be issued either in Chinese or English. Non-local medical certificates cannot be used to obtain the local Vaccine Pass. More details can be found under the FAQS of this Government website.
  8. You are advised to come to Hong Kong earlier to allow sufficient time for the followings: (i) quarantine; (ii) application for a Hong Kong identity card (if applicable); (iii) getting vaccinated (if applicable); (iv) declaration of non-local COVID-19 Vaccination or Recovery Record; (v) joining orientation activities; and (vi) settling into the student halls or a rented flat and opening bank accounts, etc. You may like to refer to the pre-arrival tips, tips for arrival and settling in on the webpage of Centre of Development and Resources for Students (CEDARS).
  9. For your information, you may find the following links useful: (i) LeaveHomeSafe mobile app (How it works and how to download it); (ii) Points to note for inbound travellers (Points to note before arrival, boarding, testing and quarantine arrangements and more); (iii) HKU COVID-Info Hub (A resource centre that brings together updates, information and advice related to the University’s activities) and HKU COVID-Info Hub – FAQs (All); and (iv) University Health Service (UHS).