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March 25 - Updates on COVID-19

Section 1


Personal Protective Equipment

There have been many generous inquiries on the part of the campus community to reallocate/repurpose needed equipment to the UCI Medical Center (UCIMC) as they respond to the COVID-19 crisis. In an effort to coordinate internal reallocation/repurposing of these items and assist UCIMC with their urgent need for personal protective equipment (PPE), Environmental Health and Safety (EH&S) will be the point of contact for the campus.

The items that UCIMC will accept are the following: 

  • Face shields
  • Goggles
  • General face masks
  • Gloves
  • N95 respirators
  • Isolation gowns (disposable)
  • Hand sanitizer (manufacturer made, not components)

EH&S will be accepting items at 4600 Health Sciences Road, building 41 on the campus map, on the following days and times:

  • Thursday, 3/26 (8 a.m. - noon)
  • Tuesday, 3/31 (8 a.m. - noon)
  • Wednesday, 4/01 (8 a.m. - noon)
  • Thursday, 4/02 (8 a.m. - noon)

Before delivery, please fill out an online intake form. For any questions, email safety@uci.edu.

Pharmaceutical Sciences Doing COVID-19 Testing & Research

UCI faculty and scientists are rising to the challenge of protecting communities across Orange County during this difficult time. In the lab, the School of Pharmaceutical Sciences is working on creating tools for expedient testing and blocking the SARS CoV-2 virus. Many faculty members are experts on the development of diagnostic methods and on RNA, which makes up the CoV-2’s genome. In the clinic, UCI pharmacists are working alongside other healthcare providers to develop COVID-19 treatment protocols to best serve our communities. 


UC Travel Insurance Update

The UC travel insurance provider has agreed to provide assistance to everyone traveling on UC business whether or not they signed up for the insurance. This means ALL travelers on UC business are covered at this time whether or not they registered for the UC travel insurance program. Note that there may be limitations due to US government restrictions, citizenship, etc. UHCG will work with travelers on their individual cases. Travelers, please notify covid19@uci.edu with updates about your situation, where you are and whether you need assistance.

UC SHIP and COVID-19: A Guide for Students and Parents

The Student Health Center has created a web page to provide guidance and useful information regarding how the UC Student Health Insurance Plan (UC SHIP) will function during periods of mandatory remote learning imposed as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic. More information is available on the Student Health Center’s guide for students and parents.

Campus to Campus Shuttle

The campus-to-campus medical center shuttle will remain in operation on a modified schedule. As you board the shuttle, show your UCI ID to the driver to verify that you are part of the UC Irvine community. The modified schedule is available as a PDF online.

Sustainable Transportation Membership Update

UCI Transportation is working closely with our rideshare and transit partners so the campus community has reliable commuting options. Metrolink, Amtrak, and OCTA have taken on several proactive measures to help safeguard your health, including increasing the cleaning frequency of passenger cars and buses and applying enhanced anti-viral disinfectants on surfaces. If you have any questions, please email Erika Hennon atehennon@uci.edu. 

Online Privacy Resources for Faculty

Faculty received additional guidance from the Office of Teaching & Learning on how to best utilize privacy settings as they continue to engage with UCI’s learning management system (LMS), with Canvas and with Zoom. The guidance on privacy is both for their instructional material, as well as for the benefit of the students’ privacy, as the university prepares for remote instruction for Spring quarter.

UC Updates

U of California Issues Guidance: Don’t Use Term “Chinese Virus”

The University of California (UC) system has issued a ‘guidance document’ advising campus officials, faculty, administrators, students and staff to not use the term “Chinese virus” to describe the coronavirus. Read more at UCOP’s Equity and Inclusion During COVID-19 website. 

COVID-19 Information for UC Employees 

The UC Office of the President has prepared information and recommendations to assist academic leaders, managers, and supervisors in addressing concerns related to COVID-19. The guidance, available at UC Net, applies to all UC locations, including campuses, UC health systems, Agriculture & Natural Resources, and the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory.


Orange County Residents can Sign up for Text Message Alerts About COVID-19

Effective immediately, residents can now sign up to receive text message updates related to novel coronavirus (COVID-19) in Orange County, California. To opt-in for this service, text OCCOVID19 to 888777. Residents who have questions about an update can contact the County of Orange Public Information Hotline at (714) 628-7085 between 9 a.m. and 6 p.m. daily.

Closure of OC Parks

To minimize the impacts of novel coronavirus (COVID-19) on park patrons, OC Parks is implementing closures expected to reinforce social distancing and reduce large public gatherings. These measures are in line with recommendations from federal, state and local health agencies. 

Closures effective Wednesday, March 25, 2020 include:

  • Parking lots at all County beaches, regional parks and wilderness parks
  • Parking spaces at all County trailheads
  • Pedestrian access points at Thousand Steps, Table Rock, West, Camel Point, and Treasure Island beaches
  • Restrooms, playgrounds, exercise equipment, and shelters at all County parks and beaches

Passive walk-through pedestrian, cycling and equestrian activity is permitted.

Visit the OC Parks website for a list of County beaches and parks and more information.

Call for Volunteers and Donations in Orange County

Orange County has activated its virtual Emergency Volunteer Center (EVC) managed by OneOC. Orange County non-profits are requesting volunteers and donations to support their activities. Social distancing of 6 feet or more and personal protective measures to prevent close contact are in place. To volunteer/donate, visit the OneOC volunteer website.

Federal Partners Continue Providing Resources for COVID-19 Response Efforts

The federal government continues to take aggressive and proactive steps to address the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic. The health and safety of the American people is our top priority. We are halfway through 15 Days to Slow the Spread. Do your part to flatten the curve:

  • Stay home as much as possible. 
  • If you need to go out, practice social distancing. 

FDA on Expanding Ventilators

The Food and Drug Administration has released guidance (PDF) to help expand the availability of ventilators and other respiratory devices to support response efforts to the pandemic.

FEMA Advisory on Testing Sites

FEMA has released a new COVID-19 pandemic advisory (PDF) that describes how community-based testing sites will be managed and provides further information about the Defense Production Act.

Resources for Front-line Workers from the Joint Commission

The Joint Commission has posted a collection of online resources for organizations preparing for or responding to the COVID-19 pandemic. Included are tips for hospitals for managing equipment shortages creating surge capacity. The resources can be found on the Joint Commission website.

UCI IN THE NEWS - COVID-19 Article List

The State, March 25, 2020 
How will the coronavirus affect crime rates? It’s complicated, experts say

KCRW, March 25, 2020 (Audio) 
Can The U.S. Crowdsource Its Way Out Of A Mask Shortage? No, But It Still Helps

Washington Examiner, March 25, 2020 (Opinion) 
Opinion: Big and small tech innovation makes #PandemicLife tolerable

Diverse: Issues in Higher Education, March 24, 2020 
UC Irvine Opens Online Learning Research Center as Coronavirus Forces Faculty Online

BuzzFeed News, March 24, 2020 
The Coronavirus Is Sending Lots Of Younger People To The Hospital

The Guardian, March 24, 2020 
‘Coughing while Asian’: living in fear as racism feeds off coronavirus panic

KPBS (CNS), March 24, 2020 
UC Hospitals Begin Recruiting For Coronavirus Drug Trials

LAist, March 24, 2020 
The Presidential Election In November May Be Held At Your Mailbox Thanks To COVID-19

ABC10, March 24, 2020 
UCSD Health assessing antiviral treatment for COVID-19

Daily Pilot, March 24, 2020 
Newport Beach piers are quiet the day before they close as a measure to fight coronavirus

Becker’s Health IT, March 23, 2020
Leading health system IT teams during the coronavirus pandemic: Key insights from UC Irvine’s Tom Andriola