Advice and information on the coronavirus situation

Updated 2 December 2020

UTS College is a registered COVID Safe workplace, which means we've lodged a COVID-19 Safety Plan with NSW Health and we're taking appropriate steps to keep our community safe.
There is no face-to-face teaching on campus at UTS Insearch this semester. All courses will be delivered online via Canvas, UTS online and Zoom until further notice.
 
Academic programs (diplomas and UTS Foundation Studies) will be delivered via remote learning for Semester 3 2020. English Language programs will also be delivered via remote learning for Intake 1.

 
Coming onto campus
 
From Monday 30 March, the Blue Building (187 Thomas Street, Haymarket) is open.

  • Whether you’re a student, staff member or visitor to UTS College, we ask you not to come to campus if you're sick.  If you have symptoms consistent with COVID-19 – even if you have mild symptoms, the safest thing to do is to get tested and stay home until you have a negative result.
  • Bring a face mask to wear where 1.5m physical distancing can't be maintained on campus. (You should also consider wearing a face mask in any indoor settings where physical distancing is hard to maintain.)
  • Wash your hands regularly and practise good hygiene – handwashing is one of the best ways to stop the spread of COVID-19. 
  • Follow our social distancing guidelines – keep your distance, respect others and speak up if people forget to do the right thing.
  • Before coming to campus check the COVID-19 hotspots in NSW and follow the NSW Health advice on monitoring, self-isolation and testing
  • Stay safe as you travel to campus – avoid peak times on public transport wherever possible, and consider walking or riding. 
  • Consider downloading the COVIDSafe app – to allow NSW Health to contact you if you've been in close contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19.


Important Update:
 
  • The Blue Building (187 Thomas Street, Haymarket) is open.
  • Levels 4, 5 and 6 remain open for students.
  • The ground floor Student Lounge is open for students.
  • The Student Centre is delivering services remotely - via RingCentral, online bookings, email and phone services.
  • The Prayer Room is now closed in line with government guidelines.
  • The HELPS Centre is delivering services remotely - offering innovative online support services. 
  • UTS Library and Reading Room is open with updated hours.
  • The majority of Library services such as chat, phone, and email support as well as workshops and consultations will continue to be delivered online. 
  • Access to UTS’s campus now requires swipe cards. UTS Insearch students can enter via the UTS Tower (Building 1) Security by showing your Student ID.
 
For full details on student support, services, guides and resources please refer to our remote learning page.
 
We are following official advice from the Australian Government and the NSW Department of Health in relation to health and safety on campus.
 

 
For full details on student support, services, guides and resources please refer to our remote learning page.
 
We are following official advice from the Australian Government and the NSW Department of Health in relation to health and safety on campus.

FAQs

These frequently asked questions and answers have been adapted from NSW Health’s novel coronavirus FAQs.

We are focused supporting everyone's health and wellbeing, and have a comprehensive plan in place. In addition to our regular cleaning schedule, we're also increasing how often we clean and sanitize tables in common contact points – door handles, lift controls and table surfaces. We have additional hand sanitiser available in bathrooms/toilets, kitchen areas, student lounges and the Student Centre.

Who can come on campus? 

New advice from the Australian Government Chief Medical Officer states that people who have been in contact with any confirmed novel coronavirus cases must be isolated in their home for 14 days following exposure. 

Anyone who has had close contact with someone who has a confirmed case must be isolated in their home for 14 days, other than for seeking individual medical care.

If you develop a fever, a cough, sore throat or shortness of breath (other early symptoms to watch for are chills, body aches, sore throat, headache and runny nose, muscle pain or diarrhoea) within 14 days of exposure, you should:  

  • immediately isolate yourself from other people
  • wear a mask (if available)  
  • seek medical attention as soon as possible, preferably at the local Emergency Department - ideally you should phone ahead to speak to the doctor in the emergency department so that appropriate arrangements can be made to protect others.

And remember, people wearing masks may be taking preventative measures for themselves or protecting themselves from air pollution – they aren’t necessarily sick. 

Advice for students affected by travel restrictions or self-isolation

We are very conscious of the devastating effects that the novel coronavirus (COVID-19) is having on the global community, in terms of health, travel, freedom of movement and economic impacts.  

If this situation is affecting you or your family, we would like to extend our sympathy and assure you that we are doing all we can to support you to commence or resume your studies as soon as possible.  We will continue to update you about impacts on your studies through your UTS email.

We are offering our Academic and English Language programs via remote learning classes. 

How will you help students who are delayed with their English Language program?

We are very aware that you may be concerned about commencing or continuing your English Language studies with us, as you can’t travel to Australia as you had planned due to travel restriction for COVID-19.

Be assured that we will do all that we can to support you so that you can still complete your studies in the timeframe you had expected, and with no or minimal additional financial cost.
Our English Language programs commence every 10 weeks and we will be able to work with you to confirm your study plan once we know more about when you can arrive. 


We are offering our English Language programs via remote learning classes

Our Admission Team and your Education Agent will work together to review your study plan as needed.

I have had trouble accessing my accommodation in Sydney because of concerns about coronavirus, what should I do?

Please email welfare if you require accommodation support. 
 
I’m currently affected by travel restrictions and isolations and can’t return to UTS College or commence on time. Who should I contact?

If you’re a new student and have been blocked from travelling to Australia because of Coronavirus lockdowns, please contact our Admissions team or your Channel Partner to discuss your enrolment and study plan options.

If you’re a continuing or current student and have been blocked from travelling to Australia because of Coronavirus lockdowns, please contact our Student Centre.

If you are in a category of people that needs to isolate themselves for 14 days prior to returning to campus, please email welfare in case you require any support or assistance.

How is Medibank supporting students?

Medibank’s 24/7 Student Health and Support Line can help provide students with guidance on what action to take. Students with Medibank Overseas Student Health Cover (OSHC) can call and speak with a nurse about any health issue by calling 1800 887 283, and they can arrange an interpreter if required.

While there are currently no specific treatments for novel coronavirus, in the unlikely case a student has the coronavirus, Medibank OSHC can still help them get the medical support they need in Australia with qualified health professionals.

 

What are coronaviruses?

Coronaviruses are a family of viruses found in animals and humans. They can range from mild diseases like the common cold to more serious ones.

A novel coronavirus is one that hasn't been identified in humans before. COVID-19 is related to severe acute respiratory syndrome coronavirus and in the same family as MERS (Middle East respiratory syndrome) coronavirus.

NSW Health has implemented a range of measures to identify cases and prevent transmission in NSW. 

What does ‘close contact’ mean?

Close contact is defined as someone who has been face-to-face for at least 15 minutes or been in the same closed space for at least two hours, as someone who has tested positive for the novel coronavirus when that person was infectious.

NSW Health have processes in place to identify and get in touch with any close contacts of cases confirmed in NSW.  

How is COVID-19 spread? Can I catch it? 

Experts believe the novel coronavirus originated in animal species and spread to humans. It’s reported the disease can spread person-to-person, but how and how easily are not yet understood. 

Other human coronavirus strains are spread from person-to-person through contaminated droplets from a person who is sick with the illness (through coughing or sneezing) or hands that haven’t been washed thoroughly. 

How do I wash my hands thoroughly? 

  • Wet hands with soap and water.
  • Wash hands together for at least 15-20 seconds, making sure you wash your thumbs, between your fingers and the backs of your hands. 
  • Rinse hands with water.
  • Dry thoroughly (preferably with a single-use towel). 


Where have active cases of coronavirus been diagnosed? 

You can find the latest information on confirmed cases at International SOS.  

What are the symptoms of coronavirus? 

The most common symptom is a fever. Other symptoms include a cough, sore throat and shortness of breath. Early symptoms to watch for are chills, body aches, sore throat, headache and runny nose, muscle pain or diarrhoea. 

In more severe cases, infection can cause pneumonia with severe acute respiratory distress. Any members of the UTS College community who is unwell or concerned about their health should contact their doctor. 

How long do symptoms take to appear? 

It’s unknown at this stage, but most likely between two and 14 days. 

I think I have symptoms. What should I do? 

If you have travelled to an affected area in the past 14 days or have been in contact with any confirmed novel coronavirus case and have a fever and respiratory signs and other symptoms, don’t panic and take the following steps and actions: 

  • Stay isolated in your home for 14 days other than for seeking individual medical care. 
  • Don’t attend campus. 
  • Call ahead and see a doctor (or your nearest hospital emergency room) as soon as possible. Make sure you tell them you’ve recently been to an affected area or been in contact with confirmed novel coronavirus case. 
  • If your usual doctor is based in the UTS Medical Centre, call the centre on 9514 1777 during business hours to speak with a medical professional. We can assist in directing you to the appropriate health care provider whether that’s a hospital or other medical support.
  • Follow NSW Department of Health’s advice on general hygiene
  • Practise good hygiene by covering your coughs and sneezes with the inside of your elbow, and washing your hands thoroughly, for at least 20 seconds, with soap and water. 


How do students seek medical attention?

If you suspect you may have contracted COVID-19, it’s important to phone or email ahead to explain your specific symptoms and circumstances before seeing a doctor.
You have many options for medical support including:

  • Your own doctor, if you have one
  • UTS Health Service - health.service@uts.edu.au - 9514 1177
  • Medibank 24/7 Student Health and Support Line - 1800 887 283
  • Coronavirus Health Information Line -1800 020 080
  • Healthdirect Helpline - 1800 022 222
  • Nearest hospital emergency ward if you are seriously ill.


What should I do if I come into contact with a person who has symptoms, or who I think has returned to Australia recently from an affected area? 

If it is a confirmed novel coronavirus case you must be isolated in your home for 14 days following exposure. 

Monitor your health. If you develop symptoms (as listed above), please call ahead to talk to a doctor. Tell your doctor that you have been in contact with someone from an area affected by coronavirus and follow their advice.  

How can I protect myself and my family? 

Avoid contact, when possible, with anyone showing symptoms of respiratory illness such as coughing and sneezing.  

You can also follow simple hygiene by: 

  • covering your coughs and sneezes with the inside of your elbow
  • washing your hands thoroughly  
  • carrying hand sanitiser for use in the event soap and water are not readily available  
  • avoid touching your face. 

Should I isolate myself?

NSW Health advises:

  • If you have been in contact with a person with confirmed novel coronavirus infection while they were infectious, you must quarantine (isolate) yourself for 14 days after your last contact with that person.
  • If you have recently returned from traveling overseas, please follow all health guidelines for isolation prior to arriving in Australia, and continue to monitor your health for 14 days after arrival.
If I am required to self-isolate, what guidelines should I follow?
NSW Health offers this advice for: Material is also available in Chinese:

Government travel restrictions

A travel ban is in place for all Australians until further notice. 
Anyone who arrives into Australia from overseas must self-isolate for 14 days, even if you don't have symptoms.
These measures are temporary and are being reviewed periodically by the Australian Government. The latest detailed travel advice can be viewed at the Department of Home Affairs website

Where can I find more information? 

We will monitor and update this page as required. If you have any questions or concerns, you can also visit: