COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan

Individual Responsibility

Each Reed community member has an individual responsibility to help prevent the spread of the coronavirus.

Agreement to Comply with Public Health Expectations

All members of the Reed community and campus visitors are expected to follow public health guidance from the Oregon Health Authority (OHA) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). They are also expected to comply with the protocols outlined in Reed's COVID-19 Prevention & Response Plan. Expectations include the following:

Students who live on campus must sign and comply with public health expectations outlined in the COVID-19 addendum to the housing contract. Students who live on campus can sign the form in IRIS here.

Students who live off campus but will be accessing Reed campus during the semester must sign and comply the Spring 2021 Acknowledgement of Risk and Prevention Form. Students who live off campus but will be accessing campus can sign the form in IRIS here

If you are a Reed community member who will not access the Reed campus over the spring 2021 semester, please let the college know by completing the No Access to Reed Campus Form.

Members of the Reed community are encouraged to support each other in complying with the college's prevention and response plan as well as with any other documents that have been signed. This includes, when comfortable and appropriate, reminding one another of these requirements when noncompliance is observed.


Until there is a vaccine for COVID-19, avoiding exposure to the virus is crucial.

Wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Remind yourself to do this after you spend time in a public place, blow your nose, or cough or sneeze. If soap and water are not readily available, use a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol. Cover all surfaces of your hands and rub them together until they feel dry.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth with unwashed hands.

Avoid close contact with other people.

  • Keep six feet (about two arms’ length) of distance between yourself and other people. Keeping distance from others is especially important for people who are at higher risk of getting very sick.
  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick, including those in your home or residence hall.
  • Remember that people without symptoms may be carriers of the virus.

Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face covering when around others.

  • You could spread the virus to others even if you do not feel sick.
  • Wear a cloth face covering when you are in public—for example, while you are in the grocery store.
    • Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under the age of two or on anyone who has trouble breathing or is unconscious, incapacitated, or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance.
  • Cloth face coverings protect other people in case you are infected.
  • Do not use a professional-grade face mask meant for a health-care worker.
  • A cloth face covering is not a substitute for social distancing.

Cover coughs and sneezes.

  • Always cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze or use the inside of your elbow.
  • Do not spit.
  • Throw used tissues in the trash.
  • Immediately wash your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds after coughing or sneezing. If soap and water are not readily available, clean your hands with a hand sanitizer that contains at least 60% alcohol.

Clean and disinfect.


April Sams
Director of Risk Management & Environmental Health and Safety
Physical Plant

Face Coverings

The use of facial coverings inhibits the most common form of coronavirus transmission: when one person breathes the respiratory particles of another.

Face coverings are required* at all times while on the Reed campus unless you are:

  • inside your dorm room or private residence, with only the people who live there;
  • inside your own personal vehicle, alone or only with members of your household;
  • eating or drinking at least 6 feet away from others**;
  • engaged in an essential activity that makes wearing a mask, face covering or face shield not feasible (e.g., taking a shower or completing oral hygiene);
  • in a private, individual workspace;
  • removing the mask briefly because your identity needs to be confirmed;
  • removing the mask briefly for healthcare purposes, upon request by a medical professional.

* Individuals under five (5) years of age are not required to wear face coverings while on Reed campus.
** While eating or drinking and socializing, you must maintain a minimum of 6 feet distance from others and only remove your face covering briefly to eat or drink.

A “face covering” is defined by OHA as a cloth, polypropylene, paper or other face covering that covers the nose and the mouth and that rests snugly above the nose, below the mouth, and on the sides of the face. Examples of face coverings include, but are not limited to, a disposable mask, neck gaiter, scarf or bandana. Face coverings must fit snugly on the nose and under the mouth. Scarves or bandanas that do not fit snugly below the mouth or chin are not acceptable face coverings.A covering that incorporates a valve that is designed to facilitate easy exhalation, mesh masks, lace masks or other covers with openings, holes, visible gaps in the design or material, or vents are not face coverings because they allow droplets to be released from the mask.

Face coverings:

  • Face coverings should not be overly tight or restrictive and should feel comfortable to wear and allow free breathing.
  • Two or more layers of covering/fabric are better than one layer. For example, OHA recommends doubling or folding over a single layer to increase effectiveness.
  • A combination of layers such as cotton with polypropylene or polyester are better than a single type of covering/fabric.

Reed provides two layered reusable cloth face coverings to all students, faculty, and staff on campus. You can pick up face coverings at the facilities service window or look for EHS outside of commons throughout the semester. Please contact environmental health and safety if you need help obtaining face coverings. Face coverings can also be purchased at the Reed bookstore or made at home.

See the communication sent on August 7, 2020, for more detailed information regarding accessing personal protective equipment (PPE) and cleaning supplies.


There is not enough information right now to know whether new variant strains of SARS-CoV-2 change the effectiveness of cloth face coverings. As more studies address these variants and the circumstances under which transmission occurs, we will respond accordingly.

Social distancing and minimizing your in-person activities remains the most effective means of preventing transmission of any COVID-19 strain. Regardless of what kind of mask you're wearing, the way to be most certain of your level of protection is to avoid close and prolonged contact with others.

The CDC does not recommend more advanced masks for most individuals. The country still faces shortages of N95s. Reed continues to seek these masks from our medical supplier and reserves them for community members who are providing critical care to known or suspected COVID-19 positive individuals and for those entering the isolation hall. We do have a limited supply of KN95 masks that are available, based on your exposure risk, by request at If you would like to purchase KN95s on your own, please follow the Emergency Use Authorization guidelines issued by the FDA to ensure effectiveness. You can also view effectiveness results on NIOSHs assessment page.

Accommodation Request

To apply for an accommodation request in relation to this protocol, contact disability and accessibility resources (students) or human resources (faculty and staff) about next steps.


April Sams
Director of Risk Management & Environmental Health and Safety
Physical Plant

Physical Distancing

COVID-19 spreads mainly among people who are in close contact (within about six feet) for a prolonged period. You can reduce your chances of contracting the virus by practicing physical distancing. Physical distancing, also known as social distancing, means keeping a safe space between yourself and other people. To practice physical distancing, stay at least six feet (about two arms’ length) from other people who are not from your household. Wearing a cloth face covering is not a substitute for physical distancing.

All Reed community members are expected to practice physical distancing. While on campus, we ask all community members to maintain physical distance in shared spaces regardless of whether or not you are from the same household. Additionally, living in the same residence hall does not qualify as a household; therefore, anyone living in a residence hall must maintain physical distance.

Classrooms, offices, and lecture halls have been reconfigured to help students, faculty, and staff maintain proper physical distance. Reed has also implemented various control measures in some spaces, such as plexiglass barriers, staggered schedules, occupancy rules, traffic flow, and closures, to decrease exposure risk.

The tables under the Quad tents outside of commons each have a plexiglass barrier to provide a suitable substitute for six feet of distance and face-covering requirements as long as there is just one person on each side of the plexiglass and the tables themselves are six feet or more apart from each other. Chairs should stay in their current positions and not be moved around to other tables.


April Sams
Director of Risk Management & Environmental Health and Safety
Physical Plant

What to Do If You Have Symptoms

If you test positive for COVID-19, have COVID-19-like symptoms, or have been exposed to the coronavirus, follow these guidelines.

Faculty and Staff

Contact human resources to report COVID-like symptoms or exposure to someone with COVID-19. HR will call you to provide support and next steps. If it is determined that you have had close contact with someone who is contagious with COVID-19, you will be asked to quarantine at home, monitor for symptoms, and contact your health-care provider. HR will provide directions about returning to work.


Human Resources


Whether you live on or off campus, if you have COVID-like symptoms or suspect that you have been exposed to a person with COVID-19, stay in your place of residence and call the health & counseling center. HCC staff will provide you with instructions about next steps, which may include a telehealth appointment, testing for COVID-19, and self-isolation. You must not leave your residence or attend class if you have symptoms or a suspected exposure to COVID-19 until you have been cleared by staff at the HCC.


Health & Counseling Services
Health & Counseling Center

When to seek emergency medical attention

Look for emergency warning signs* for COVID-19. If you or someone you know is showing any of these signs, seek emergency medical care immediately:

  • Trouble breathing
  • Persistent pain or pressure in the chest
  • New confusion
  • Inability to wake or stay awake
  • Bluish lips or face

*This list does not include all possible symptoms. Please call the health & counseling center or your medical provider to assess any other symptoms that are severe or concerning to you.

Call 911 or call ahead to your local emergency facility; notify the operator that you are seeking care for yourself or someone who has or may have COVID-19.

Isolation and Quarantining

Isolation and quarantine help protect the public by preventing exposure to people who have or may have a contagious disease.

On-campus students who test positive for COVID-19 will be relocated to a residence hall designated for isolation. Students identified as having experienced close contact with the positive individual while contagious will be instructed to quarantine in their residence hall rooms for 14 days. Students isolating or quarantining on the Reed campus will receive delivered meals, cleaning supplies for their restrooms and living spaces, dedicated academic support, and regular telehealth check-ins from a member of Reed's medical team.

Faculty, staff, and off-campus students who test positive for COVID-19 are required to isolate off campus. Faculty, staff, and off-campus students who are identified as having come into close contact with an individual who tested positive while that individual was contagious must enter and remain in quarantine at their private residences for 14 days.

A negative test does not release an individual from isolation or quarantine early. For more information, see our fall communication on COVID-19 investigations at Reed.

COVID-19 Vaccine

The COVID-19 vaccine is an important tool to help stop the pandemic. The COVID-19 Risk Assessment Group has worked to answer the Reed community's frequently asked questions about vaccine distribution, eligibility, and more. We encouraged you to carefully review the FAQ and regularly review the eligibility schedule that the state has outlined in consideration of your circumstances.


Health & Counseling Services
Health & Counseling Center

Faculty & Staff:
Human Resources