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Remote working

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Can I work from home?

In line with this Government guidance on 23 March 2020 the University has decided that its education, research and administrative functions will operate online and remotely with immediate effect. The University is strongly supportive of all government guidelines and understands the urgent need for increased social isolation. 

This means that the University site will be closed until further notice to all but essential staff. These include those required for University maintenance and those who are part of our major Covid-19 research effort, involving both clinical and laboratory science. 

Your manager may, if necessary, ask you to undertake alternative duties from home (eg if you cannot access a specific system at home). Guidance for remote working and accessing University systems remotely can be found here.  

Now that I am working from home, what costs will the University cover?

If you require equipment to work from home, for example a laptop, headphones or webcam, you should speak to your manager who can liaise with Information Services about providing the necessary equipment. Any costs would be borne by the department’s budget. The University does not reimburse for any other costs associated with working from home, for example utility bills, broadband or stationery supplies.

How can I work well remotely?

Read our guidance for working from home, including accessing your apps, documents and St George's IT systems.

Follow our checklist for ensuring your workstation is set up correctly at home.

We have created a dedicated area on Canvas for all staff, which is now available to you as we continue to prepare for remote and online delivery of courses at St George’s.

For St George’s staff, you can access this support area here or https://canvas.sgul.ac.uk/courses/36.

For HSCE staff, do not click on this link until you have logged into Canvas and opened up a SGUL awarded module (and your URL states https://canvas.sgul.ac.uk/), then click on the link provided above (this is because you need to authenticate before accessing the link).

If you require support on the use of any of the recommended technologies, please email LTS@sgul.ac.uk

I have teaching scheduled. How do I prepare to deliver this online?

As of Monday 23 March, all teaching and support will be offered remotely online. We will be asking students to check their emails and Canvas for updates from their relevant programme team.    

Assessment processes play a key role in the graduation and progression of our students, which remain priorities. We are working through details of arrangements for assessments and coursework. However, we will not be requiring students to take assessments on site this academic year.  

To ensure that we are well-prepared to deliver teaching and learning activities remotely, we have identified the core hardware/infrastructure needed to deliver teaching and learning remotely. These are: 

  • Internet connection 

  • Web-enabled device (PC/laptop/tablet/phone) 

  • Audio playback (most devices have this built-in) 

  • Webcam (most devices have this built-in) 

  • Microphone (most devices have this built-in) 

  • Headphones or headset (as an alternative to audio playback and microphone).  

Guidance for staff to support plans is available on Canvas here. You can also read our full remote delivery plan (PDF). 

If you feel that you are not equipped with one of these, could you please contact edtech@sgul.ac.uk so that we can liaise with you directly on how we might be able to support you.

Working on-site / Research and clinical staff

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I am a member of research staff. What preparations do I need to consider now should the University be further affected?
Further information can be found here.
I am a clinical academic and may be required to increase my clinical work to support the NHS in dealing with Covid-19. How should I reorganise my work for the University to enable me to do this?

You should discuss the situation with your manager within St George’s, University of London so that you can determine what can be de-prioritised.

I am a clinical academic. What is the University’s position if I need to reallocate my duties to do clinical work?

We support colleagues who want to contribute more to clinical service. However, we need to ensure that our students are also supported in their studies and related assessments, to ensure they graduate on time. 

Where clinical colleagues have a leadership role in either education or research, they should identify an ‘academic buddy’. If clinical work becomes more of a focus, the ‘buddy’ would take over their university responsibilities to ensure business continuity. 

I am a member of research staff involved in clinical research studies at St George's. What action do I need to take?
Read our guidance for clinical research studies.
I am a member of research staff involved in a proposed or existing clinical research study which is sponsored by St George’s University or St George’s Trust. What action do I need to take?

In light of the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the majority of clinical research across St George’s will be temporarily suspended in accordance with the guidance Implications of COVID 19 on clinical research studies. Our priority will be to support COVID-19 related clinical research studies.  

If you are currently either setting-up a study or have an existing study which is sponsored by St George’s NHS Trust/University, and involves seeing study participants at St George’s, please refer to this guidance document issued by the Joint Research and Enterprise Services (JRES) which has regard for the current Health Research Authority (HRA) advice. 

I want to set-up a COVID-19 study, can I get this approved quickly? 

The HRA are fast-tracking all studies concerning COVID-19, and facilitating the set-up of COVID-19 studies is the highest priority for JRES. If you are planning to conduct a study in this disease area, please contact the Head of Research Governance and Delivery, Subhir Bedi in the first instance - sbedi@sgul.ac.uk 

I want to amend my study to address elements related to COVID-19, how shall I do this? 

We recognise that you may want to amend your protocol to include additional testing for SARS-CoV-2, take new samples, collect additional epidemiological data etc.  

Please discuss this with your JRES Research Governance & Facilitation Officer at your earliest convenience to advise you of the best process. 

Will I be able to commence/continue with setting up my Clinical Research Study? 

Yes, the JRES will continue to work with you and support you through all processes to set up your study, including the ethics submission, contracts and finance processes. However, please note that you will only be able to start your research at St George’s when approved by the Trust, which will be once the current burden on the health service alleviates (unless this is a COVID-19 related study or falls under other exceptions made by the Associate Medical Director (Research) as outlined in the guidance Implications of COVID 19 on clinical research studies). 

If you have not already submitted your study documents to the JRES to initiate Sponsorship review, please send them to your nominated Research Governance & Facilitation Officer or the shared inbox (researchgovernance@sgul.ac.uk). The JRES will be able to review and provide feedback on your research project in order to assess suitability for confirmation of Sponsorship. 

Whilst the HRA is still accepting submissions for approval, it is unclear how long they will continue to do this and we are cognisant that applications for COVID-19 trials are taking precedence. 

Please be aware that as of the 20th March 2020, the HRA has stopped accepting undergraduate and masters level research projects requiring their ethical and or compliance review.  

My study has already been submitted and I am just waiting for approvals, can I still start my research? 

No, in line national procedures, the JRES will be pausing the Confirmation of Capacity & Capability approval process until the Trust sanctions this apart from COVID-19 related studies and other exceptions made by the Associate Medical Director (Research) as outlined in the guidance Implications of COVID 19 on clinical research studies

If you feel your study should be treated as an exception at St George’s during this time, please discuss this with Subhir Bedi, Head of Research Governance & Delivery - sbedi@sgul.ac.uk 

What about NIHR performance metrics? 

The NIHR have issued reassurance that metrics will be adjusted or suspended to account for the current situation. 

Who do I need to inform if patient recruitment and/or the study is suspended? 

JRES will keep a record of classification of studies and decisions made the in accordance with the guidance Implications of COVID 19 on clinical research studies

Please get in touch with your Research Governance & Facilitation Officer to inform us of the particular situation with your study. You do not need to inform the Research Ethics Committee (REC) or the HRA that you have temporarily suspended recruitment, as this is to be expected. 

Simply pausing recruitment does not need to be reported as a temporary halt, although researchers should record such decisions for their records. For a formal suspension of all trials activity: 

  • CTIMPs, in the scenarios where MHRA has advised this would be substantial amendment, such amendments will be categorised and assessed according to existing guidance, but the process will be expedited. They should be sent to sites following the instructions above. These should be implemented at sites on the date specified by the sponsor. 

  • non-CTIMPs where a formal halt is required, there should be a non-substantial amendment that does not require HRA/HCRW Approval or R&D agreement. For studies involving the NHS/HSC, these should be marked by the sponsor as category C and not requiring assessment and sent directly to sites following the instructions above. These should be implemented at sites on the date specified by the sponsor. 

As the situation progresses, we can work with you to submit an amendment to extend the study to make-up the shortfall in recruitment and delivery if required and JRES can discuss this with the funder at that point to ensure they are agreeable to this. 

Can I continue to set-up new sites for an existing study? 

No, the JRES will not be able to sign any new contracts for participating sites at this time. The is to support other healthcare organisations manage during this time. The JRES will can continue the set-up process at sites up until this point (including negotiating contracts), but please be aware that sites’ scope to assess capacity and capability to deliver the trial will likely be diminished due to the COVID-19 outbreak. 

Can we still continue with Site Initiation Visits (SIVs), Site Feasibility Visits and or monitoring visits from external sponsors for studies that would recruit when we return to normal service? 

No, we must limit the number of visitors onsite for non-essential reasons. For that purpose, no external researchers and or sponsors should be permitted onsite in line with the St Georges visitor restriction policy. In addition, where source data verification is required for monitoring, it is not possible to remotely allow access to external sponsors for data protection purposes.  

I want to submit an amendment for my study, can I still do this? 

We do not know how long the HRA will be accepting amendments and there is likely to be a significant delay in the approvals process. For now, you should follow the normal process and make contact with your Research Governance & Facilitation Officer to review the amendment prior to submission. 

How do I make a change to how or when patients are seen to avoid the risk of exposing patients to COVID-19 or to reduce burden on clinical services? 

If the changes are thought to reduce the risk to COVID-19 exposure by changing on-site visits to remote visits, then this should be handled as a non-substantial amendment (category C) that does not require HRA approval and can be implemented immediately. Please contact your Research Governance & Facilitation Officer to ensure you follow the correct process before implementation and any such change should not increase the burden on Trust staff or resources. 

If such a change could increase the risk to patients (e.g. increased safety concerns due to lack of on-site visits and assessments) then this should be handled as a substantial amendment. Please contact your Research Governance & Facilitation Officer in JRES. 

It may be appropriate to record if the change might affect the study data, for example subjective interview responses.

Where can I find further information? 

The official guidance from the HRA can be found here: 

COVID-19: Guidance for sponsors, sites and researchers (v2.1 20 March 2020)

The situation is changing rapidly, so please check the most recent HRA guidance and get in touch with your JRES Research Governance & Facilitation Officer to determine the most appropriate course of action.  

JRES contact details  

You can find contact details for the JRES Team here: JRES contact details

Can I still come in to do experiments now that the University is closed?

 No, the government has advised that everyone must stay at home and work from home. 

Only priority projects on Covid-19 (as agreed with the Deputy Principal (Research and Enterprise)) will be ongoing now that the University is closed.  

During this time only skeleton staff will be present on site for essential maintenance/support.

For those staff on site, performing essential Covid-19 research, they must follow the guidelines for lone and out of hours working  and sign in with Security on entry to the university and sign out when they leave. 

If you are in the laboratory on your own, you must follow the guidelines for lone and out of hours working and implement the buddy system to ensure someone knows where you are.

It is essential that you read and follow the risk/COSSH assessment guidelines associated with the protocols you are using in the lab and familiarise yourself with the processes/equipment needed to minimise risks.  You should also make sure you clearly understand the waste disposal processes and check that they are available.

You need to ensure that you know what to do in the event of an emergency, fire, chemical and biological spills and how to report incidents and accidents.

Further information can be found on the Health Safety and Environment webpages.

What happens if I feel ill when I come into work?

If you are working on a priority project and start feeling ill on the way into work you must not enter the university or hospital grounds, and if you are showing any signs of COVID-19 infection you should go home immediately and self-isolate for at least 7 days. Please see NHS guidance on self-isolation.

If you fall ill whilst at work with symptoms of COVID-19 infection you should phone security on (X 0909) who will guide you to an isolation room where you will be provided with protective equipment and can make arrangements to be taken home to self-isolate as above.

 

What do I do in the event of an incident or accident on the University site?

All staff should follow the guidance contained in the relevant health and safety policies and procedures which can be found on the Health & Safety webpage.

In the event of fire you must leave the building immediately by the nearest exit.

For other accidents and incidents, you should contact your Line Manager for advice and inform Security Control on 0909 or 0208 725 0909. You can ask Security to contact the SHE Manager or SHE Advisor. 

If you require first aid you should call security on 0909 or 0208 725 0909. Many of the security staff are first aid trained and can provide assistance.  If the injury is severe, you should go to the Emergency Department in St. James Wing of the hospital.

When you leave the site you must notify your Line manager and sign out at the Security Control Centre.

You or your Line Manager must complete the RIDDOX accident / incident report available at this link.

Sickness, absence and self-isolation procedures

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I have symptoms and think I might have Covid-19 / I have been diagnosed with Covid-19. What should I do to let the University know?
If you are feeling unwell with either:     
  • a new continuous cough    

  • a high temperature    

You must stay at home and self-isolate.  

Anyone with symptoms should stay at home for at least 7 days.  

If you live with other people, then all household members should stay at home for at least 14 days, to avoid spreading the infection outside the home. 

If anyone in your home gets symptoms, they should stay at home for 7 days from the day their symptoms start. Even if it means they're at home for longer than 14 days. 

Further information on self-isolating can be found here 

Staff should notify their manager, who can record this as a sickness absence in MyWorkplace.   

‘Covid-19 Unconfirmed’ and ‘Covid-19 Confirmed’ have now been added as an additional sickness category in MyWorkplace and managers should record the absence appropriately.   

Managers should also let HR know.  

As of 23 March the guidance for everyone in the UK is as below:

Stay at home   
  • Only go outside for food, health reasons or essential work. 

  • Stay 2 metres (6ft) away from other people. 

  • Wash your hands as soon as you get home.  

Further NHS guidance can be found here.
I live with someone who has symptoms of Covid-19. What should I do?

If someone in your household is displaying symptoms of Covid-19, you must stay at home for 14 days from the day the first person has had symptoms.  

If you are well enough to work, follow the guidance on self-isolation below.  

If you yourself become unwell, follow the guidance below on sickness. 

I am a staff member, what do I do if a student needs to self-isolate or is diagnosed with coronavirus?
Please email Students Services on coronavirusconcern@sgul.ac.uk.  
Why has the advice on self-isolation changed from 14 days to 7 days?

The 14 day period is for those who have had exposure to a confirmed case but have not shown symptoms. The 14 days represents the potential incubation period (the time it takes for symptoms to show if you have been infected).

Most people will no longer be likely to transmit the virus 7 days after the onset of symptoms. You do not need to call NHS111 to go into self-isolation. If your symptoms persist past 7 days you should contact NHS 111 online at 111.nhs.uk. If you have no internet access, you should call NHS 111.

I am a member of staff and need to self-isolate even though I feel well enough to work. What arrangements should I make?

If you have been in contact with a confirmed case of Covid-19, you should self-isolate and use the NHS 111 online coronavirus service.  

You should call your manager and inform them that you are self-isolating and the reason for your self-isolation.  If self-isolating we would normally require that, if you are well enough to do so, you should work from home. You should discuss arrangements for working from home with your line manager, who may, if necessary, ask you to undertake alternative duties from home (eg if you cannot access a specific system at home). As the majority of staff are now working from home, arrangements may already be in place. 

If you self-isolate and your work cannot be undertaken at home you should discuss this with your line manager. In some cases, you may be asked to undertake alternative duties from home.  

If it is not possible to work from home during self-isolation this will be treated as sick leave and should be recorded as such. A period of self-isolation of up to 14 calendar days will be paid according to the usual sick pay entitlements. Payment for a period of self-isolation of more than 14 days, where the individual is not unwell, will be at the discretion of St George’s.  

More information on self-isolation is available on the here.  

At the end of a period of self-isolation you should contact the Occupational Health Unit on 020 8725 1633/1622/0460 to confirm that you may return to work. 

As a staff member who is self-isolating, what leave should I take? 

If self-isolation is required and it is possible to work from home this will be considered as a normal working day. If it is not possible to work from home during self-isolation this will be treated as sick leave and should be recorded as such. A period of self-isolation of up to 14 calendar days will be paid according to the usual sick pay entitlements. Payment for a period of self-isolation of more than 14 days, where the individual is not unwell, will be at the discretion of St George’s. 

Do I need a Fit Note (doctor's note) to self-isolate?

No, we will waive the requirement for a Fit Note for more than 7 calendar days in these exceptional circumstances. However, you should refer to the government’s advice on self-isolation and explain to your manager why self-isolation is required. The University may require evidence that you have been instructed to self-isolate for up to 14 days. Evidence of medical advice for self-isolation of more than 14 calendar days would be expected. 

If I self-isolate, will I be paid?

If self-isolation is required and it is possible to work from home this will be considered as a normal working day. If it is not possible to work from home during self-isolation this will be treated as sick leave and should be recorded as such. A period of self-isolation of up to 14 calendar days will be paid according to the usual sick pay entitlements. Payment for a period of self-isolation of more than 14 days, where the individual is not unwell, will be at the discretion of St George’s. 

I am the line manager of a member of staff who needs to self-isolate or has been diagnosed.  What should I do and how do I record the absence?

If self-isolating, discuss whether the individual is well enough to work from home and what remote working may be possible. If necessary, you may need to ask the individual to undertake alternative duties. You might need to make arrangements for a laptop to be delivered to them, although face-to-face contact with the individual should not be made. As the majority of staff are now working from home arrangements may already be in place.h.  

If an individual is self-isolating because they have symptoms of Covid-19, you should record their sickness absence in MyWorkplace, assuming that they are not well enough to work. Two new sickness absence categories have been created “Covid-19 Confirmed” and “Covid-19 Unconfirmed”. In most cases they will likely need to be recorded as “Covid-19 Unconfirmed”. Should the employee be tested and confirmed to have Covid-19 please use the “Covid-19 Confirmed” absence reason.  

However, if an employee is self-isolating but is well and is working from home, there is no need to record their absence as they continue to work. 

If an individual is away from work because they are unwell and unable to work but do not have symptoms of Covid-19, you should record their sickness on MyWorkplace in the usual way, using one of the existing sickness categories.

 

You should also ask the individual if they require additional assistance, for example to support them with the emotional impact of self-isolation or with practical assistance. You may wish to direct the individual to our Employee Assistance Programme (assist@cic-eap.co.uk), which can provide support and counselling or direct the individual to the Counselling Service (020 8725 3628, counselling@sgul.ac.uk).  

 

My child's school is closed, what do I need to do and know?

We recognise that school closures are bringing additional challenges for staff around child-care. St George’s wants to support staff to balance their work and childcare responsibilities during this very unusual time. 

Please discuss your working arrangements and workload with your manager. You may need to work flexibly or flex your hours in order to manage both, for example adjusting your hours so that you can work when your childcare needs are less or focusing on business-critical ac-tivities. 

If you need to concentrate solely on childcare you may wish to consider taking annual leave. In some cases special leave may apply, as outlined in the special leave policy

We will do everything we can to accommodate your situation. Please speak to your line manager and rest assured that you will continue to receive your normal pay (as will all St George's staff).

I was planning to go away on holiday but it has been cancelled at late notice due to travel restrictions as a result of the Covid-19 pandemic. Can I cancel my annual leave and book it at another time?

Your manager would have to approve any leave cancellation and may not feel able to do so, particularly if only a few days’ notice has been given – in general we would expect you to give as many days’ notice of cancellation as the length of the leave (eg 2 weeks’ notice to cancel a 2 week holiday).  

At present we would strongly advise against cancelling leave. The working time directive stipulates that all staff must take 28 days leave, including Bank Holidays, during the year until end July 2020 (pro-rated for part-time workers).  Even if we can’t go away we will all still need a break during this time. 

Given the current global uncertainty it is not clear that individuals will be able to rebook holidays by end July and there is, therefore, no guarantee that leave will be able to be taken prior to the end of the leave year if it is cancelled now.

Only the equivalent of one working week (dependent on your working pattern) can be carried forward to the 2020/21 leave year and must be used by end October 2020.

Will there be any changes to the annual leave year in light of the Covid-19 outbreak?

No, the leave year will continue to run until end-July. As with previous years, you are able to carry over the equivalent of one working week (dependent on your working pattern) to the 2020/21 leave year, which must be used by end October 2020.

You are encouraged to continue to take annual leave during this time in order to ensure you get a break from work and to meet the working time regulations which require all staff must take 28 days leave, including Bank Holidays, during the year until end July 2020 (pro-rated for part-time workers).

The government has eased restrictions on the carry-over of statutory leave, can I now carry forward more than a week’s annual leave?

For the majority of university staff, it should still be possible to take your leave this leave year and therefore you would not be able to carry forward more than one weeks’ leave (dependent on working pattern) in to the 2020/21 leave year. The University’s policy is that you should continue to take annual leave during this time in order to ensure you get a break from work.

The government’s change is predominantly aimed at key workers who are unable to take their leave due to their work in tackling the Covid-19 epidemic. For the University this is likely to relate mainly to clinical academics who have had to increase their hours working with the NHS, or individuals involved in Covid-19 research. In such cases you should speak to your manager about leave carry over. HR will need to be informed of any agreements you reach.

Am I able to attend conferences?

According to current guidance to avoid non-essential travel and mass gatherings, staff should not be attending conferences. 

Can I accept an elective student to join my group?
No. Electives are voluntary activities and in the current unique circumstances we must assume we may not have staff available to offer students the support they need on a placement at St George’s.
I am a staff member or student affiliated with the Joint Faculty. Which guidance should I follow – St George’s, University of London advice or Kingston University’s?
Staff and students should follow the guidance for whichever site they are usually based at or attended during the day, e.g. if you feel unwell on-site or need to notify other staff of contact with someone diagnosed with Covid-19 while on the St George’s site, this guidance should be followed.   

Finance and pay

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I have a timesheet or an expense claim which needs to go to payroll but am working from home, what do I do?

We understand that in the current situation where the majority of staff are working from home you may not be able to obtain approval signatures for timesheets and expenses in the normal way. Please see below details on how to process these. 

Timesheets: please email these to the approver for them to send to payroll via email with their approval. 

Expenses: We would expect there to be a limited amount of new expenses being incurred at this time as conferences and meetings are generally cancelled and overseas travel is advised against. However, if you do have any which need to be submitted, please follow the instructions below: 

  • The payroll team is now working from home so you are likely to be unable to get the original receipts to payroll. Please hold on to your expense claim and submit once things are back to normal. If this means that you cannot submit your claim within the normal 3-month claim period in the expenses policy, we will extend that on a case by case basis. Where that would put the claim beyond the current end date of a research project, please ensure that your JRES funding officer is made aware. 

  • If waiting until you are back in the building and can physically drop off the expense claim and receipts would create a problem for you due to the value, please contact payroll to discuss on payroll@sgul.ac.uk.


What happens to my pay during this period?

Staff will continue to be paid as normal. Working from home is considered to be a normal working day. St George’s expects staff to be working during this period and managers may ask individuals to undertake alternative duties where necessary. If you have capacity please let your manager know so that they can consider alternative support you can provide to the University.

If staff fall ill, usual sick pay entitlements will apply.

Recruitment

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I'm starting a new job at St George's shortly, can I still start and what do I need to do?

St George’s will continue to employ anybody for whom we have made an offer and agreed a start date. However, if you would like to reconsider your start date, we would be happy to discuss this with you. New starters will likely need to commence work virtually and your new line manager will discuss how to do this and plan the most appropriate induction. Unfortu-nately new starters may not enjoy as comprehensive an induction as would have been the case if they had physically joined and met the team from day one but we will do all we can to ensure that your new job with St George’s goes smoothly.

If a start date has not been agreed yet, then we may discuss with you an alternative start date that is mutually convenient.

I have a role in my team I need to fill, can I still recruit and if so how?

You should give careful consideration to whether recruiting now is the best option. We can expect the current arrangements of working from home and social distancing to continue for some time and it is likely that many potential candidates will defer applying for roles while the current measures are ongoing and it remains uncertain how long they will last.

You also need to consider whether the work the role entails will be required at the same level while the current situation continues. On the other hand, the timeframes for recruitment, including advertising and somebody having to work their notice should also be taken into ac-count. In light of this, you may decide that continuing to recruit is the best option in order to try to fill a role once business as usual can resume. HR will be monitoring the situation and will discuss with managers whether recruitment at this time is the best option.

If you do decide to recruit you will most likely need to undertake a remote interview. This could be undertaken using Microsoft Teams or Skype for business.

Communications and updates

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I’m a member of University staff. Should I send out my own communications about coronavirus, or update my local web pages with information? Where should I direct any enquiries?

All communications should go through the Communications team to ensure communications across the University are consistent and in-line with the latest Government advice and University policy.  

The Communications team will be keeping in touch with you as the position evolves with any urgent messages and regular updates

The FAQs on the website will continue to be updated regularly. Please refer to these in the first instance for answers to any questions you might have.  There is also an online form you can use to ask any questions not covered in the current advice.

We are aware that some staff are dealing with a high volume of enquiries. If any answers are already covered in the FAQs, please use these in your responses.

Please notify the Communications team about any new questions you are receiving so they can update the FAQs, or if there is information you suggest is covered in the new regular bulletins

The team can be reached on 0208 725 5180 / 1139 or on communications@sgul.ac.uk. Out of office hours, the duty press officer can be reached on 07979 913 141 for advice.   

I’ve been called by the media asking about the University’s preparations / outbreak etc. – what should I do?

Any media enquiries should be directed to the Communications team. Within business hours, the team can be reached on 0208 725 5180 / 1139 or on communications@sgul.ac.uk.  

Out of office hours, the duty press officer can be reached on 07979 913 141 for advice.   

What is the University doing to plan and keep people informed during the current coronavirus outbreak?

The Communications team will be keeping in touch with you as the position evolves with any urgent messages and regular updates

Staff, students, visitors and others who are part of the University’s broader community should refer to www.sgul.ac.uk/Covid-19 for the latest advice. 

Events 

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Can lectures, public events, meetings and conferences still take place?

In line with this Government guidance on 23 March 2020 staff should now work from home where possible and everyone should stop non-essential contact with others.  

Guidance on social distancing can be found here.  

This is a difficult time and may be unsettling and distressing. Please continue to look after your mental health as well as your physical health. Please see the link to ‘MIND’ below which offers some useful suggestions: Coronavirus and your wellbeing

What should I do if I have worries related to Covid-19 (Coronavirus)?  

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I’ve experienced bullying or abuse related to Covid-19 (Coronavirus). Who can I talk to?

St George’s does not tolerate any bullying and harassment of staff. If you think you may have been the subject of any bullying or harassment within the University, you should inform your line manager or HR. You can also contact our Employee Assistance Programme (assist@cic-eap.co.uk), which can provide support and counselling or the Counselling Service (020 8725 3628, counselling@sgul.ac.uk). 

If you have been subject to any bullying or harassment outside of the University, you may also contact the police to report a hate crime. 

What support is available if I am feeling anxious about family or friends who may be affected by the virus? 

If employees or students would like to talk confidentially to someone, St George’s, University of London has a counselling service that can be contacted by email or 020 8725 3625. 

Students can seek advice from a Personal Tutor, Student Union Vice-President (Education and Welfare) or Student Union Welfare Advisor. 

The Confidential Care Employee Assistance Programme will be continuing to provide their telephone service during this time. If you would like to use the service, please follow these instructions:

Email assist@cic-eap.co.uk and include the following information:

  • name
  • organisation
  • contact phone number
  • the best time to receive a return a call (preferably with a 2 hour time window)
  • a brief sentence on the reason for calling.

If you are a member, the British Medical Association provides confidential counselling which is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week on 0330 123 1245. 

Will the Counselling Service continue to offer appointments?

The Counselling Service staff will be continuing to offer sessions remotely.  The booking chart will not be available and there will be no Open Sessions for the moment. 

For staff who already have a named counsellor

Some counsellors are working remotely from the 16 March and will get in touch if you have a session booked. Please contact your named counsellor if you are unsure or have not heard from them. You will need to download Skype for Business onto your computer/laptop or it is possible to have a phone session. All students and staff are entitled to Skype for Business as part of Office 365.

Please contact the counsellor you have been seeing by their individual email address. The counsellors are:

If you have not been to counselling at the SGUL Counselling Service previously

We still want to hear from you. Please send an email to counselling@sgul.ac.uk and we will be in contact as soon as we can to take a referral from you. Please note we are not a crisis service but will check this email at least once a day. 

This is a difficult time and may be unsettling and distressing. Please continue to look after your mental health as well as your physical health. Please see the link to ‘MIND’ below which offers some useful suggestions: Coronavirus and your wellbeing

 

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