COVID-19 Campus Updates

SUNY COVID-19 Daily Tracker

SUNY is tracking testing and positive instances on all 64 campuses with updates posted to the dashboard daily. To view SUNY College of Optometry specific information, select Optometry from the list in the left-hand column after clicking the link above.

Enhanced Surveillance Testing Plan

Effective February 1, 2021 the College will increase the frequency of mandatory surveillance pool testing to a weekly occurrence for anyone who is regularly on campus. This document provides important guidance and details regarding testing.

Returning to Campus: What Students Should Know

This document is to provide SUNY College of Optometry students with a quick reference for key information about the Spring 2021 semester, COVID-19, and returning to campus after the holidays. Email remains the primary form of communication with the campus community.

SUNY Optometry Academic and Campus Operations Continuity Plan (updated January 2021)

The SUNY College of Optometry Campus Ramp-Up Plan has been approved by System Administration. The plan details the College’s strategy for continued operation and increased campus activities for the duration of the COVID-19 public health emergency. The plan is subject to modification based on changing circumstances and any additional guidance which may be issued by the CDC, DOH, SUNY Administration, or other regulatory bodies.

Additional documents and policies for SUNY Optometry:

Download SafeinSight app to complete daily screening (preferred)

Google Play BadgeDownload SafeInsight from the Google Play Store.

Download on the App StoreDownload SafeInsight from the App Store.

Download printable screening form (pdf)

We continue to closely monitor the 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19) public health crisis and have implemented additional cleaning and healthcare protocols. This novel coronavirus is a respiratory tract illness that presents flu-like symptoms including fever, coughing, and shortness of breath.

If you are experiencing any symptoms, please do not visit campus but seek medical attention right away. Call your healthcare provider and alert them of your recent travel history, if you have been in close contact with a person known to have COVID-19 and/or your symptoms. If you are a University Eye Center patient or a campus visitor, kindly reschedule your appointment if you are experiencing symptoms or feel ill.

The following are our guiding principles for decision makingas we develop policies and implement appropriate regulations and guidance:s:

  • The safety and well-being of our students, staff and patients come first;
  • The professional and personal success of our students through the continued delivery of our educational programs with on-time completion is paramount;
  • Maintain the fundamental mission of the College, providing the broadest access to world-class teaching, research and eye care services to the public;
  • Providing quality care for our patients through telehealth and in-person services, while using proper safety equipment and processes;
  • Maintain the essential infrastructure and preparedness needed to ensure we are ready to deliver our educational, research and patient care programs as the conditions around the pandemic change.
  • Ensure flexibility and agility in adapting to changing environmental conditions, balancing the needs of the College’s workforce and students with our patient care obligations to the public.

Campus communications concerning COVID-19 have regularly been distributed to students, faculty, and staff through their email addresses. We are continuing to coordinate our actions and seek guidance from SUNY System Administration, accreditation bodies, and regulatory authorities.

We take all claims of exposure and possible infection of COVID-19 very seriously. We have done our best to remove or prevent any symptomatic persons from being on campus, implemented social distancing (including fewer people present), and increased cleaning. If we have a suspected case of COVID-19 infection or exposure, we will:

  • Ask the individual to remain home or leave campus immediately.
  • Immediately disinfect the area(s) with which this person may have had in contact.
  • Follow all Department of Health guidelines, including any instructions they provide when we call for guidance.
  • Ask non-symptomatic individuals to remain off-campus in self-quarantine for the time period recommended by the Department of Health.
  • Require that symptomatic people remain away from campus until all symptoms have cleared and their doctor has indicated they may return to work.
  • Follow DOH guidelines, and inform anyone who was in direct contact with the diagnosed individual of their potential exposure.

We are taking all reasonable measures to ensure the health and well-being of our community, and we will continue to keep you updated as circumstances change.

Travel Advisory Policy

The Travel Advisory Policy is updated regularly as NYS executive orders change and other guidance is provided. Please read the travel advisory policy for details.

Students should check their SUNY Optometry email for additional guidance from Academic and Student Affairs.

Key Campus Requirements

Everyone is REQUIRED to wear a face covering over their nose and mouth while in the building, especially in any shared or common spaces such as the lobby, waiting rooms, hallways, etc.

Upon entering, a health and thermal screenings are conducted in the lobby. Anyone who displays symptoms, has a fever of 100 degrees or higher, feels ill or has been recently exposed to COVID-19 must remain home or leave campus immediately.

Rooms and spaces have reduced capacity; follow all signage.

Maintain social distancing at least 6 feet apart and limiting time spent with any other individual. Follow all posted signage and cues.

Refraining from handshakes, high fives, and other person-to-person contact with a no-contact zone policy to limit the spread of germs.

We are taking all reasonable measures to ensure the health and well-being of our community, and we will continue to keep you updated as circumstances change.

Patients and Visitors:

The University Eye Center (UEC)has returned to normal operating hours: Monday, Wednesday, and Thursday from 8:30 am – 7:30 pm, Tuesday from 1:00 pm – 7:30 pm, Friday and Saturday from 8:30 am – 4:30 pm. Telehealth appointments remain available. Please contact us at 212-938-4001 if you have any questions.

Anyone experiencing symptoms including fever, cough, or shortness of breath or who is feeling ill will be asked to reschedule their appointment and not enter the building.

Social Events and Activities:

Effective Friday, April 1 activities and events that are not essential to the academic and clinical program are suspended including social events, student club activities, colloquia, etc. until further notice. This will be periodically re-evaluated and adjusted as necessary.

Practice Good Health Habits:

We ask that all campus community members and visitors practice good health habits to prevent the spread of respiratory diseases as recommended by the CDC and WHO:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick.
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth.
  • Stay home when you are sick.
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Follow CDC’s recommendations for using a facemask:
    • To reduce the spread of COVID-19, CDC recommends that people wear cloth face coverings in public settings when around people outside of their household, especially when other social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty.
    • For information about handwashing, see CDC’s Handwashing website.

Additional Resources: