Current ArrangementsMeasures of the university for protection against the coronavirus
25 November 2022
Protection measures at Heidelberg University
*Update* The university has decided on the operating framework for a safe winter semester on campus.
Similar to the last two semesters, activities in the 2022/2023 winter semester will, in principle, take place on campus. The university will supplement the in-person classes with online formats, hybrid courses, the digital provision of materials relevant to examinations, and other online support, in order to guarantee the continuing participation of all students.
If it is not possible to maintain the minimum distance inside the buildings, all degree-related lectures/classes, exams etc. must respect the following procedure
- Students are urgently recommended to wear a medical mask or an FFP2 mask
- Wearing at least a surgical mask is mandatory for all other persons present, including teachers, if they cannot maintain the minimum distance inside the university buildings
Apart from degree-related activities, all those present in all areas of the university must wear at least a surgical mask if they cannot maintain the minimum distance inside the buildings.
The following arrangements at Heidelberg University take account, in particular, of the Coronavirus Ordinances of the State of Baden-Württemberg against the spread of SARS-CoV-2 in their respective latest versions.
*Update* The crucial key to a progressive return to customary university routines continues to be a achieving the maximum rate of vaccination on the part of all concerned.
Accordingly, in cooperation with the Student Services Organisation (Studierendenwerk), Heidelberg University will offer weekly vaccination opportunities, initially until 13 December 2022. These are available to all members of the university, particularly for students, and for employees and their children from the age of 12. These and further vaccination drives will be publicised on the university website.
Furthermore, many family doctors offer appointments for boosters, and mobile vaccination teams operate from time to time at decentralised locations in Heidelberg and environs. Staff members can obtain leave to attend vaccination appointments during working hours.
Arrangements For Lectures/Classes And Events
As a general rule, keeping a distance is recommended inside buildings. It is possible though to abstain from observing the minimum distance at university events if this is necessary for service operations or for conducting the event, as long as a mask is worn the whole time. Separate arrangements have applied to degree-related events since 3 April 2022.
In all university premises, those present are still obliged to wear at least a surgical mask if they cannot respect the minimum distance of 1.5 meters to each other. To students alone, this rule applies only in the form of an urgent recommendation. The university will continue to make the necessary surgical masks available to employees free of charge.
The occupational safety department is likewise available to supervisors and employees as their first point of contact if they have queries about using surgical masks or FFP2 masks and updating their risk assessments in this respect. It is generally recommended to limit the time spent wearing these masks to what is absolutely necessary and to take advantage of possible breaks to remove them.
There is no longer any 3G requirement at the university. Consequently, no checking of vaccination documents is required in buildings or in university classes and events. Moreover, this is also no longer permissible on grounds of data protection.
Further General Arrangements
The university’s guide to occupational safety continues to apply to on-campus activities; it includes coronavirus hygiene rules and an aid to action on the topic of COVID-19. Consequently, it remains unchanged that the necessary measures for the respective venues and rooms are based on the risk assessments of the facilities. The latter must be regularly checked, updated and supplemented. In rooms without automatic ventilation, it is still generally recommended to open windows every 15 minutes for five minutes, ideally with additional cross ventilation. The department of occupational safety is available for any queries.
Those responsible for holding the respective on-campus classes or events ensure that the valid protective measures contained in the guide are observed.
*Update* University staff who work at least one day a week on campus are offered one rapid Covid test per week free of charge. Staff who work at least two days a week on campus and
- are in frequent contact with the public and/or with students, or
- whose work situation does not allow the regular maintaining of the minimum distance
can avail themselves of two rapid Covid tests per week. The management of the respective institute or facility can order the rapid antigen tests from the central procurement offices.
It continues to be inadmissible for institutes and facilities, along with organisers of university and non-university events, to issue their own test certificates. However, numerous public test offers of the City of Heidelberg are still available for the issuing of qualified test certificates.
Further important information
Arrangements on telework
*Update* As of 1 September 2022 the Temporary Home Office option has been replaced by the possibility of agreements on telework.
The University Computing Centre can be helpful in setting up the IT infrastructure (IT Support: Tel. +49 6221 54-117). Every procedure will apply subject to the provisions of the respective Coronavirus Ordinances. Detailed information is available on the webpage of the Human Resources Division.
Central information service in the university administration
Besides the familiar communication channels, the university administration has set up a Corona Service Portal for researchers and staff. It replies to questions and concerns in the context of the corona challenges or refers them to the internal contact persons responsible.
Telephone availability on 06221 54 19191
Mon to Thurs 8am to 4pm
Friday 8am to 3pm
Here the general legal conditions apply around the issues of occupational safety and hygiene, as well as access and attendance arrangements.
The University Library and its branches are open on a regular basis. Using university libraries is oriented to the above conditions of the latest Coronavirus Ordinance and the local situation. Please consult the websites of the respective libraries for future special arrangements.
All digital offerings of the University Library continue to be available as usual. All members of the university may order media from the University Library for postal delivery (the cost of postage being covered by the person placing the order). In addition, the library has enormously expanded its collection of e-books for students and teachers. Many publishing houses are supporting Heidelberg University during the coronavirus pandemic by activating additional or so far unlicensed content.
The University Archive is open to the public. The 3G obligation no longer applies.
The University Computing Centre has compiled the currently available digital services on a website and more are to be added as fast as possible.
Business trips within Germany are possible. Please check, however, whether they can be postponed or replaced by digital formats and events. The institutes/facilities decide themselves whether to approve a business trip. Legal provisions at the local level and during the trip must be observed. If university events – of whatever kind – are held outside the campus, they are subject to the hygiene and distancing rules of the current Coronavirus Ordinance of the State of Baden-Württemberg, unless there are stricter requirements at the local level, in which case the latter will apply.
Business trips abroad are generally only approved for countries for which the Federal Foreign Office has not issued a travel warning. In such cases, the above-mentioned rules apply in the same way as for travel within Germany. This applies to students, doctoral candidates, administrative and academic staff, and also to visiting scholars. However, there is currently no Covid-related travel warning about travel in any country.
Returning from abroad
The Coronavirus Entry Ordinance in its latest version is applicable when entering or returning to the Federal Republic of Germany.
The supervisors of employees who have to self-isolate at home under the Ordinance will notify the Human Resources Division about the quarantine ordered by the public authority and likewise when the employees return to work.
Cases of suspicion and recommendations for behaviour
What should we do if a member of the university presents typical coronavirus symptoms, tests positive or had contact with an infected person?
*Update* With symptoms that could indicate an infection with SARS-CoV-2 we should isolate at home and obtain advice on the phone from our family doctor or the medical on-call service (tel. 116 117). Everyone is still strongly recommended not to go to a doctor’s office or emergency room without a prior arrangement. Since 16 November 2022, those who have tested positive for Covid 19 are no longer obliged to go into quarantine at home, as long as they continually wear a surgical or FFP2 mask for five days when in contact with other people. This also applies in the open air when it is not possible to observe the minimum distance. The obligation for the infected persons themselves to inform potentially close contact persons remains unchanged. The latter are recommended to reduce their personal contacts as far as possible for a period of five days.
Initial assistance for an infection risk assessment and orientation regarding rules of behaviour is available from the information issued by the Federal Centre for Health Education (BZgA) and the Covid hotline +49 6221 522-1881 (Mon-Fri 8am-12 noon). Outside these times adults should ring the infection emergency room on +49 6221 56-8626. The emergency room of the Center for Pediatric and Adolescent Medice is responsible for questions concerning children and young people. It can be reached by calling +49 6221 56-4823.
When infections occur within the university, those affected can turn to a central team for advice and support.
Phone: 06221 54-19191
What can every individual do?
All members of Heidelberg University are required to follow the hygiene rules as issued, for example, by the Federal Centre for Health Education for educational institutions. By way of precautionary health protection, please be careful to observe the rules for good hand hygiene and coughing and sneezing etiquette, and keep your distance to other people. Rooms must be aired appropriately.