Communicable Disease Prevention Plan Communicable Disease Prevention Plan The Columbia College Communicable Disease Prevention Plan is a strategy to reduce transmission of illness on Campus. This plan is considered a living document, will be updated, and enhanced when it is appropriate based on guidance from the health authority or the Provincial Health Officer. It includes measures the College will take to provide a safe and healthy environment and procedures that staff, students, and visitors will follow. Please click the button below to view our Communicable Disease Prevention Plan. Communicable Disease Prevention Plan Contact us Questions about this plan can be directed to: Occupational Health, Safety and Emergency Committee Email: [email protected] Government Updates Federal health officials urge Canadians to wear face masks indoors and continue following other public health precautions during a COVID-19 update on November 10, 2022. COVID-19 will continue to spread at different levels in our communities, and outbreaks will still occur. Masks are one of the most effective individual public health measures that we can use to protect ourselves and others from COVID-19. When layered with other public health measures, a well-constructed, well-fitting and properly worn mask can help prevent you from: getting COVID-19 they reduce the amount of infectious respiratory particles you inhale spreading COVID-19 to others they contain the infectious respiratory particles you produce if you’re infected, even if you don’t have symptoms COVID-19: Individual public health measures Starting November 17, 2022, the BC CDC directs people with symptoms who test positive for COVID-19 should stay home until their fever has resolved and they feel well enough to participate in daily activities. Find more information here. On August 25, the Canadian government has announced that flexibilities to allow international students to study online from overseas and qualify for Post-Graduate Work Permit has been extended until August 31, 2023 International students studying online from abroad or who submit a study permit application no later than August 31, 2022, will continue to be able to complete up to 100% of their program online without affecting their PGWP eligibility. As a result, in response to this new update, Columbia College will be offering a limited number of online Flex courses (delivered without a specified fix time) for students who are still waiting for the approval of their study permit applications. For more information, please read here. Upon your entry to Canada by air or at a land border crossing, you may have to complete an arrival COVID-19 molecular test. You’ll complete your arrival test with an approved test provider. Your test provider is based on where you entered the country. If you have to do an arrival test, you must contact the test provider for instructions on where and when to complete your test. Your test should be completed by the end of the next calendar day. The arrival test is free. For more information, please read here. Effective April 1, 2022, pre-entry tests will no longer be required for fully vaccinated travellers entering Canada by land, air and water. Until then, passengers are to follow the pre-entry test requirements. Travellers must still use ArriveCan before and after April 1. For more information on the requirement, please read here. Government of Canada is re-imposing new testing requirements on all travellers coming from outside of Canada except the US and adding 3 countries to the travel ban Canada is reviewing its vaccine booster strategy, adding new countries to the list of nations subjected to federal travel restrictions, and is imposing new testing requirements on all air travellers coming from outside of Canada with the exception of the U.S., due to concerns over the Omicron Variant. Federal ministers and public health officials announced these three new steps on Tuesday during an update on the latest measures Canada is taking in response to the variant of concern. The new testing requirements mean that all air travellers coming from outside Canada, with the exception of the United States, will now need to be tested at the airport when they land in Canada. Those who are vaccinated will have to isolate until they get a negative result, and those who are unvaccinated will continue to have to isolate for the full 14 days and test on day one and day eight of their quarantine. In terms of the travel ban, Nigeria, Malawi and Egypt will join seven other African countries— South Africa, Mozambique, Namibia, Zimbabwe, Botswana, Lesotho and Eswatini Government of Canada announces adjustments to Canada’s border measures (Effective November 30, 2021) Effective November 30, 2021, fully vaccinated individuals with right of entry to Canada who depart and re-enter the country within 72 hours of leaving Canada will not have to present a pre-entry molecular test. This exemption is only for trips originating in Canada taken by fully vaccinated Canadian citizens, permanent residents or individuals registered under the Indian Act, who depart and re-enter by land or by air and can demonstrate that they have been away from Canada for less than 72 hours. This exemption extends to accompanying children under 12, and individuals with medical contraindications to vaccination. Also effective November 30, 2021, Canada will expand the list of COVID-19 vaccines that travellers can receive to be considered fully vaccinated for the purpose of travel to Canada. The list will include Sinopharm, Sinovac and COVAXIN, matching the World Health Organization Emergency Use Listing. Travellers must be fully vaccinated to be able to travel from and within Canada (Effective October 30, 2021) Also effective October 30, travellers departing from Canadian airports, and travellers on VIA Rail and Rocky Mountaineer trains, will be required to be fully vaccinated in order to travel. To allow travellers time to become fully vaccinated, there will be a short transition period where they will be able to travel if they show a valid COVID-19 molecular test within 72 hours of travel as an alternative to providing proof of full vaccination. If travellers have not already started the vaccination process, or do not start soon, they risk not qualifying for travel as of November 30. Read the full announcement here. New measures for travellers in effect as of August 9, 2021 As of August 9, 2021, new measures will be put in place for travellers to Canada, including international students. This includes the following: Eliminating the 3-night government-authorized hotel stay requirement for all air travellers arriving after 12:01 a.m. EDT on August 9, 2021. Until that time, non-vaccinated travellers flying to Canada must complete their 3-night hotel stay while they wait for their on-arrival test results. Implementing a surveillance randomized testing regime for fully vaccinated travellers who qualify for entry to Canada at select airports and land border crossings across Canada. Unvaccinated travellers will continue to be subject to mandatory on-arrival and day 8 testing. Allowing individuals who have recovered from COVID-19, but who continue to test positive, to present a positive COVID-19 molecular test result on a specimen taken 14 to 180 days prior to arrival in Canada as part of the pre-entry test requirements. For more information, please refer to the Government’s official announcement. Government of Canada's first phase to easing border measures for travellers entering Canada Beginning July 5, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. EDT, fully vaccinated travellers who are permitted to enter Canada will not be subject to the federal requirement to quarantine or take a COVID-19 test on day-8. In addition, fully vaccinated travellers arriving by air will not be required to stay at a government-authorized hotel. To be considered fully vaccinated, a traveller must have received the full series of a vaccine — or combination of vaccines — accepted by the Government of Canada at least 14 days prior to entering Canada. Currently, those vaccines are manufactured by Pfizer, Moderna, AstraZeneca/COVISHIELD, and Janssen (Johnson & Johnson). Travellers can receive their vaccine in any country, and must provide documentation supporting their vaccination in English, French or with a certified translation. For these new measures to apply to them, fully vaccinated travellers must still meet all other mandatory requirements, including pre- and on-arrival testing. Continued testing will allow public health experts to keep monitoring positivity rates at the border, monitor for variants of concern, and make further adjustments to border measures as needed. Fully vaccinated travellers must also be asymptomatic, have a paper or digital copy of their vaccination documentation, and provide COVID-19-related information electronically through ArriveCAN prior to arrival in Canada. They must still present a suitable quarantine plan, and be prepared to quarantine, in case it is determined at the border that they do not meet all of the conditions required to be exempt from quarantine. As with all other exempt travellers, they will be required to follow public health measures in place, such as wearing a mask when in public, keep a copy of their vaccine and test results, as well as a list of close contacts for 14 days after entry to Canada. For travellers who are not fully vaccinated, there are no changes to Canada’s current border measures. Read the full update on the official website. Canada to require all arriving air passengers to show negative COVID-19 test beginning on January 7, 2021 The Minister of Transport, the Honourable Marc Garneau, is requiring that, effective January 7, 2021, at 12:01 a.m. EST, all air passengers five years of age or older will be required to test negative for COVID-19 before travelling from another country to Canada. In an effort to curb the continuing coronavirus crisis, Canada will require all air passengers to obtain a negative COVID-19 test three days before arriving in the country. The test must be a PCR test — considered the gold standard of COVID-19 tests. These tests need to be processed in a lab and usually take at least a day to provide results. The new travel rule does not replace the 14-day quarantine period. Violation of quarantine laws can result in up to six months in jail or up to $750,000 in fines. Read the full official announcement here. Public Health Office Order (PHO) on province-wide restrictions Masks are required in order to enter the College and must be worn in all public areas, with some exceptions. On the 3rd floor of the College, the Secondary bubble, masks are encouraged but not required. Anyone entering the building must wear a mask. Security will be checking. Before entering the College, a COVID health assessment must be performed. See the Columbia Safe app. You can read more about the order here. CC Updates Winter 2022 Update (January 17, 2022) From January 24, we are going back to in-person classes for all UT courses (excluding designated flex and synchronous courses).