Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine is closely monitoring the 2019 novel coronavirus-COVID-19. Guidelines have been put in place by the New Mexico Department of Health and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Burrell College of Osteopathic Medicine is monitoring the situation and is actively planning for contingencies. Please continue to check this page for frequent updates based on guidance from the NM Department of Health and the CDC.
Burrell College Campus COVID-19 Cases as of 4/16/2021
Total number of Burrell College students, faculty, and staff that reported a positive test result and still in the isolation period. Active does not mean symptomatic.
Total number of Burrell College students, faculty, and staff that have tested positive for COVID-19 since March 2020.
Based on updated information published by the NMDoH on August 28, 2020, and to align with State and local guidelines that include time- and symptom-based considerations for resuming work following COVID-19 illness, BCOM will adopt the following addendum to its existing guidelines for faculty, staff, and students to resume work/learning activities after testing positive for COVID-19 as an alternative to requiring 2 negative COVID-19 tests 24 hours apart before re-entry:
Ending Self-Isolation if You Had COVID-19
- For those with minimal/moderate symptoms and no severe immunosuppression1:
- At least 1 day (24 hours) has passed without a fever (and without the use of fever-reducing medications) and your symptoms have improved; AND,
- At least 10 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
- Release to resume work/class furnished by your healthcare professional or NMDoH
- For those with severe COVID-19 illness – you were hospitalized in an intensive care unit with or without mechanical ventilation (“severe illness”) – or have severe immunosuppression1 you may end your self-isolation after:
- At least 1 day (24 hours) has passed without a fever (and without the use of fever-reducing medications) and your symptoms have improved; AND,
- At least 20 days have passed since symptoms first appeared.
- Release to resume work/class furnished by a licensed healthcare provider
If you tested positive for COVID-19 and never developed any symptoms, you can end your self-isolation 10 days after the date your test specimen was collected that resulted in your positive test. You will need to produce a release to return from a licensed healthcare provider.
If you tested positive for COVID-19 and have a severe immunocompromising1 condition without symptoms, you should wait at least 20 days after the date your test specimen was collected that resulted in your positive test before ending your self-isolation.
1 Severe immunosuppression includes being on chemotherapy for cancer, untreated HIV infection with CD4 T lymphocyte count <200, combined primary immunodeficiency disorder, and receipt of prednisone >20 mg/day for more than 14 days. Other factors, such as advanced age, diabetes mellitus, or end-stage renal disease, may pose a much lower degree of immunocompromise and not clearly affect decisions about duration of isolation.
The New Mexico Department of Health recommends that non-essential travel be postponed. As a condition of entry into the building, you must certify that you have not traveled to New Mexico from a point of origin outside of NM with the last 14 days.
Please see amendments to the travel and quarantine executive order from the State of New Mexico: https://cv.nmhealth.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/Executive-Order-2020-056.pdf
The College will adhere to the travel restrictions stated by the New Mexico Department of Health. Please see the following link https://cv.nmhealth.org/travel-recommendations/ for most up-to-date travel information. If documentation is required to return, please provide the proper documentation to the Office of Student Affairs if you are a student, and to the Office of Human Resources if you are an employee
What should I do if I have a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, symptoms associated with COVID-19, or have potential exposure to someone with confirmed COVID-19
- Contact HR and stay home
- For Employees – Telework Guidelines (COVID-19 Related)
- 5.15.2020 Employee Communication – Phase I Re-Opening
- 5.13.2020 For Employees – Town Hall – Re-Opening Preparation PDF | Video
- Families First Coronavirus Response Act
What should I do if I have a confirmed diagnosis of COVID-19, symptoms associated with COVID-19, or has potential exposure to someone with confirmed COVID-19
- Contact the Office of Student Affairs for Year 1 and 2; Contact the Office of Clinical Education for Year 3 and 4 AND stay home
- Complete an Incident Report: https://bcomnm.org/incident-report/
- Students are required to follow the guidelines of their local health department regarding isolation/quarantine/testing while recognizing the clinical rotation site protocol.
Office of Admissions
For admission requirements and provisions affected by COVID-19, please see: https://bcomnm.org/covid19-admissions/
Office of Financial Aid
Office of Financial Aid staff are operating remotely and maintaining continuity to serve and process aid for our students. If a student has been financially impacted by COVID-19, please consider reaching out to the Office of Financial Aid to discuss options and resources: https://bcomnm.org/students/office-of-financial-aid/
All employees/students/visitors are required to wear an appropriate face covering when not alone in a private office. This includes hallways, restrooms, instructional spaces, and other common areas. Face coverings can be medical grades masks, cloth mask (homemade is OK), or other covering as recommended by the NMDOH.
- All employees and students are required to utilize the key card readers to access the building
What if I identify myself as sick while in a College facility?
- Isolate to the nearest room and stay in the room
- Contact security immediately at 575-674-2299 who will contact Human Resources for employees and Student Affairs for students.
- The Office of Compliance or Assistant Vice-President of Administration will facilitate the individual’s exit from the building.
- Contact tracing and cleaning will occur after individual has left the building.
There is currently no vaccine to prevent coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19). The best way to prevent illness is to avoid being exposed to this virus. However, as a reminder, CDC always recommends everyday preventive actions to help prevent the spread of respiratory diseases, including:
- 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.
- Cover your mouth and nose with a cloth face cover when around others. Cloth face coverings should not be placed on young children under age 2, anyone who has trouble breathing, or is unconscious, incapacitated or otherwise unable to remove the mask without assistance. (Source: CDC’s Use of Cloth Face Coverings )
- Medical Quality Facemasks are crucial for health workers and people who are taking care of someone in close settings (at home or in a health care facility).
- 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.
Source: CDC’s Prevention and Treatment
Follow Five Steps to Wash Your Hands the Right Way
Washing your hands is easy, and it’s one of the most effective ways to prevent the spread of germs. Clean hands can stop germs from spreading from one person to another and throughout an entire community—from your home and workplace to childcare facilities and hospitals.
Follow these five steps every time.
- Wet your hands with clean, running water (warm or cold), turn off the tap, and apply soap.
- Lather your hands by rubbing them together with the soap. Lather the backs of your hands, between your fingers, and under your nails.
- Scrub your hands for at least 20 seconds. Need a timer? Hum the “Happy Birthday” song from beginning to end twice.
- Rinse your hands well under clean, running water.
- Dry your hands using a clean towel or air dry them.
Source: CDC’s Handwashing Information
Hand Hygiene for Healthcare Providers
The Core Infection Prevention and Control Practices for Safe Care Delivery in All Healthcare Settings recommendations of the Healthcare Infection Control Practices Advisory Committee (HICPAC) include the following strong recommendations for hand hygiene in healthcare settings.
Healthcare personnel should use an alcohol-based hand rub or wash with soap and water for the following clinical indications:
- Immediately before touching a patient
- Before performing an aseptic task (e.g., placing an indwelling device) or handling invasive medical devices
- Before moving from work on a soiled body site to a clean body site on the same patient
- After touching a patient or the patient’s immediate environment
- After contact with blood, body fluids, or contaminated surfaces
- Immediately after glove removal
Healthcare facilities should:
- Require healthcare personnel to perform hand hygiene in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations
- Ensure that healthcare personnel perform hand hygiene with soap and water when hands are visibly soiled
- Ensure that supplies necessary for adherence to hand hygiene are readily accessible in all areas where patient care is being delivered
- Before you begin cleaning your laptop, it must be turned off and unplugged from the power cord and all attachments (dock, mouse, keyboard, etc).
- If you use any wipes/cloths to clean your device, they should -barely- be damp. The wipes/cloths should not drip any liquid if wrung out.
- Alcohol wipes may not be used to clean screens, but can be used for other parts of the device.
- There are many wipes built specifically for electronics that can be used on the go, they can be found in most stores.
- Device Specific Cleaning Advice can be found on most manufacture’s websites: Apple, Dell, HP, Lenovo, Microsoft.
How to properly care for your safety eye-wear provided to you by Burrell:
- Store eyewear in a dry area at room temperature and sheltered from sunlight.
- Eyewear must be transported with precaution, inside it’s original packaging.
- Avoid shocks and falls of heavy objects on the eyewear.
- Lenses are to be cleaned with soapy water or rinse regularly, dry with a soft cloth. Never clean when dry or use abrasive materials to clean.
- Disinfect regularly using household or medical disinfectant, and thoroughly rinse. Never clean when dry or use abrasive materials to clean.
Question: Why can someone recover from COVID-19 in 12 Days, but someone who has been exposed to COVID-19 has to quarantine for 14 Days?
Answer: Per the NMDOH Policies for the Prevention and Control of COVID-19 in New Mexico, the reason isolation and quarantine have different time requirements is because there is a difference between how long someone is infectious and might spread the virus to others (12 days total) and the incubation period – how long it can take for the disease to appear after someone has had close contact with someone with COVID-19 (14 days). That is also the reason why case investigators go back 14 days from the date someone developed symptoms to determine how they may have become infected.
Question: What does it mean to be in “close contact” with someone with COVID-19 who is in their “infectious period”?
Answer: See page 11 of NMDOH Policies for the Prevention and Control of COVID-19 in New Mexico.
Question: What should I do if someone I am in close contact with was exposed to a COVID positive case (example: my spouse was exposed at work and now he/she has to quarantine)?
Answer: There is no required change for you since you were not directly exposed to the COVID positive case. Continue to monitor your health and attend campus activities as normal.
Question: Where can I get tested for COVID-19?
Question: What does Burrell do when someone has been on Burrell campus who tests positive for COVID-19?
Answer: Campus Exposure to COVID-19 Flowchart: Link
Question: What does Quarantine, Self-Isolate, and Potential Exposure mean?
Quarantine: used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others. Quarantine helps prevent spread of disease that can occur before a person knows they are sick or if they are infected with the virus without feeling symptoms. People in quarantine should stay home, separate themselves from others, monitor their health, and follow directions from their state or local health department.
Self-Isolate: used to separate people infected with the virus (those who are sick with COVID-19 and those with no symptoms) from people who are not infected. People who are in isolation should stay home until it’s safe for them to be around others.
Potential Exposure: household contact or having close contact within 6 feet of an individual with confirmed or suspected COVID-19. The timeframe for having contact with an individual includes the period of time of 48 hours before the individual became symptomatic or received a positive COVID-19 test (if asymptomatic). The College is following NMDOH exposure definition: less than 6 feet and more than 3 minutes.
Question: I have been fully vaccinated, are there any changes for me with COVID procedures?
Answer: Yes, the quarantine requirements after a close-contact exposure are different. If you meet the criteria below, you are exempt from the 14-day quarantine:
∙ Are fully vaccinated (ie., ≥ 2 weeks following receipt of the second dose in a 2-dose series, or ≥ 2 weeks following receipt of one dose of a single-dose vaccine)
∙ Are within 3 months following the receipt of the last dose in the series
∙ Have remained asymptomatic since the current COVID-19 exposure
If you meet all three criteria above you are exempt from the mandatory 14-day quarantine.
Question: Can I study on campus?
Answer: Yes, you can book a study room using the following link. Please be sure to follow the guidelines on the reservation page.
Question: What if I don’t have a PCP in Las Cruces and need to see a physician?
Answer: As part of your student fees you can to visit the NMSU Aggie Health and Wellness Center.
Question: What should I do if a student or employee tells me they have tested positive for COVID or have been exposed (less than 6ft and longer than 3 minutes) to COVID-19?
Answer: If the individual informing you is a student, please contact Student Affairs immediately and keep the information confidential. If the individual is an employee, please contact Human Resources and keep the information confidential.
Match Day Update: 2020-03-12 – In an abundance of concern for the health and safety of our students and the College community, we find it necessary to cancel the Match Day festivities previously scheduled for Friday, March 20. In so doing we are joining medical schools around the country in the effort to promote containment of the spread of this novel infection. Match Day results will be made available at 10 am MDT through a Facebook live stream on Facebook.com/bcomNM<. Any student not wishing to have their match result released to the public is asked to please contact the Office of Student Affairs no later than 9 a.m. MDT, Thursday, March 19. Faculty and staff will remain available on campus throughout match week to provide assistance where needed. This announcement does not affect the SOAP process that will still take place the week of March 16, 2020.