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General Measures

Since March 11, 2020, when the World Health Organization declared the infectious outbreak of the new SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus and the COVID-19 illness to be a global pandemic, we have experienced an unprecedented health crisis, making it necessary to adopt measures to prevent the spread of this illness.  

Accordingly, and as the health alert continues, it is vital to maintain specific prevention actions to limit the spread of COVID-19 in new outbreaks.

Universidad Carlos III, within its area of responsibility, has adopted the necessary prevention actions measures to limit infection in both work and academic settings.

Hygiene measures

Reinforced hygiene measures is the principal means for preventing and controlling infection.  Our recommendations:

  • Hands should be washed frequently and thoroughly with soap and water or with a hydro-alcoholic solution for at least 40 seconds (including your palm and back of your hand, between your fingers, and under your nails).
  • Cover your mouth and nose with a tissue when you cough or sneeze, disposing of the tissue in the wastebasket.  If you do not have tissues, use the inner part of your elbow, so as not to contaminate your hands. 
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose and mouth.
  • It is especially important to wash your hands after coughing or sneezing or after touching any surface that is potentially contaminated.

Personal protection measures

In general, the use of face masks is mandatory at all times when inside campus buildings, as well as on outside premises and grounds when a safe social distance cannot be maintained.

While using a face mask, it is essential to adjust the outer part and its edges to your face.  If not, its effectiveness is greatly diminished, if not totally absent.  If your mask is not a perfect fit, the air you are breathing will NOT be filtered. 

 To use a face mask properly, follow these steps:

  • Before putting it on, wash your hands with soap and water or an alcohol-based disinfectant.
  • Fully cover your mouth and nose, ensuring that there is no gap between your face and the mask. 
  • Avoid touching your mask while wearing it. 
  • Take your mask off from the back, without touching the front part.
  • Discard your used mask in the wastebasket or in the specially designated bin, then wash your hands.  

An exception to this requirement are those individuals with breathing difficulties whose condition could be exacerbated by use of a face mask or whose use could jeopardize their health or whose disability prevents them from wearing one. 

At the same time, its use is not required in activities not compatible with wearing one, such as eating or drinking, as well as in circumstances beyond one’s control or in a special situation of necessity.

Measures to ensure a safe social distance and avoid crowding

These measures are aimed at minimizing contact between the members of the University Community as they carry out their daily activities on the Campuses, including any outside visitors who might be present, and at always maintaining a safe social distance:

  • Limited room capacity 
  • Online meetings
  • Specific norms for transit on stairs and hallways 
  • Maximum occupancy of bathrooms
  • Restricted use of elevators

Further information

Hygiene-health measures in buildings, facilities and grounds

Cleaning and disinfection

Prior to restarting activity, a general and thorough disinfection of University premises and facilities has taken place.

The following measures will be adapted during the academic year: 

  • General measures for cleaning: Frequently used areas will be cleaned with approved ant-viral products, while other zones will be cleaned with the usual disinfection products.
  • Cleaning common areas:  Special attention will be paid to common areas and frequently touched surfaces such as door handles, desks, furniture, railings, floors, telephones, hooks and hangers, and other elements with similar features.
  • Cleaning classrooms: Classrooms will be cleaned on a daily basis before the start of teaching activity. 
  • Cleaning bathrooms: Bathrooms will be cleaned on a daily basis, with the frequency established by regulations for cleaning and disinfecting bathrooms, ensuring that soap and water is available at all times for proper hand washing.

Ventilation and Air-Conditioning

In accordance with recommendations established by the Spanish Health Ministry for operation and maintenance of ventilation and air conditioning systems in  buildings to prevent the spread of Sars-CoV-2, incorporating recommendations from international agency experts in this matter (1), criteria has been set up for proper functioning in University facilities to help prevent the spread of infection in its buildings.

Before academic activity start up, all air filters were changed.

During the academic year, the following measures are to be adopted: 

  • Air filters: Periodic change of air filters.
  • Ventilation: Every day the ventilation system will be turned on two hours before the building is opened for use, and will be kept running for two hours afterwards.  Air will be renewed between five and eight times every hour.  
  • To reinforce building ventilation, windows should remain open to the extent possible.

Functioning of ventilation and air-conditioning systems in University buildings