VPR Announcement - Safety Updates for Off-Campus Research and Fieldwork - Natural Sciences

November 24, 2020

Attn: Faculty, trainees and staff registered in EHS Integrator for Off-Campus Research and Fieldwork/Natural Sciences

Summary: Safety Updates Natural Sciences Researchers from the Vice Provost for Research and the Off-Campus Research and Fieldwork Committee

Dear Researcher,

You are receiving this note because you have been approved for off-campus research and fieldwork in the natural sciences under Yale’s phased research reactivation plan.

As the pandemic worsens dramatically across the United States and around the world, we write with a number of suggestions for the continuing safety of your research. While many of you have already finished your off-campus research and fieldwork for the season, these suggestions and resources are relevant for future planning.

1) If you have not done so recently, now is a good time to review your ramp down plan, see if it needs modifications, and decide under what conditions it would be implemented. Please ensure that all members of your team are consulted.

2) Yale has recently updated a number of its policies and recommendations that may be relevant to your research. These include:

3) There are considerable data on COVID conditions in the USA and across the globe, and guidance for general travel safety:

4) Depending on your research methods and plans, consider incorporating enhanced protection strategies, such as:

  • Regular asymptomatic testing for you and other member of your research team.
  • Avoiding eating in groups and dining in restaurants - many recent cases of virus. transmission have arisen from eating together and from social gatherings; consider take-out options instead.
  • Avoiding group gatherings -particularly in enclosed spaces.
  • Wearing masks in all public places and while interacting with others.
  • Wearing eye protection – it has been shown to mitigate risk of virus transmission.
  • Ensuring appropriate ventilation in indoor places. See CDC recommendations for suggestions relevant to your situation.

In addition to reviewing registrations, the Off-Campus Research and Fieldwork Committee serves as a general resource for Yale researchers navigating the challenges of off-campus research and fieldwork during the pandemic. If you have questions or concerns about your research, please don’t hesitate to contact us.

Sincerely,

Michael C. Crair
William Ziegler III Professor of Neuroscience
Vice Provost for Research

Steven Wilkinson
Chair, Off-Campus Research and Fieldwork Committee

David Post
Chair, Natural Sciences Subcommittee