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COVID-19: HR Update As We Monitor COVID-19

Monday, March 10
Email - “UPDATE: Coronavirus & BCBST Member Info”
Sent: 4:15 p.m. EST  | From: Rebecca McNair, HR
To: All employees


All Employees,

The world health community continues to monitor closely the emergence of the SARS-CoV-2 virus and the disease it causes, named "coronavirus disease 2019" (COVID-19). At this time, no one knows how severe this outbreak will be. Given this uncertainty and the fact that the seasonal influenza (flu) virus is also widespread, we are taking proactive steps in preparation to address concerns. First and foremost, it is our desire to care and maintain a safe place to work and study for our faculty, staff, and students.

We ask all employees to cooperate in taking steps to reduce the transmission of communicable diseases in the workplace. Employees are reminded of the following:

  • Stay home when you are sick.

  • Wash your hands frequently with warm, soapy water for at least 20 seconds.

  • Practice covering your cough and sneezes with a tissue, or cough and sneeze into your upper sleeve.

  • Avoid touching your nose, mouth, and eyes

  • Clean frequently touched surfaces.


Health and Facilities Services has provided alcohol-based hand sanitizers throughout the offices and in common areas. It is also suggested that departments take care of wiping down doorknobs and frequently touched common surfaces (phones, computers, etc). Cleaning wipes can be provided by Health Services if needed for your area.

It is critical that employees do not report to work while they are experiencing respiratory symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, sore throat, runny or stuffy nose, body aches, headache, chills or fatigue. Currently, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends that employees remain at home until at least 24 hours after they are free of fever (100 degrees F or 37.8 degrees C) or signs of a fever without the use of fever-reducing medications. Many times, with the best of intentions, employees report to work even though they feel ill.

If you are currently on Covenant College’s health plan with BCBST here are a few steps that they have taken to support their subscribers:

  • Testing and treatment will be covered. If an employee thinks they’ve been exposed to or have coronavirus, they should pursue testing and treatment just as they would for any other illness. BCBST won’t require pre-authorization for FDA-approved COVID-19 tests or treatments deemed appropriate by the employee’s provider, even if they’re experimental. They’ll be covered at the level of their usual benefits with the normal member cost-share.

  • Prescriptions can be filled early and in greater amounts. BCBST is temporarily updating their pharmacy guidelines to allow early refills and 90-day fills on most medications. Controlled substances and some specialty drugs are excluded from this change.

  • BCBST is preparing for changes to how we work and serve our members. We’re taking steps to make sure we’re here for our members and customers when they need us by planning for business continuity in the event of an outbreak in any of the communities where we have offices.

Please contact the human resources department with any questions or concerns.  We are monitoring this situation closely and will keep you informed with updates as soon as we can.


Kind Regards, 


Rebekah McNair

Director of Human Resources

Covenant College |

Carter Hall, Suite 103

Office:  706.419.1105 | Cell:  423.580.1794