COVID-19 Employee Resource Guide
77 Macalester Street, Room 201 651-696-6280
Employment Services staff are eager to help, whether you simply need someone to talk to or formal assistance navigating and accessing available resources. With that intention, we wanted to provide information on COVID testing and support or resources available through Employment Services and the Macalester benefit plan. Some of the benefits are tied to our enrolled health plan participants, while the others are accessible regardless of benefit election or eligibility. You can find more information about each of these benefits by following the links provided. Again, please know that you may contact any ES staff member for assistance or questions.
Macalester College Employee Vaccination Requirement
In order to sustain our goal of minimizing infections and curtailing transmission on campus, all employees are required to affirm their vaccination status for the COVID-19 vaccine series and booster(s) including dates of each dose using this form. For those eligible to receive a second booster, we highly recommend that you receive this as well. There are two exceptions to providing attestation:
- You are currently in the waiting period for when a booster can be provided. Booster doses are recommended for those who are six months past their second does of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines or two months past their single Johnson & Johnson does. Or,
- You have an existing COVID-19 vaccine exemption in place.
You are required to affirm your vaccination status for the COVID-19 vaccination series and booster dose(s) dates by completing and submitting the COVID-19 Vaccination Status Form.
High rates of vaccination has been one of the foundational public health layers to our in-person fall semester. Such a solid foundation aided in avoiding large-scale outbreaks by limiting cases to small groups of close contacts. Vaccines remain very effective at reducing hospitalizations and death.
The college will accept affirmation of vaccines that have received emergency use authorization (EUA status) by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) or placed on the Emergency Use Listing (EUL) by the World Health Organization (WHO). The FDA has listed for authorized use the following COVID-19 vaccines for emergency use:
Johnson & Johnson (Jannsen)
COVID-19 Testing Guidance and Information
The section Options for Getting a COVID-19 Test on the COVID-19 website main page describes several options for COVID-19 testing, including options applicable to all.
What to Do If you Test Positive
If you test positive for COVID-19, fill out and submit the COVID-19 Student, Staff, and Faculty Reporting Form. Isolate from others for 10 full days. You may leave isolation prior to day 11 if you have a negative rapid antigen test on day 5 or later. Inform any close contacts that you have tested positive. Wear a high-quality mask (N95 or KN95) if you need to be around others. For more details, refer to the COVID-19 FAQ.
If you have HealthPartners insurance, visit their COVID-19 testing page to locate testing locations. HealthPartners is partnering with the MN Department of Health and are offering convenient drive-up testing at eight of their MN clinics following a screening and by appointment only. Their site includes the ability to conduct a screening and if it is determined that you should be tested, they will let you know where to go and tell you more about how the drive-up testing works. You can either login to your HealthPartners account before you begin the testing or can continue as a guest. Macalester amended the health plan to cover testing expenses. As a result there is no cost for Macalester HealthPartners’ participants for the COVID-19 tests when billed through the Plan.
Nice Healthcare is available any individual covered by Macalester’s health insurance. Nice Healthcare offers chat, video and home primary care visits at no cost. Nice offers the most commonly accessed primary care labs, x-ray imaging, prescriptions (550+ prescriptions), physical therapy, mental health therapy, wellness, pregnancy and chronic condition coaching. If you have questions about COVID-19, please schedule a visit with one of their licensed clinicians. Please note that Nice does not provide COVID-19 testing.
Accommodation Request Forms
Minnesota launches new COVID-19 telehealth treatment pilot program
Partnership with Cue Health ensures Minnesotans can access COVID-19 care and therapeutics at no cost
The State of Minnesota launched a new telehealth test-to-treat program today to ensure Minnesotans who have tested positive for COVID-19 have easy access to clinician care and therapeutic treatments that reduce their risk of serious illness or hospitalization.
Beginning immediately, Minnesotans who test positive for COVID-19, either with a home test or a positive test from a lab, can download the Cue Health app and sign up with their Minnesota address to have a virtual consultation with a licensed clinician who will evaluate them to determine if therapeutic treatment is a good option. If they are a good candidate for therapeutics, the clinician can issue that prescription to the patient’s local pharmacy. In some areas of the state, those prescription medications can be delivered to the person’s home. All services, including the consultation, medication and delivery, will come at no cost to the Minnesotans who use this service. This pilot program is available to all Minnesota residents.
“This pilot program is another tool in Minnesota’s toolbox for limiting the negative impacts of COVID-19,” said Minnesota Commissioner of Health Jan Malcolm. “Minnesotans who test positive will be able to more easily access therapeutics that can help them get on the road to recovery. We know that accessing therapeutics within five days of developing symptoms of COVID-19 can greatly improve outcomes and help Minnesotans to avoid severe illness or hospitalization. We are continuing to find new and innovative ways to reduce barriers to access for those therapeutics.”
For more information on how to access this program and for instructions on downloading and getting started with the Cue Health App, please visit care.cuehealth.com/mn.
This pilot program works with any at-home or lab COVID-19 test regardless of brand. For more information on where to access at-home tests, please visit Order rapid tests or check with your insurance company about ways to get free rapid tests from pharmacies. Tests should be PCR or antigen tests and not antibody blood test results.
Heading into the holiday season, the Minnesota Department of Health continues to encourage Minnesotans to celebrate safely. Testing if you have symptoms, staying home if you test positive for COVID-19, and making sure you are up to date with the most recent updated COVID-19 vaccinations are all crucial to keeping our families and communities safe this holiday season. Minnesotans at higher risk for COVID-19 who test positive also can get COVID-19 medications through their health care provider and other in-person test-to-treat locations around the state.
How Minnesotans can get a free COVID-19 shot
- Contact your health care provider or a local pharmacy.
- Use the state’s Find Vaccine Locations to find vaccine providers near you—providers will update their information as appointments are available.
- Check for vaccine appointments at Vaccines.gov, where you can search for appointments by vaccine type (e.g., Pfizer).
- Watch for vaccination clinics being offered at other community locations around Minnesota.
How Minnesotans can get a COVID-19 test
- Walk in or schedule an appointment for a test at one of the state’s free COVID-19 Community Testing Sites. Test-to-treat options are available at some locations.
- Order rapid tests through the state’s free COVID-19 at-home rapid testing program.
- Check with your insurance company about ways to get free rapid tests from pharmacies.
- Find a testing option near you through the state’s Find Testing Locations map.
Macalester Benefits and Resources
Nice Healthcare offers chat, video and home primary care visits at no expense to employees enrolled on Macalester health plan. Nice offers the most commonly accessed primary care labs, x-ray imaging, prescriptions, physical therapy, and mental health therapy. In addition, participants can access coaching on topics such as wellness, pregnancy and living with chronic conditions. Learn more about Nice Healthcare.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
Available to all employees at no cost, the EAP gives you access to a wide range of professional support and resources encompassing mental health, child care, financial consultations, identity theft, legal advice, pet care, senior care and more. The EAP team has taken special steps to recognize the unique challenges of COVID in their service offerings, including the establishment of a comprehensive COVID Resource Center. The Macalester EAP benefit offers 3 mental health consultations at no expense. Learn more about the EAP, including how to establish an account.
Wellness coaching is available to all employees at no cost. Our Wellness Coach, Kelly Fang, has been an invaluable resource to many across our community for the last 5 years. As a confidential resource, Kelly provides 1 on 1 coaching, education and programing related to wellness and selfcare. In addition to establishing a secure video platform to continue coaching sessions, Kelly can assist with connecting you to resources that address your personal needs. Kelly also co-leads the Wellness & Health At Macalester (WHAM) committee. Learn more about wellness coaching.
WHAM (Wellness & Health At Macalester)
WHAM continues its community activities and programing during the summer to keep you active and connected while fitness facilities are closed. Current offerings include: Yoga, Strength Training, Mindfulness and Cardio Training. WHAM offerings are open to all employees. Most offerings are free, while some may require a small registration fee. Learn more about WHAM programs.
Wellbeats is an easy-to-use, on-demand fitness platform to help you workout wherever, whenever, and however you like. This is ideal for the rhythms of the constrained lifestyle that we have had to adopt during this period of staying close to home. With over 450 virtual fitness classes in 29 channels, there’s something for every age, interest and fitness level. From cycling, to yoga, to quick office breaks, there is a class for anyone. All staff and faculty on Macalester’s health plan, as well as your covered spouses or domestic partners, are eligible to participate with no additional cost. Learn more about Wellbeats.
Virtuwell from HealthPartners
Just like a doctor’s visit, but online. No video required. No apps to download. No waiting. That’s Virtuwell – your 24/7 online clinic. Their offerings include responses to your COVID related questions as they help you navigate this uncertain medical environment. This component of our health plan is available to current plan participants and has a per visit cost of $50. Learn more about Virtuwell and establish an account.