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Halls Living

Working together to reduce the spread of Covid-19

By QMHalls 01 Sep 2021

In line with UK Government Guidelines, we have made some changes to our Halls Policies for September 2021. We all need to remember however, that we are still living with Covid-19 and that we need to continue to work sensibly together to keep everyone safe.


All our policies are subject to change if the UK Government guidelines change or if we experience an increased number of positive cases in halls.

If you have any questions or concerns about any of the policies put in place, then do not hesitate to contact us at: residentialfeedback@qmul.ac.uk

Definition of households in Queen Mary Halls

In Queen Mary Halls, your household is generally your flat unless you live in Dawson Hall or Floyer House where groups of flats who share the same facilities are defined as a household. Whilst we follow the advice in the UK Government Guidelines for Covid-19, some of our policies may be enhanced to ensure we keep everyone safe.

Guests in halls

You are now permitted to invite guests into your room and flat. We request that residents limit the number of guests they have at any one time. All residents are encouraged to “Clean As You Go” and to not allow guests to use the shared kitchen facilities.

Whilst we are still living with Covid-19 we ask you to help us reduce the spread by asking your guest to leave by 11pm during the first 2 weeks of term.

From the 1st October guests will be allowed to stay for 2 nights a week up to a maximum of 5 nights in any one month.

Guests will not be permitted in households where there is a positive Covid-19 case, or if they are self-isolating.

Large gatherings are to be discouraged and may be dispersed by Queen Mary Security. Please be aware that Queen Mary Security are working with us and may ask you to present your Student ID Card to confirm your identity- you are required to show your ID card if this is requested by any member of staff at Queen Mary.

 

Face coverings

Using face coverings inside buildings is no longer required. However, for the well-being of all residents and staff, we encourage you to continue to wear face coverings when moving around inside the common area of halls particularly during busy periods such as moving in weekend and when using lifts (elevators).

Regular Lateral Flow Testing

We all need to continue to take two lateral flow tests a week and a box containing 7 tests has been placed in your room. You can collect more tests on campus, or from a pharmacy by ordering online.

Getting vaccinated

From Monday 13 September, there will be a vaccination centre on our Mile End campus in the Temporary Building in Geography Square. You can book an appointment and receive the vaccination from 11.00-18.00 Monday to Saturday.

NHS vaccination programme: when can I book my vaccination?

On 18 June 2021, the NHS confirmed anyone 18 or over can now book both vaccinations doses through the NHS website.

Similarly, the government has now confirmed that everyone aged 16 or 17 in England will be offered their first vaccination by Monday 23 August. For more details, visit the NHS website link above.

Residents who are self-isolating through travel

Any resident arriving from a country currently on the UK Travel Red List, is required to self-isolate for 10 days in a UK Government managed hotel, away from campus. Residents arriving from a country currently on the Amber List (except those who are fully vaccinated as defined by the UK Government from the EU and USA and have the required proof), will self-isolate within their allocated Queen Mary accommodation, provided this has been arranged in advance, and will be fully supported, by us, throughout their period of self-isolation. You will have received an invitation to complete an ‘Arrive Safe’ form to inform us if you are from an amber list country and do need to self-isolate in halls.

We will put a sign on the room door of any resident who is self-isolating and will allocate specific slots for them to use the kitchen.

What to do if you feel unwell or receive a positive Covid-19 test result

If you develop symptoms of Covid-19, contact Residences Reception immediately for advice at: residences-reception@qmul.ac.uk or by calling: 020 7882 6470. Residences Reception is open 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

You should also notify the University by emailing: studenthealth@qmul.ac.uk

If you live in the same flat (household) as someone who tests positive, you will also need to self-isolate unless:

  1. You have been fully vaccinated within the UK more than 14 days prior to the positive case
  2. You are under the age of 18 years and 6 months
  3. You are taking part in authorised clinical trials for Covid-19
  4. There is a medical reason why you cannot be vaccinated

Once Residences Reception receive notification of a positive case, they will email all of the residents within the flat (household) informing them that they will need to self-isolate unless they inform us in writing that one of the above applies.

All residents should continue to take regular lateral flow tests (twice weekly) and follow the guidance on the dedicated Queen Mary Coronavirus advice and update page.

PCR testing for new and returning Queen Mary students

Students who travel to the UK from an Amber list country are required to take a PCR test once they have arrived, on days 2 and 8.

Arrivals do not have to take the day 8 test if they are fully vaccinated under either:

  • the UK vaccination programme
  • the UK vaccine programme overseas
  • an approved vaccination programme in Europe or the USA

Further details can be found here.

There are a number of companies who can provide the PCR tests for travellers, all of whom can be found on the gov.uk website. The cost of the PCR tests differs depending on which company you use.

Queen Mary has been in contact with one such company, Future Health Biobank, who can provide our new and returning international students with their PCR testing kits at a reasonable cost.

  • Day 2 is priced at £55
  • Day 2 and 8 are priced at £99 in total

Students wishing to use Future Health Biobank can book their PCR testing kits here.

Once a booking is made, students will receive confirmation and their passenger locator code but if they have any issues, they can contact Oncologica, Future Health Biobank’s partner in processing the tests, on the below details:

Incoming students may also wish to take part in the Day 5 Test to Release scheme, details of which can be found here.

PCR testing FAQs

1. Does Queen Mary have a partnership with Future Health Biobank?
No, Queen Mary are presenting Future Health Biobank as an option for students amongst a number that are available. Students are free to opt for another provider from the gov.uk website.

2. When will the kits be dispatched?
Test kits will be dispatched to students based on their arrival date in the UK. Tests will be sent to the address supplied on the form when the booking is made.

3. Is postage included for returning my tests?
Yes, the testing kit comes with pre-paid envelopes for returning the tests.

4. How do I return my tests?
You are required to post your samples back through a priority post box to make sure they arrive on time. There are several priority post boxes around the Queen Mary campuses and off-campus residences. Locations can be found here.

5. Am I allowed to leave my accommodation whilst I am self-isolating to post my tests back?
Yes, you are allowed to leave your accommodation for the purpose of posting your tests back to Future Health Biobank. Students should return to their accommodation after posting the tests.

6. How long will the test results take to be delivered back to me?
Results are usually sent back to students within 24 hours of being received at the laboratory.

Info taken from: https://www.qmul.ac.uk/newstudents/international-students/arriving-in-the-uk/

All support and guidance relating to Covid-19 at Queen Mary can be found on the website below:

qmul.ac.uk/coronavirus´╗┐