Coronavirus causes a respiratory illness in people who are exposed and vulnerable to it. It is a mild-to-severe illness with symptoms such as fever, cough, shortness of breath, or other issues. In some cases, it can result in disability and can be fatal. More than 650,000 Americans have died from this disease since the spring of 2020.
The disease is prevalent throughout the world and remains dangerous to those who are unvaccinated, immunocompromised, or who are otherwise susceptible to its damaging health effects. There is no way to know whether you would be susceptible to a severe case of the original virus or a variant such as Delta. Vaccination is highly recommended as the most scientifically proven method of protection, aside from 100% quarantine.
Henry Ford College campus grounds and facilities remain closed for general public use. Faculty, staff, and students taking or supporting face-to-face classes and operations are permitted on campus, after filling out a required screening form listed in the banner at the top of this page. Visitors who are invited to campus for tours or other official HFC activities should fill out the visitor screening form.
Members of the public wishing to access the Gateway Trail along the main campus' south and west perimeter are advised to fill out the visitor screening form on your cell phone, and carry this with you on days you plan to use the trail.
NOTE: For information about vaccine distribution in our area, we recommend you check the State of Michigan vaccine website.
Safety requirements and procedures on HFC campuses
Risk and safety at HFC: with or without being vaccinated
Due to the global COVID-19 pandemic, being present in public spaces, including Henry Ford College campuses and work sites, carries a risk that you may be infected with the virus.
You can significantly reduce your risk of a serious COVID infection by getting vaccinated. Vaccination information is available on this webpage.
While Henry Ford College is doing what it can to reduce the risk of COVID-19 transmission on our campuses, the College cannot guarantee your safety. Please follow all policies, regulations, signage, and guidance from College officials while you are on our campuses, such as pre-screening, wearing face masks, sanitizing, and social distancing.
While the vaccines currently being administered will reduce risk for most, they do not eliminate the risk. This graphic describes the relative risks to vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who follow (or do not follow) recommended safety procedures.
Further information about how to manage your risks is included on this website. The information on this website should not be construed as medical or legal advice. Consult your physician or other licensed professional for information pertaining to your personal health and wellness.
Face coverings (masks) are required at HFC
As of August 17, 2021, Henry Ford College requires everyone to wear a face mask in all indoor spaces, except individuals who are in private offices or similar socially distanced spaces. Facemasks are required in all on-campus classrooms and labs.
Wearing face coverings is a way we can protect each other and share the responsibility to keep our community safe.
Social distancing, sanitizing, and other safety measures
We will practice social distancing to the maximum extent possible on our campuses. Classrooms are set up to maximize social distancing wherever possible. We recommend you attempt to remain 3-6 feet from other people while on campus, especially if you are unvaccinated. When you are in hallways or entering restrooms, this may mean you need to wait for someone else to leave the area.
We will provide hand sanitizer in campus buildings that are open for classes.
Please wash your hands regularly with soap and water.
Follow directions on signage where provided
You will see signs posted on doors, near elevators, and in other locations on campus. Everyone on our campuses is required to observe and comply with the notifications on these signs.
- Face covering policies
- Observe social distancing
- Wash your hands
- Additional location-specific signage
Reporting COVID cases to the College
Faculty, staff, and students should not come to Henry Ford College campuses, clinical sites, or work/apprenticeship sites if they are sick. They should notify HFC officials if they become sick with COVID-19 symptoms, test positive for COVID-19, or have been exposed to someone with COVID-19 symptoms or a confirmed or suspected case. (Note that health care workers who are exposed to COVID-19 patients in the course of their jobs and who use appropriate PPE and health care safety do not need to follow the reporting and isolation procedures.)
If employees are sick, they should notify their supervisor and Tiffany Webster at email@example.com or 313-845-9692.
If students are sick, they should notify their instructors and Munira Kassim at firstname.lastname@example.org or 313-845-6301.
If notified of illness of someone who is on campus, Campus Safety and the HFC officials identified above will follow the CDC guidance to isolate and transport them, will share home isolation criteria and testing information, and encourage them to contact their healthcare provider.
If notified of an illness of someone who is not currently on campus, the HFC officials identified above will share the home isolation criteria and testing information with the individual, and will also encourage the individual to contact their healthcare provider.
To follow HIPAA requirements and respect employee privacy, the College will not share details of employees' illnesses. In cases where we learn that employees may have been at risk of potential exposure, HR will notify these employees of a potential exposure and recommend they get tested. Any requirements for quarantine will be shared on a case-by-case basis.
Further details are provided in the PDF document, "HFC protocols for when someone gets sick." The College does not provide medical advice. This information is not intended to be medical advice. This information in this document is from the CDC guidelines. Please always consult your healthcare provider for medical advice.
Do not come to campus if you are sick
If you feel unwell, do not come to the HFC campuses. Anyone experiencing symptoms of any respiratory or other infectious illness should not be on campus, as you risk exposing others and possibly exacerbating your symptoms.
If your illness is serious, if you have a high fever or are experiencing shortness of breath, consult a health care professional immediately. Call before going to a hospital, if possible.
If your illness is not acute, call your doctor's office to request guidance.
If you are a student, contact your instructor(s) to discuss your class participation and deadlines. If you test positive for COVID, notify the College according to the guidelines on this webpage.
If you are an employee, reach out to your supervisor as you normally would regarding sick time. If you test positive for COVID, notify HR according to the guidelines on this webpage.
Coronavirus information and resources
How to get vaccinated for COVID-19, or help your community get vaccinated
All State of Michigan residents over the age of 16 are now eligible to receive the coronavirus vaccine, which is widely available. The vaccine has been determined by public health officials, the FDA, and the CDC to be safe and effective. See suggested locations to obtain the vaccine below.
The State of Michigan provides a website with information about the coronavirus vaccine, including eligibility, county-by-county information, appointment scheduling, a dashboard, and more.
Vaccinations are now widely available for anyone over age 16. Most of the outlets listed below will take walk-ins, no appointment necessary.
Vaccines are free -- there is no cost
You will not have to pay to receive a vaccine, regardless of whether you have health insurance coverage. If you do have insurance coverage, the vaccine provider might charge your insurance an administrative fee, but you will not have to pay anything. If you are uninsured, this fee will come from the Health Resources and Services Administration’s Provider’s Relief Fund. You will not be charged.
Suggested locations / options to receive vaccines
- Ford Community and Performing Arts Center
- CVS Pharmacy / RiteAid
- Beaumont Health
- Rite-Aid Pharmacy
- Some area colleges, community centers, and popup clinics also provide vaccinations. Visit the link above or check community websites for details.
Much more information, and ways you can help:
- Volunteer to assist at the Dearborn Clinic (intake and data entry volunteers)
COVID-19 vaccine questions
- Vaccine FAQs
- Michigan COVID-19 Vaccination Interim Prioritization Guidance
- Michigan Interim Vaccination Strategy
- Visit the COVID-19 vaccine website
Other ways to get involved
- Help us meet our goal of 70% of Michiganders vaccinated. Visit the Protect MI Commission to learn more.
- Want communication materials to share? Download and distribute Spread Hope, Not COVID resources which are available online.
- Know an employer who wants to host vaccination clinics for their employees? Have them reach out to their local health department.
- Want to administer vaccines? For information visit Michigan.gov/COVIDvaccine under “provider guidance and educational resources” tab.
- Want to volunteer? Sign up at MI Volunteer Registry.
If you believe you have been exposed to Coronavirus, or you or a family member are experiencing symptoms and would like to be tested for coronavirus, please refer to Michigan.gov/CoronavirusTest to find a site near you that offers free testing.
To obtain this information by phone, Call the COVID-19 Hotline at 888-535-6136 and select 1.
You may also contact your health care professional to discuss testing.
What you can do to avoid getting sick
While there is no way to guarantee you will not catch an infectious disease, you can take significant steps to increase your chances of staying healthy. This reminder of healthy habits and prevention emphasizes proven techniques that might be helpful to you. Winter, in particular, tends to be a time when respiratory and intestinal illnesses like cold and flu are prevalent.
NOTE: There are many online sources for information about avoiding infection with coronavirus. Some include:
- CDC "Stop the Spread of Germs" poster
- CDC "What to do if you are sick with COVID-19" poster
- CDC fact sheet
- CDC resource site
You will find many other sources that provide similar tips to the list below.
First, and most important, wash your hands regularly, and thoroughly with soap and water. This is especially important after you handle food, use the restroom, use public transportation, spend time in a public place, or find yourself in close proximity to people who are sick.
Cover your nose and mouth when you cough or sneeze. The preferred method is to use the crook of your elbow if you need to sneeze. Face away from others, and use a tissue if possible. Wash your hands afterward!
Some people keep a container of hand sanitizer near their desk or in their backpack or purse. If you do not have access to soap and water, use a hand sanitizer that is at least 60% alcohol as a good option for killing germs.
Try to avoid touching your face, mouth, and nose when you are in public places. This will help you avoid transferring germs from surfaces and implements into your respiratory and digestive tract.
Wash sheets, towels, hats, scarves, and similar items regularly – and immediately if you’ve been sick.
Touching people and things:
Cell phones and germs: cell phones are notoriously covered with germs. Avoid picking up or handling someone else’s cell phone. Don’t let others handle your cell phone. And clean your cell phone’s surfaces frequently!
Clean and disinfect surfaces, such as countertops, desktops, and doorknobs, that are likely to be contaminated with germs.
Office and classroom implements like pens, pencils, staplers, tape dispensers, computer keyboards / mice, and phones are all items that carry germs. Wash your hands if you are sharing these items with others or using labs.
Avoid close contact with sick people. Do not shake hands with people if you or they are sick. If your intimate partner has a cold or flu, keep your distance until they have fully recovered.
Don’t put your backpack, coat, or other outerwear on your bed or pillow. These items can pick up all kinds of germs (and dirt) that you don’t want on your face.
Do not share toiletries or makeup with roommates.
If you are sick, you should stay home.
Avoid physical social contact, such as shaking hands or hugging people you don't know well. You can use a warm verbal greeting or a nod and smile as alternatives to touching.
Food and food implements:
Maintain a healthy diet if you can. Eat mostly fresh foods, and minimal processed or junk foods.
Do not partake of food items that others may have touched with bare hands. Bowls of unwrapped mints, candies, or chocolates are high risk spots for germs.
Do not eat perishable food that has been sitting out for a long period of time.
Do not share beverage containers, dishes, or utensils with others. Wash your dishes in hot, soapy water and rinse before re-using them.
If you are visiting a food buffet, consider using a napkin or wearing a glove so you are not touching the serving implements that others have touched with bare hands.
Do not place food or snacks directly on surfaces. Use a plate or napkin to protect yourself from transferring germs to your food before consuming it.
Other tips for staying healthy:
Get a flu shot when they are available.
If you are sick, stay home and avoid contact with others. Notify your supervisor, instructor, or students if you can’t make it to class or work because you are sick.
Maintain a healthy diet.
Get enough sleep.
Limit your alcohol intake.
Spend time with people who care about you. This can help with physical, mental, and emotional health.
Keep your stress levels manageable (some of the above tips can help. Counseling is also available on campus if you need it.)
Wear a protective mask when you are in public places.
If you do get sick, especially if your symptoms are severe or you’re not recovering, seek immediate medical attention.
Medical-grade devices are used by health care providers to protect them and their patients. Members of the public should wear masks when in public places, to protect others. Masks are required on the HFC campuses (see above). Gloves are optional.
The best way to avoid contracting and spreading coronavirus is to stay away from other people. Staying home and maintaining social distancing practices will keep you safe.
You will probably need to go to food stores and other places to pick up essential food and supplies. You should wear a non-medical-grade face mask over your mouth and nose when in public places. Wearing a face mask or gloves is not a sure way to prevent transmission, and you must still practice care, hygiene, and social distancing. Be aware of cross-contamination.
Face masks or surgical masks
Medical grade or surgical masks should be reserved for health care professionals. Members of the public should wear a non-medical-grade face mask when in public places. Disposable masks should be used one time and then disposed of. Reusable masks should be washed regularly with soap and hot water.
Please follow standard safety measures (social distancing, hand washing, sanitization, and hygiene) even when you wear a face mask.
Rubber gloves or surgical gloves
Surgical gloves are best suited for one-time use in treating a single patient in a health care setting. If you wear gloves to protect yourself from touching surfaces doorknobs, keyboards, keypads, etc., be aware that you will be causing cross-contamination whenever you touch another surface. Your gloves can quickly become a concentrated source of contamination.
This is why you will observe health care professionals removing gloves inside-out, throwing them away, and washing their hands after every use.
We recommend you follow standard safety measures (social distancing, hand washing, sanitization, and hygiene) even if you choose to wear gloves.
Throw your gloves away or sanitize them after you wear them, and wash your hands with hot, soapy water immediately. Sanitize any surfaces you touched while wearing gloves, to reduce cross-contamination.
Remember: coronavirus cannot penetrate healthy skin. You do not need to wear gloves to protect your hands, unless you have cuts to your skin. Washing your hands regularly and thoroughly is sufficient to degrade the virus.
Video: what is Coronavirus and how does it spread?
The World Health Organization provides this 4-and-a-half-minute video that explains what Coronavirus is and what the risks are.
Recommended external coronavirus resources
The following resources are free and are reliable for information and assistance to our community.