December 11, 2020

Important Update for Students in Residence: Medical and COVID Support from Dec. 12 through Jan. 15

This message is intended for all students who will be in residence at any time between Saturday, December 12 and Friday, January 15.

Dear Students:

This message is intended for all students who will be in residence at any time between Saturday, December 12 and Friday, January 15. If you are not living on campus during that time, you can delete this message now.

Please read this message carefully, as it outlines important changes related to medical services and COVID guidance. These changes apply only to the period from December 12 through January 15.

Medical Consultation

The Health Service medical clinic will be closing for the semester at 4 p.m on Friday, December 11. It will be closed through January 18. During the time the Health Service is closed, there are three options available for any student needing medical consultation:

1. Our nurseline will be available to students 24/7 by calling 1-844-915-2069. If you need medical consultation for any condition, this is probably your best first call. Calls to the nurseline are free.

2. Lewis & Clark has partnered with DispatchHealth to provide on-site urgent care services to residential students beginning on Saturday, December 12. DispatchHealth’s clinical teams provide on-site urgent care, including COVID-19 testing services. Students can access DispatchHealth through the DispatchHealth app (available in the App Store or via Google Play), the DispatchHealth website, or calling 503-714-8987.

If you reach out to them, DispatchHealth staff will triage your situation and, if indicated, send a physician assistant or nurse practitioner along with a medical technician to your campus residence to provide medical assessment and consultation. DispatchHealth staff are available every day, including nights, weekends, and holidays, from 8 am to 10 pm.

The typical response time from your outreach to DispatchHealth to their team arriving to evaluate you is two to three hours. This compares very favorably to wait times for appointments at urgent care clinics–but it also underscores that if you are experiencing what might be a medical emergency, you should not call DispatchHealth. In the event of a health emergency anytime over break: As always, residential students should contact Campus Safety at 503-768-7777, and may also call 911. (It is imperative students alert Campus Safety so that Campus Safety staff can guide emergency responders in finding the student’s location.)

Please note that DispatchHealth services are not free–they bill the patient’s insurance in the same way an urgent care clinic would. DispatchHealth accepts most insurance. They are an in-network provider for the student health insurance plan. If you don’t have the student health insurance plan, we encourage you to contact either your insurance plan or DispatchHealth for more information about your specific insurance plan benefits. DispatchHealth accepts credit cards and debit cards for amounts that insurance is not expected to cover.

3. A list of off-site urgent care centers and hospitals are available here.

I am asymptomatic for COVID, but I will be leaving campus for the break and want to get tested for COVID as a precaution. What are my options?

This website from the Oregon Health Authority provides guidance to testing options. Recent research informs us that Zoomcare in Lake Oswego; AFC Urgent Care in Lake Oswego; and Legacy GoHealth in Raleigh Hills are offering COVID testing to asymptomatic individuals–but testing availability can change from week to week.

What if I experience COVID-like symptoms? What do I do over the break?

Going into break, be sure you have masks, a thermometer, some fever-reducing medication, wipes, and hand sanitizer in your residence. Remember to self-assess for symptoms every day.

If you experience symptoms of COVID-19 between December 12 and January 15, you should:

  1. Immediately self-isolate in your residence, and follow the College’s Guidelines for Self-Isolation. (Meal delivery is available for self-isolating students through December 16. Note that after Bon Appetit stops serving meals on December 16, our self-isolation guidelines will be modified to reflect how students who are self-isolating can receive grocery delivery to support their isolation.)

  2. Please do NOT complete the COVID Self-Check and Reporting Form (SCARF), as medical staff will not be reviewing those reports while the Health Service is closed.

  3. Call the Nurse Consultation Service at 1-844-915-2069. If medical evaluation is recommended, students should contact DispatchHealth through their app, their website, or by calling 503-714-8987. Students will be expected to isolate while awaiting testing or test results. Please note that it can take 3-5 days to receive testing results.

While students can go off-campus for COVID testing, students who travel to off-campus testing via rideshare, taxi, public transit or with friends and who test positive will have to solve the challenge of how to return to campus without exposing anyone else to the virus. For this reason, we recommend that if you think you might need COVID testing over the break, you utilize our nurseline as a first step, followed by DispatchHealth if necessary.

If you test positive for COVID, or you are identified as a close contact of a positive case, you are required to immediately notify the College. Please contact Campus Safety at 503-768-7777, and simply request a phone call from the COVID Consultant On-Call. The Consultant will be a Wellness staff member who will then guide you related to the supports you need, including meal delivery and separate housing where you will not risk transmitting the virus to other students. If you are concerned over the break that you might have been exposed to COVID, but aren’t sure, you should also call Campus Safety and ask to speak with the COVID Consultant On-Call. Staff can answer your questions about your potential exposure.

While students will soon have a break, COVID will not be taking a break. Community transmission rates are higher than they have been. Please do not venture off-campus unnecessarily and risk bringing the virus back to campus. If you wish to leave campus during the break for any non-essential travel or activities. be sure to submit your request as soon possible. Requests will not be considered or reviewed between December 19 and January 3. As always, remember to keep your social distance, wear your mask, and wash your hands.

Thank you for all you have done to support the health of our community this fall. Updated guidance for the spring will be provided as we get close to the opening of school in January.

Questions? Please contact us at Covid19info@lclark.edu.

Best wishes for a safe, healthy, and successful ending to your semester!

John Hancock, Ed.D.
Associate Dean of Students for Health and Wellness