PFM Covid-19 Measures FAQs

Posted in Announcements

In alignment with public health recommendations, Facilities Management is taking measures to prevent community spread of COVID-19.  These measures include undertaking enhanced cleaning, disinfection, and some expansion of porter service.  These are similar in nature to the previously established cleaning for flu protocol.

Frequently Asked Questions

Cleaning Procedures

Enhanced cleaning describes an increase in the frequency of cleaning and disinfecting across the campus.  It focuses on frequent disinfection of common spaces, restrooms, exercise rooms, classrooms, bathrooms, locker rooms, tables, buttons, handrails, faucets, doorknobs, shared keyboards, etc.

To provide a clean and safe atmosphere for our students, faculty and staff, Georgetown University Custodial staff uses only Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) approved disinfectants and industry best practices on an ongoing daily basis in our buildings. We also monitor the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), local public health organizations and follow any new cleaning recommendations related to the virus.

We also have significantly reduced the frequency of our cleaning in private offices, to include the establishment of some centralized garbage and recycling for staff and faculty on campus, and as little as 1x a month entry to clean private, non-public facing, single occupant spaces.

Routine cleaning and disinfecting are key to maintaining a safe environment for faculty, students, and staff.

  •  Cleaning removes dirt and most germs and is usually done with soap and water.
  •  Disinfecting kills most germs, depending on the type of chemical, and only when the chemical product is used as directed on the label.

Routine cleaning and disinfecting

Clean and disinfect at least daily (or more, depending on use and patterns as prescribed below) frequently touched surfaces and objects such as:

  •  Door knobs and handles
  •  Stair rails
  •  Classroom desks and chairs
  • Tables and chairs
  •  Countertops
  •  Handrails
  •  Light switches
  •  Push buttons on vending machines and elevators
  •  Shared remote controls
  •  Shared telephones
  •  Shared desktops
  •  Shared computer keyboards

Frequently touched surfaces are disinfected multiple times a day, including door knobs and handles, stair rails, classroom desks and chairs, tables and chairs, countertops, handrails, light switches, push buttons on vending machines and elevators, shared remote controls, shared telephones, shared desktops, and shared computer keyboards.

The custodial team is taking steps to reduce exposure within each of the GU residential buildings. These efforts include increasing the frequency of surface cleaning, specifically handrails, elevator buttons, and door handles of frequently touched surfaces in common areas. Hand sanitizer is provided in the common areas and/or at elevators. Bathrooms, shared office spaces/suites, common areas/lounge areas, elevators, and stairwells are cleaned. 

Please note: No private rooms/apartments or their corresponding bathrooms are entered to clean or disinfect them. Those areas remain the responsibility of the occupants.

Similar to the cleaning practices in the Residence Halls, efforts include using only EPA recommended products and increased sanitation of frequently touched areas such as handrails, elevator buttons, and door handles. Bathrooms, locker rooms, classrooms, shared office spaces/suites, lecture halls, common areas, elevators, and stairwells will all undergo more frequent cleaning. Hand sanitizer is available in main building entrances, elevator lobbies, outside of classroom clusters and in office areas.

Please Note: Due to the increased frequency of cleaning public spaces, the custodial team offers private office cleaning once a month. Our team is working closely with your building’s Directors, Operations Coordinators and/or Building Managers to facilitate any adjustments or special needs you may have. 

Please bring any garbage and recycling from your desk area to your kitchenette or leave your can outside your door so our team can take care of your waste and recycling.

Hand sanitizer stands are located in high traffic areas, such as building entryways, elevators, classroom clusters, lounge and study spaces, and other high traffic gathering points. There are also permanent, wall-mounted hand sanitizers in community bathrooms within the main campus residence halls.

In preparation for flu season we normally deployed 70 hand sanitizers stands cross campus in early January.  We concentrated on building entry areas, elevators, and some high traffic gathering points.  We also have permanent, wall-mounted hand sanitizers in community bathrooms within the main campus residential portfolio. 

We are adding additional hand sanitizer and sanitizing wipe dispensers in the classroom areas.  We will monitor their use and reevaluate the locations of the dispensers periodically as the needs of the campus change.

To help contribute to the University’s campus-wide cleaning efforts, individuals should make an effort to keep personal spaces clean and sanitized. In Residence Halls, no private rooms/apartments or their corresponding bathrooms will be entered to clean or disinfect them as they are the responsibility of the occupants. Individual private offices will now only be cleaned once per month so trash and recycling should be disposed of in the kitchenette area or left outside your office door.

Campus community members should also wear face coverings in public or shared spaces, practice proper hand hygiene, and observe physical distancing. For additional information about proper mask usage and other resources, please visit GU’s Office of Health and Environmental Safety website.

HVAC/Ventilation Systems

Facilities Management is working to minimize the spread of viruses through the HVAC system. Currently an HVAC assessment and enhancement project is underway. 

The university employed two engineering firms to work with our operation teams to provide guidance, apply best practices, and verify HVAC operations to prepare for occupancy.  They are also working with the operation teams to identify existing configurations and finding ways to improve the current systems in every building across our campus.

More than 52 air handling units have been retrofitted to incorporate filtration that is efficient at capturing airborne viruses in several campus buildings where the campus community  gathers for dining, recreation, athletics, or research. These upgrades will improve the overall effectiveness of the air filter systems so that less dust and airborne contaminants can pass through a filter. The retrofit uses UV-C which is short-wave ultraviolet, considered to be the most effective wavelength for germicidal control. The UV-C filtration systems are shown to inactivate viruses, bacteria, and fungi.

Office of Transportation Management

The Office of Transportation Management has implemented protocols to ensure a healthy and safe environment for riders. To ensure social distancing, the number of riders permitted on each shuttle is reduced, seats are marked on each shuttle to ensure spacing between riders, and riders enter and exit from the rear doors to limit contact with the driver. All shuttles, including the mini shuttles, are cleaned multiple times a day following all applicable CDC guidelines for vehicle cleaning. All riders are required to wear masks, and drivers are provided with appropriate PPE and face coverings.

To keep up with the latest shuttle schedules and any route changes, please visit the Office of Transportation Management’s website.