UAB Employee Virtual Town Hall

good morning everyone and welcome to UAB’s virtual Town Hall I’m Rosie O’Beirne on with University Relations just going to give a few housekeeping notes before we get started we are recording this session and we will make it available on you UAB’s Vimeo and YouTube channel later today if you need closed captioning we have live closed captioning and you just need to click on the button on the bottom toolbar today we have some brief updates from leadership so you will hear from our president dr. ray watts or Provost dr. Pam Benoit and our senior VP for Finance and Administration allen bolton as well as our CEO of our health system dr. will ferniany and then afterwards we will open it up to Q&A and if we don’t get to all of your questions we will collect those most commonly asked questions and we will do a follow-up in the next ereorter so be on the lookout for that so without further ado I will hand the floor over to dr ray watts thank you very much it’s a pleasure to be with you this morning and add my welcome we are having this town hall so that all of our faculty and staff can be updated from our leadership team and have the opportunity to ask questions that are on your mind as you know earlier this week on Monday we did announce some additional expense reductions to deal with the projected revenue decrease in potential loss of over 40 million dollars for the University and almost 230 million dollars for the Health System through the end of our fiscal year which is September 30th 2020 we have made a wide range of expense reductions and the last option we have had is to consider our workforce in our limited business model on how best to deploy all of our value boys we did announce the furlough of about 325 of our employees in the university and this is a temporary furlough from May 10th through July 31st and we will maintain everyone’s benefits including all of their health insurance and our HR team will apply automatically for state of Alabama unemployment benefits and other cares Act benefits that you may be eligible for the Health System facing such a larger financial challenge and trying to restore our clinics and Hospital activities over the coming weeks and few months had to take a different tact and they are enacting partial salary reductions on a sliding scale for our faculty and staff at various levels this is through the end of December unless we can reverse it sooner same with the furloughs if our financial situation has changed and we can bring back people sooner or restore full salary sooner we will do so our primary goal has always been the safety and health of our employees and our students and the patient’s we serve and our community and state and to do all we can to help others around the world because of our experts and the skill of our faculty and staff and we want to keep that always foremost we are still in a limited business model recommending that our employees who are not essential on campus continue to work the remote access and the majority can do that these ones who are being furloughed are the employees whose position right now cannot they can’t do their job because they need to be on campus so they need to have a full activity schedule for the University in the Health System but let us let you know that we will follow all safety guidelines and we are studying how to begin to bring our faculty and staff back more fully to campus dr. Benoit is leading a campus-wide Task Force dr. Vickers is serving on the system and multi campus tax force is one of the co-chairs good news is that our Hospital our world-class laboratory medicine team and

pathology team have really increased our ability to test and test with a very high reliability we can now do well over a thousand or 2,000 covid tests today and we’re now capable of doing over a thousand serology that is antibody tests today and these are not the antibodies that aren’t accurate these are very highly precise covid 19 antibodies dr Vickers and dr. Erwin and our public health team and others are working on a plan to be able to use our coded night teen tracker system to know the covid status of our employees and to know how to make sure we bring back employees safely and want to protect patient protect our employees from being exposed to others and that’s why in the Birmingham city limits we have a facemask ordinance and we worked with the mayor on that and felt that people in public needed to wear a face mask to protect others in case they were an asymptomatic carrier at the time so we’re doing everything we can to make sure that we are as safe as possible but we want to restore our research and our clinical activities and our summer has already set as an online a remote academic session we are planning on the return to campus as of the fall semester now that’s a a fluid situation and there’s a lot to be done between now and then I would remind you that this virus is still very active over quarter a million people in the world have died the number of cases in Alabama have gone up 20% in the last week so it’s not leveled off or going away and what we are planning to use is our expertise and skill to use testing and tracking and tracing to be able to partially in the graduated way bring our employees back to campus but to make sure that they are safe and we will follow all social distancing guidelines and all hygiene guidelines and facemask guidelines as we return our workforce I’ll stop there and I’d like to turn it over to Provost Benoit and I’d like to thank her and her team for such a successful virtual commencement this past weekend for our graduates dr. Benoit it was a great commencement good morning everyone I wanted to talk about two things this morning very briefly the first is you were probably aware that we had an optional pass/fail process during the spring and we now know that 16.5% of the students chose pass/fail there are more undergraduates than graduate students who chose that option and the highest number by class were seniors two of the top schools with F there were arts and sciences and business will continue to collect that kind of information for summer as well and the other one I wanted to talk about is the transition back task force so the task force began with a set of principles these will not be surprising to you they’re derived directly from the strategic plan for UAB that we want to preserve the health and safety of our university community that we want to maintain and deliver on our mission of education research economic development between the engagement that we want to preserve and maintain University operations that we want to remain fiscally solvent both now and into the future and that we want to treat our community and a fair and manor there are a number of subcommittees working on the transition back these include subcommittees on students faculty and staff health safety facilities and services research clinical experiences and communication and each one of those subcommittees is working very hard to develop protocols and guidelines so that we can have a smooth transition back in a safe and very productive way so now we’ll hear from Allen Bolton hey good morning everyone I’ve been asked to update everybody on the university’s financial outlook both for the remainder of this fiscal year and for the upcoming fiscal year we’ll start with the remainder of this fiscal year I think as everyone recognizes our fiscal year in September 30th a few weeks ago and our last Town Hall we provided an estimate that our covid related budget gap for the current fiscal year would be between

52 and 77 million dollars with new information that we’ve received new estimates that have been provided within the last 10 days we were able to lower our gap range to a low end of about 45 million to an upper end of in the high 60s we now have increasing confidence that the real number the real budget gap will be at the lower end of that range probably between 45 and 50 million dollars we announced some actions this week as dr. Watts mentioned to help close that gap and we’ve also asked each Dean and vice president to give us their full budget reduction plan by May 15th once we receive those plans we should be in very good shape to close our fiscal year with a balanced budget I want to say we really appreciate everyone’s focus and diligence on this very important stewardship responsibility for all of us now let’s turn for just a minute to the school 21 budget planning process fiscal 21 begins on October 1st and runs through September 30th of 2021 I would say in a normal year the university would be much further along in our budget preparation process for the upcoming fiscal year but as we know this is not a normal year so the pandemic has caused us to really hit the pause button on that process for the past two months and the main reason is we have big challenges with several key estimates that are necessary to build our budget for the fiscal year and let’s talk about what some of those estimates are and what information we need in order to build a reliable and credible budget for the new fiscal year first state funding state funding or state appropriations make up about one-fifth of the university’s revenue in any given year the good news is the legislature returned to session this week with the intent of passing both the education trust fund budget and the general fund budget for fiscal 21 so we are hoping that they meet that objective of theirs and that sometime next week or the week after we should have some very good information flowing to us about their intent for the higher education budget for fiscal 21 so that will help fill a big part of the gap that we’re missing to build our budget secondly tuition makes up about 1/4 of our revenue at the institution and you can imagine that we’re having a difficult time estimating tuition now because that’s built basically on enrollment and retention estimates for our student population our sense is that we will have a much clearer picture of that by later this month and into June so by the time we build our budget in the July timeframe we should have some very good estimates around tuition and enrollment and retention grants and contracts make up about a third of our revenue budget and interestingly that is probably the most stable and reliable source of our estimates right now so we feel pretty good about the data we have on grants and contracts we will certainly keep monitoring that as we build our budget but that’s the one we probably have the fewest questions about right now and then on the expense side as dr. Watts mentioned we have a lot of hope and optimism and dr. Benoit mentioned also we have a return to work task force at significant doing significant work right now around what the fall semester might look like we will have expenses related to our fall semester that aren’t in a normal budget for us so for example if we return to instruction and have to do social distancing we’ll need more classrooms we’ll need personal protective equipment for individuals will have a higher cleaning standard which increases the cost of maintenance and housekeeping so we’ll have to build all of that in our budget as well and again by the June timeframe we should have a much better sense of what those expenses might look like so all that to say we understand what we need in order to build our budget and we should be on pace to have a good budget put together sometime in July for an October 1 start so I’ll stop there and turn it over to dr. Will Ferniany of the CEO of our health system Thank You Allen I’ve never been more proud of UAB

and UAB medicine than I’ve been in the last few months the amount we’ve done to say to serve the state has been amazing but would an even more gratifying to me is how we work together throughout this university the Health System is indebted to the University for work they did on getting dorms ready for us and hotels ready for us and short showers ready for those people that are caring for these patients on the front line and I what do you want to thank take this time to thank all the faculty and staff and what they’ve done particularly the people on the front line I can’t imagine the sacrifice they’ve made to care for the kovat patients in our Hospital we want to recognize these these people and to that end we have developed a task force chaired by dr. Seth Landefeld our chair of Medicine on how we will recognize the people that have gone above and beyond during this crisis as dr. Watts mentioned we the the hospital was hit hard financially with because of the covid reductions in service our projection is about 230 million by the end of the year and to that end was dr Watts mentioned we did a wage and retirement a graduated way to retirement cut until December 31st and as I said on my email I mean my video on one my pledge is the same that dr. Watts said if we can bring these dollars down if we can pay these dollars back when our finances become available we will to get that to bring this to make this reality what we need to do is get the hospital open as quickly and safely as possible and to that end we’ve also have two task force we have one task force chaired by Reid Jones on how quickly and safely we can begin to bring patients back into the facility and we have another task force co-chaired by Anupam agarwal and dr. jean Larsen on how to reopen the office based services our biggest challenge is going to be similar to what Allen said and that is our next year’s budget our goal is to break even by the end of next year this is going to be a challenge we’ll probably have about a hundred and twenty million dollars starting deficit to overcome but I’m sure working together we’ll be able to do it thank you great will now open it up for Q&A if you have a question please drop it in the Q&A section so Jimbo white has a question have all employees that have been furloughed at this time been notified so Alesia let me start with that Rosie okay there are two groups of employees that are receiving notifications the group of employees in what we call category three which are the employees that were unable to work remotely and were not considered essential to be on campus all of those employees have been notified the second group of employees there were individuals in group two which were employees that were a task to work remotely and their supervisors were asked this week to help identify those who have been unable to work effectively or efficiently in a remote setting so those contacts have not been made the list came back from the supervisors yesterday and so we will be working today and tomorrow with notification of all those employees I will say that our HR team has done tremendous work in participating in those notifications on Monday evening after the group three individuals received their notifications our HR team stayed here and made phone calls to every individual that was on that list to answer their questions and just to provide a personal outreach certainly they were not able to reach everyone but they they reach the vast majority of folks on that list and they will do the same with the notifications that are going to occur today and Friday so Alesia any additional comments on that now Thank You Allen we’ll start working with that second group later today okay so Samantha Elliott Briggs asked could you please repeat the first date of the fall academic semester and how

will this impact first-year students freshmen Pam so we’re scheduled to be back on August 24th but there are a number of scenarios that are being examined and one of those could be a potential delay of the fall semester so I can’t I can’t really answer that question yet until we get some recommendations from the transition back task force I know people are very concerned about what will happen and want to have some certainty the difficulty is that this is an evolving situation and we’re trying to be responsive to what we learn and to make evidence-based decisions about what might be best for the Fall great an individual is asking is there has there been any decision taking on the tenure clock extension for School of Medicine faculty I know dr. Vickers is Rosie can you hear me yes yes the question is has there been any decision taken on the tenure clock extension for School of Medicine faculty no no decision at this time we’ll follow the University and the Provost guide as regards to what we will do with that Kim Hope is asking is there a possibility that the decrease in salaries will be reevaluated prior to December 31st 2022 dr. Ferniany we’re going to monitor this every month and look that if I if I could do this I would as you might remember we we’ve had this situation before where we didn’t give a raise and then the performance was better than we imagined and we gave the raise early autumn asked how do we find out what group we are inkless I’m gonna ask Alesia to respond to that one yes and Rosie I want to make sure I’m clear and understanding meaning if there and work to be furloughed or the group for salary reduction or yeah I always this Amy maybe work group and Jim can probably also help with this okay well the work group is on the website you can go out to your work group you can find it on the HR website and you can click on an app that tells you which work group you’re in you put in your blazer ID and it pulls up your work group so you can find that on the website and if you happen to have multiple assignments that have multiple work groups it will indicate the work group for each assignment that you that you currently have in Rosie this is Jim Bakken and University Relations I can add on a little bit there if you google UAB work group you’ll find that website that Alesia was talking about where you can find out whether your work group a work group C or work group F and beyond that the other three groups that can be that are referenced in our communications our work group one I mean I’m sorry Group one group two in group 3 one are those who are or deemed essential to work on campus two are those who are working off campus and then three are those that were referenced earlier that are not working and those assignments are given out by an individual supervisor and so people can ask their supervisor for those groups this is Curt Carver it’s also on the my UAB portal so if you go to settings it links directly to the website that Alesia is alluding to so it’s on the my UAB portal as well great individual is asking and several people are asking our additional furloughs possible later so Allen so I’ll answer that when given what we anticipate with with the budget for the remainder we are not anticipating additional furloughs you know I think anything could happen related to the virus but the path that we’re on right now we’re we’re very comfortable with the steps that have been taken and that those steps will solve our the issue of balancing our budget for the remainder of the year we have several individuals asking how would they be notified if they are indeed furloughed so they will receive a email notification and then they will receive a call from HR is that

correct Alesia that’s correct okay Julio Rivera is asking in regard to classroom teaching in the fall what are your thoughts on faculty members you fall in high-risk categories for covid 19 so that’s one of the things that the task force is taking up not only faculty and high risk categories but also students in high risk categories as well who might have underlying conditions that would make it more difficult for them to return to the classroom so some of the things the transporters looked at is could we offer both synchronous and an asynchronous way of delivering the classroom instruction so that students might be able to take it in another format could the instructor come in in an asynchronous way for that particular classroom could we have courses that were partly online hybrid courses and partly in the classroom so there are a variety of different options to try to address that issue but the idea around vulnerable populations has been very much a part of the discussion and thinking about how we need to make sure that we go again back to our principle that we’re trying to protect the health of our community and thinking about how one measure is probably not going to be appropriate for the entire campus there’s a question for you dr. Watts from Donald do you envision doing kovat testing for employees and students weekly and Quarantine if they has positive well we do anticipate doing testing and having that availability as far as corn taming or isolating our safety task force which is partially led by dr. Vickers will put in place those kinds of guidelines based on the input from our infectious disease in epidemiology experts okay we have a question for dr. Ferniany when are UAB medicine employees faculty and staff going to be notified as to whether sorry that disappeared whether they are not going to whether or not they are going to receive compensation reductions each each employee probably in the next six or seven days may be about ten days from under each employee will receive an individual letter and this is very important because part of this is the retirement reductions in the retirement reductions as Alesia could attest are very difficult because of the ERISA requirement so each we have five plans so each employees retirement issued will be a little bit different up to five percent so everybody will get an individual letter soon will the frontline workers in the hospital be receiving hazard bonus or lesser reduction in pay as I mentioned in my opening statement there’s not going to be hazard pay you know Kovac will be with us for a long time however we want to recognize these staff in a meaningful way and we’ve set up a task force to do that not only the direct patient care but those that supported them many people have gone above and beyond both both on the health side and on the university side Rosia a comment that there is there’s been a formalized task force looking at both the clinical faculty and the research faculty as it relates to reduction or contributions to the losses in the health system the clinical task force has gotten a set of plans for every department and those will be reviewed and approved and I think early next week faculty will get a letter regarding the changes that will occur in compensation the many of the leaders in the departments have had the conversations already with division directors and faculty have some sense of what’s coming but they’ll be formally put out doing early next week the question does UAB qualify for care stimulus package from government if yes does that help offset some of the burden of these financial constraints so I’ll take that question on the university side and maybe doctor for nany can on the health system side the answer is yes we do qualify and will be receiving stimulus dollars on the academic side of campus we’ve already factored that estimate

into the gap number that that I had mentioned both this time and actually it was factored into the early gap estimate as well the total dollars coming to the university is about six million dollars and then there’ll be an additional six million dollars that is directed at directly for students that will be administering as well on the UAB medicine side it is substantial help it right now it’s approximately sixty million we just got another twenty seven million today it’s about sixty million dollars however as I said with before remediation we’re about two thirty so that if you take that off that puts us you know you know down about 180 or so in reductions individual ask any any idea of possible timeline for likely limited resumption of non covid human subjects laboratory research chris yeah I’ll take that one we are as part of the larger university task force and integrating with the University of Alabama system task force we’re developing our protocols and our phased approach to resumption of research activities our it’s our goal to do this with with data in mind and with risk factors in mind for individuals our hope is to have our document and our plan squared away in the next few days and then give people a little bit of time to get their operational plans for their laboratories no matter what kind of research they’re doing so we’re hoping that ideally it would be in a couple three weeks but I’m not going to share an exact date because we don’t know one just yet but we’re working very hard at the resumption of research maybe one of the very first things that we come back start to resume normal operations Charles Alcorn ask is there a rough estimate of savings by not having academic buildings fully staffed for example utility savings and supply savings and that’s a great question I’ll go ahead and take that one I just got a report the preliminary report from our AVP for facilities Greg Parsons last evening and for the month of April alone the savings is about three hundred and eighty thousand dollars in utility savings so we are tracking that information and it is part of the savings ence estimate that have been factored in for the the budget gap closure that we need to do between now and the end of the year and a follow-up question what are potential next steps and cost-cutting measures so that’s what we’ve asked the schools to provide to us by May 15th both this rules and the vice-president’s units we had gotten a preliminary list of that of those from the schools probably five or six weeks ago and we asked them between now and May 15th to sharpen their pencil and really tell us what is most actionable between now and the end of the fiscal year many individuals are asking about employee assistance could you provide more information about employee assistance yes Alesia Rosie do you mean employee assistance educational assistance yes tuition assistance okay because HR has gotten that question a few times that’s why I wanted to be clear but actually I’ll talk about both so I educational assistance benefit has not changed it is it still applies like it always has for our employees and for their dependents so there is no change there the education under the employee assistance us offered through the Employee Assistance and counseling center also is still operational they are seeing clients remotely and are remaining very busy so we always encourage that anyone who needs their service or know someone who needs that Employee Assistance Service please refer them as they are there to help and doing a great job helping all of our faculty and staff during this time individual as well you continue to charge for parking so for the employees that remain on the payroll for this period we will continue

to charge for parking as I had mentioned in the last Town Hall parking is a is an essential part of the infrastructure here and most of the costs are fixed so those costs don’t go away even during limited business operations for the employees that I will be on furlough that they of course will not be charged during that period of time Robbie Tyndall asks well the state legislature take into consideration of the possible enrollment shortfall that’s a great question there is a complicated formula that the legislature looks at when they are deciding higher education appropriation but we have a number of people that are making that case prior to this week and during this week as the legislature is in session in the last Town Hall we asked about tenure and or promotion pay grade raises is there any further update on that I can’t respond to that so this week I sent out a note to the deans reminding them that they needed to keep their promotion and tenure increases as part of their budgets so as they think about their gaps they need to make sure that their accounting for any increases that they might need to do for promotion and tenure so I’m really glad to report that we were able to work through that issue this week and now we’ll be able to continue to provide promotion and tenure increases as normal to Allen and our dr Watts do you envision any possible changes to the TRS contributions we are not anticipating any changes to TRS contributions Jenny Jones wants to know will maternity leave be affected Alesia yeah I don’t anticipate any ways that the paid parental leave or any of the other FMLA- related leaves would be impacted at all are any of the building projects such as the new science building and put on hold we have not officially put any projects on home there we do have a campus and facility Advisory Committee the CP FAC that meets quarterly and reviews projects as they come through and maintains our campus master plan we will be discussing the status of projects at our next CP FAC meeting which I believe is scheduled later this month I’m not certain of that we it was scheduled for April but we moved it because of everything that was going on so it’s a great question it will be a topic of discussion particularly the further out projects that were scheduled for subsequent bond issuances will need to look at the timing of those based on how quickly we can resume operations a question about hospital employees who are participating in the teachers retirement plan able to suspend their personal contributions until the end of the year I don’t know it’s for the Teachers Retirement planned it’s it’s mandatory if you’re a hospital employee it’s not a part of hospital LLC they are not contributing to the teachers retirement plan at all and for the 403 B plan for hospital employees and the LLC employees they can choose to make changes to their contributions and how to do that is a part of the FAQ that’s on the HR webpage and it provides a direct link to the resources and a how-to to walk you through how to make any changes to your retirement plan if that’s what you choose to do has a procedure been established for getting tested for the covid nineteen antibody doctor so two things number one the first step of this is just to make sure we had an actually accurate that is a specific and sensitive test that we could rely on and dr. Netto and dr. Sixto leal have really demonstrated that the platform they’re using works well the second-place piece is that we are prepared to integrate this in our return

strategy but the current data shows that at the most only four to ten percent maybe at the most 15% of the people test positive so but doesn’t give much information except a baseline data point that we can retest in the future and determine who actually or whether the population has increased in the number of those who’ve been exposed and who have antibodies that reflect potentially some immunity we might use it in the context of health care workers but again the numbers are so small the problem is what do you do with the other 95 percent or 85 percent at most who test negative what happens to employees who aren’t able to fully function in a remote status so that is the question that was asked of the supervisors this week so if they are not able to function effectively and efficiently in a remote status those decisions are being made now and they are likely to be added to the furlough list if the decrease in salaries concentrated on work group C alone or other work groups at risk of this sliding scale as well so I will talk about the second part of that question which is are others at risk we you know all options had been discussed when we were going through this process at this time there is no intent to involve work groups a or F in that in that strategy which is salary reductions I will say that leadership both at the universe sitting level and at the Health System level did take reductions in addition to the clinical staff reductions that have been put in place okay well the hiring freeze being lifted after July 31st if not are there plans to lift it at a later time in place the hiring suspension on the university side is in place through the remainder of the fiscal year not through July 31st we will be as the Health System we’re all evaluating things as we go through these next few months but our stated plan right now is for it to be in place with the exception process that is also in place with it for essential hires but it should be in place through the end of the fiscal year so at the end of September any changes to move visa applications h-1b in particular so I can answer that at this point no there have not been any changes and the office of international students and scholars services is fully functioning and processes are moving along just as they always have it’s offering early retirement being considered so I will again say that all all options have been discussed there that is not a plan that’s being considered for fiscal 20 when we begin to build our budget for fiscal 21 I would say that all options would again be on the table if necessary so there there has been some some discussion of it but no firm plan at this point Alecia yeah anything else I don’t have anything else to add this is a more broad question what if there is a resurgence of the virus I don’t know dr Watson I want to speak to that dr. Benoit well certainly in Jefferson County and in Birmingham we have taken the strictest positions to try to limit that and actually blunt the curve and begin to go down the curve a concerning factor is that we have not yet begun to go down in our hospital we continue to run about 50 to 60 kobe positive patients a day there was some trending downward but it’s not going down the way we would like for it to in Jefferson County the incidence is lower than most counties throughout the state it’s certainly lower than mobile and others who’ve had real increases in their numbers of cases across the country and in New York City for example they’ve begun to flatten but nobody is

begun to go down actively so there is a very low likelihood that there could be a resurgence and that’s why continuing these safety measures as far as rigorous social distancing hygiene and face mask wearing in public are so important if we don’t do those things and we come back together we will undo all the good that we’ve done through the pain we suffered through over the last seven eight weeks so we have to take this very seriously this virus hadn’t gone anywhere and again there were like 6,000 s yesterday in the US so we’ve got to be very very rigorous about it we’re gonna have to try to control our behavior and we can’t control the behavior of the virus except by stopping it spread there is no effective therapy beyond the rim desapear which shows some partial benefit and severely ill patients but that’s not going to be a widespread therapy soon and it’s going to take some time for a vaccine we’ve got a lot of pilot projects at UAB working on moving aggressively toward that but as you’ve heard from Anthony Fauci and other experts you know at the earliest it may be a year or nine to twelve months I will say at the same time there is a vaccine the advisor has Pfizer has developed that we’re going to participate in a study in the coming couple of weeks according to dr. Jeanne Marrazzo so we we’ve got the right people working on that but there could be a research is the honest answer but we hope not another individual s with summer daycare programs for school-aged children not opening this plan will there be continued assistance with child care through the Windy app and other programs I think maybe that might be directed at you dr. Fernand be honest about it we haven’t given it any thought so I’m glad somebody brought it up so we can think about it okay all right Chris Kyle asked that contact tracing takes manpower and training is anything being done to hire and train people for this maybe dr. Vickers and even dr. Brown you might talk about some of the things we’re doing Becker I’ve been to things dr. Barnard has mentioned this a number of the health who related Dean’s of mention Asst and in the concept of using students as well as the we’ve talked about this with the Birmingham Service Corps with the city as well so there’s been given thought broadly about how we might engage individuals who are not in their full activities now to use them but particularly we’ve talked about it with the city Rosie I can mention it at least that we’re also in addition to that we’re working on a technological solution or a partial solution to contract contact tracing as well many people that I see this zoom call had been involved in developing an app based protocol for for that so that’s we’re working on that very hard here in the last several weeks I’m so stay tuned on that we’re in addition to that we have and I’ll put in a plug for help beat covid 19.0 RG this is a symptom tracker that is available across the state of Alabama and beyond we’re also looking at that as a way to allow us to determine how people win and how people can come back to work at UAB and other universities all right yeah and it’s a tool that’s developed by our own faculty dr. sue Feldman and Health Professions and Mohan thermal I so please check that out yep this is kind of late-breaking news but related to that but dr. Harris at Alabama Public Health has designated UAB in a formal letter to be partners in developing a tracing app for the state so we literally during this call received the letter from dr. Harrison what a great work being done so since grant funding this might be for you dr

Brown since grant funding is projected to be consistent will there be any flexibility with hiring transfer and pay raise restrictions for both research staff and admin staff that manage grants so that is correct that in fact I just got the information that for the month of April we are again up in new Awards by 12 percent or 37 million dollars and our faculty and administrators who make it happen we’ve submitted 8% 7% more proposals so we’re working hard there the question was about pay rates or pay ray I didn’t hear the end of that I are kind of the questions okay so I’ll answer a question I’ll answer a question tom answer that you’re okay Chris please go ahead I think that the hurry and salary exception process that has been put in place there is do all of the exception processes there are places to indicate funding and so if you as you go through those processes if it’s a hundred percent grant funded or the the level of grant funding is given consideration in the granting of the approval of those hiring or those HR actions so I think that because the I don’t want to say absolutely yes that’s going to be the case but that level of funding is definitely given consideration a lot of questions coming in about the vaccine if a vaccine is developed will it be made mandatory that UAB employees and students you know have it like the flu shot so doctor what’s and Vickers well we’re getting way ahead of ourselves there and that would be a decision that would obviously be dependent on circumstances at the time we can hope very much that we have a very effective vaccine in the nearest possible feature but those kinds of decisions would have to be made when we’re in that situation agree with HIPPA being a consideration has there been any thought given to how employees will be notified if one of their co-workers tested positive once we returned to campus yes I know we we had some of those issues early on probably six seven weeks ago and I believe we put a communication process in place we do want to respect HIPAA and FERPA guidelines and I am trying to remember I don’t know Alesia our gym we had pushed out some guidance to schools and bps about six seven weeks ago around communication yes we did and maybe we can find that communication and recirculate that now because I think I agree it was early phases of this so it may be timely to share that information again there are a lot of questions related to childcare options and resources on the university side if somebody could speak to that well I would say that our childcare center will have to follow all state guidelines in terms of reopening so we and we may also weigh in as well in addition to those guidelines so the safety of the children and of the workers is of paramount importance in that setting so we’ll take whatever precautions are necessary we are in very limited operations right now and providing again very limited childcare services on a on a plan that was reviewed and approved by the state and those services are being provided only to the children frontline health care workers right now Alesia anything further no that’s correct I just have a few minutes left so I want to give the opportunity for some closing remarks Prevost Benoit and then maybe dr. Watts I want to reiterate our thanks to the campus community to faculty to staff to

students who pivoted very quickly so that we could get past the first portion of this but as the president said earlier we’re not out of it we there’s still a long way to go here and so we’re I need your continued support as we try to figure out the best ways forward and we’re doing our very best to think about different scenarios and different options and considering different issues to deal with this very evolving and incredibly extraordinary circumstance that we find ourselves in right now I would say the same and that others have said other leaders have said how proud I am and we are of all of our employees and our students and our alumni and our community for working so well together to support each other and to try to fight this unprecedented epidemic we will come out on the other side of this we don’t know exactly when that will be but in between we’re going to do everything we can to take care of our employees and our students and our community as well as possible we won’t leave any stone unturned and we’re going to work very intensely to beat back and overcome this virus but in the meantime we need everybody engaging to the best of their ability to do the right things and help us fulfill our mission each and every day and to serve all of those who are so dependent on us it’s an honor to serve alongside you thank you this wraps up our virtual Town Hall we will collect all the questions there’s a lot of questions that came in we will take the most commonly asked questions that we did not respond to and they we will have an article in the e report or the next deep reporter so be on the lookout for that thank you for attending goodbye everybody thank you all have a good day