FAQs about the Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Dear Members of the University Community,

This page provides the Rectorate’s answers to your questions with regard to measures taken at the University of Greifswald for dealing with the coronavirus (COVID-19). Please keep an eye on the developments and the information provided below. The Rectorate will also inform you via email if any important changes have been made or any important information has been added.

Thank you for your willingness to cooperate and for your understanding.

Important information regarding the measures taken by the State Government to combat the spread of COVID-19 are available in German here [de].

Update 21/01/2021 12.50 p.m.

21/01/2021: The answers to questions 4 and 5 under General Health and Guidelines were updated. 
20/01/2021: The answers to question 3,4, and 5 under General Health and Guidelines, the answers to question 2 under Travel and Work-Related Travel, and question 1 under Studies and Teaching were updated.
13/01/2021: The answer to question 3 under Studies and Teaching was updated.
08/01/2021: The answers to question 1 and 5 under Studies and Teaching were updated.
05/01/2021: The answer to question 1 under General Health and Guidelines was updated.

Studies and Teaching

Which rules apply for holding examinations in winter semester 2020/21?
What are the current regulations with regard to the continuation of teaching and the remaining examinations of winter semester 2020/21?

All teaching at the University of Greifswald shall only be provided in digital formats as of 14/12/2020 onwards, with the exception of:

  • Courses that require specialist laboratories or equipment that is only available at the University can only be held on site up until 18 December and recommence no earlier than 11 January 2021. This also applies to courses to prepare students for examinations at the Studienkolleg (Preparatory Courses). These are all subject to strict observation of the hygiene plans that have been agreed with the Gesundheitsamt (Public Health Office).
  • Subject to strict observation of the hygiene regulations, examinations can also be held on site. If permitted by law, examinations should be held/taken in digital formats.
Which regulations currently apply to the University Library?

As of Thursday, 14/01/2021, onwards, the Central University Library will be open every day from 9.00 a.m. - 10.00 p.m. And, as of Monday, 18/01/2021, onwards, the Departmental Library on the Loefflerstraße Campus will be open again every day from 9.00 a.m. - 10.00 p.m. The libraries’ open stacks areas may only be used by students who are preparing for upcoming compulsory examinations and/or producing coursework that must be submitted by a certain date. A printed confirmation of an examination registration or similar must be shown to the guard at the foyer. For more information, please keep a close eye on the website of the Central University Library.

The contactless borrowing of previously ordered literature and returns are still available.

Which rules must students and lecturers observe when attending or holding classes on site at the University?

The following checklists (summarised information) apply for students attending and lecturers holding classes on site. More detailed information can be found in the Hygiene Plan for Holding Classes at the University.

Which hygiene plans and guidelines currently apply for teaching and studies?

If necessary, the hygiene plans and guidelines may be updated. An updated version will be marked correspondingly.
Please also take note of the information provided by the University’s Health and Safety Officer [de].

Help - I forgot my face mask and am unable to cover my face! What can I do?

Simple face masks can now be purchased at all of the snack vending machines located on the University's premises.

Which deadlines apply for winter semester 2020/21?
  • The lecture period shall start on 12 October. This does not apply to students starting their first semester of the degree courses Human Medicine, Pharmacy, Psychology (B.Sc.) and Dentistry. Lectures for these degree courses start on 2 November 2020.
  • The lecture period for all degree courses shall end on 30 January 2021.
  • Further deadlines (e.g. for applications, admissions to studies) can be found here
How is campus life currently restricted?
  • It is compulsory to wear a face covering at all times in all of the University’s buildings. Exceptions can only be made for offices with one single workstation or in rooms in which no more than two persons are present and a minimum distance of 1.5m is kept between persons at all times. Persons who are unable to wear a face covering must be able to prove this with a medical certificate (in the form of a qualifiziertes Attest).

  • Teaching and examinations are taking place in digital formats

  • The computer rooms are closed until further notice.

  • The University Library, Mensas (cafeterias) and cafés are open, but subject to restrictions.

  • Persons taking part in courses taught on site, in sessions held by University bodies etc. must leave their surname, first name(s), full address, and telephone number to enable the fast breaking of chains of infection in critical situations. For more information on data protection please click here.
Can excursions take place?

Unfortunately, due to the related risks, no excursions lasting several days can take place for the time being until 30/01/2021.

Which regulations have been issued by the Ministry of Education, Science and Culture Mecklenburg-Vorpommern?

The decrees issued by the Ministry of Education regarding studies and teaching at Mecklenburg-Vorpommern's higher education institutions during the coronavirus pandemic can be found here [de].

Conferences and Events

Can events other than courses that are part of the University’s teaching and sessions of University bodies currently be held at the University?

The University continues to be faced with immense organisational challenges due to its obligation to realise and make sure the safety and hygiene requirements that have been developed as a result of the pandemic are observed. Above all, this entails securing normal procedures for teaching, examinations and research, as well as the work of university bodies.  Until further notice, the fulfilment of these key tasks requires a significantly larger number of rooms and administrative effort than usual. As a result of this, no conferences, congresses, ceremonies, colloquia, symposia etc. can take place at the University before the end of winter semester 2020/21’s lecture period (31/01/2021), at the earliest. Rooms shall not be provided for these kinds of events. This applies to events being organised by external parties as well as events organised by members of the university community with external participants.

Are guided tours being provided by the Kustodie (University Collections)?

All of the Kustodie’s guided tours are cancelled until 30/01/2021.

Our school would like to organise a visit to the University of Greifswald, is this currently possible?

Unfortunately, due to the current restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic, we are unable to organise school visits to the University of Greifswald. However, we are able to provide customised virtual visits [de] to the University for interested schools.

Travel and Work-Related Travel

Am I permitted entry to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern and when do I have to go into quarantine?

As a general rule of principle, travel to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (from other federal states or abroad) is prohibited unless one of the exceptions named in § 5(2-11) of the State’s coronavirus ordinance applies.

Exceptions to the ban on entry include

  • Persons who have a registered primary or secondary residence in M-V;
  • Students enrolled at the University of Greifswald;
  • Travel that is required for fulfilling work tasks;
  • Travel for private visits to family relatives (immediate family), who have their primary residence in M-V.

Persons who have been in an international risk area at any point during the 10 daysprior to entry

Persons returning to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern from private travel to high-risk areas in other German federal states must contact the local Gesundheitsamt (Public Health Office) and also self-isolate for 10 days. This does not apply to trips to members of the immediate family. High-risk areas are defined as districts and independent towns with an incidence of 200 or more new coronavirus infections per 100,000 inhabitants in the 7 days prior to entry to Mecklenburg-Vorpommern (see the numbers provided on the RKI’s website [de]). These persons cannot take a test to prove that they are negative and thus terminate their quarantine until 5 days have passed.

Further information can be obtained from the helpline at the Gesundheitsamt (Public Health Office) of the District of Vorpommern-Greifswald (Tel.: +49 3834 8760 2300 or coronakreis-vgde).

Members of the university community and visiting academics, who have travelled to Greifswald from an international risk area, have been to one of these areas during the 10 days prior to entry, or have returned to Greifswald from high-risk areas within Germany and are subject to compulsory quarantine must please inform the University’s Coronavirus Crisis Team by sending an email to coronauni-greifswaldde indicating the date of arrival.

Can employees go on work-related travel?

Work-related travel to events and meetings being held in the following areas are not permitted:

  • international risk areas defined as such by RKI;
  • risk areas within Germany pursuant to RKI’s COVID-19 Dashboard [de] (= incidence rate of > 50 new coronavirus infections per 100,000 inhabitants in the past seven days)

This does not apply to persons whose function is indispensable for normal operations at the University.

Nonetheless, work-related travel even within Mecklenburg-Vorpommern should only be approved after careful consideration. It should only be approved if it is required to maintain the University’s normal operations or for fulfilling important university tasks. Wherever possible, technical alternatives such as telephone and video conferences should be used.

Persons who have permanent authorisation for work-related travel must independently consider the above-named criteria when planning travel and make a dutiful decision at their own discretion.

If work-related travel is required for taking part in events taking place elsewhere, members of staff must observe the valid COVID-19 regulations (keep your distance, observe personal hygiene, wear a face covering, let fresh air in regularly).

Which regulations apply for using (work) vehicles?

If private or work vehicles are to be used for work-related travel, please observe the following regulations:

  • Only the driver and two further passengers may travel in a car, minibuses can carry the driver and up to four passengers. Persons with a cough, runny nose etc. may not travel in the vehicle if the person affected is unable to prove the harmlessness of the symptoms through a medical certificate from a doctor.
  • Both the driver and possible passengers must disinfect their hands with the hand sanitiser in the vehicle prior to starting their journey.
  • If the vehicle has air conditioning, it must be turned off.
  • During the entire journey, all passengers (excluding the driver) must wear an FFP face mask without an exhalation valve.
  • If at all possible, and especially on longer journeys, the interior of the vehicle should be regularly aired for short periods of time.
  • If there is only a driver and one passenger in the vehicle, the passenger must sit in the back of the vehicle.

Work Situation

Which hygiene regulations currently apply to sessions being held for university bodies?

Sessions of university bodies may only be held via video conference until further notice.

When is it compulsory to wear a face covering and who does this apply to?

As a general rule of principle, all persons are obliged to wear a face covering (of any kind) at all times and in all university buildings. 

The following persons are exempt from this obligation:

  • Members of teaching staff whilst teaching classes/courses if it is possible for them to keep a minimum distance of 3m between themselves and the participants;
  • Persons taking exams
  • Members of staff who are in an office by themselves;
  • Members of staff, who work in offices with two workstations, as long as there is a minimum distance of 1.5m between the workstations and the rooms are aired on a regular basis; if more than 2 persons are in an office or other room at any time, they must wear a face covering;
  • Persons who are unable to cover their noses and mouths due to a medical or psychological impairment or a disability, and are able to prove this with a suitable medical certificate (qualifiziertes Attest).

Special regulations apply to persons working in laboratories, please refer to the corresponding guidelines.

Which regulations must I observe when working in the office during the coronavirus pandemic?

Please find further information on this topic in the information provided by the HR Department.

Where can I find information about aspects related to labour law?

Questions and answers related to working from home, childcare, cancellation of holiday etc. have been put together on the HR Department’s website.

General Health and Guidelines for Persons Who Have Tested Positive for COVID-19 and Suspected Cases

Which situations must I report to the Crisis Team?

Please inform the University’s Coronavirus Crisis Team (coronauni-greifswaldde or over the phone under +49 3834 420 1104, Ms. Hosemann), if

  • you have tested positive for COVID-19;
  • the Gesundheitsamt (Public Health Office) has ordered you to go into quarantine/to self-isolate at home following contact to a person who has tested positive for COVID-19;
  • you have entered Mecklenburg-Vorpommern from an international risk area;
  • have entered Mecklenburg-Vorpommern from high-risk areas in other federal states (incidence of 200 and above) and are subject to compulsory quarantine. Persons who are subject to compulsory quarantine are those persons that
    • have a residence or usually reside in Mecklenburg-Vorpommern
    • and who have travelled to a high-risk area for private reasons,
    • but, who have neither visited their immediate family nor spent time there due to joint custody of a child or visiting rights.

Corresponding notifications will of course be handled confidentially.

What should I do if I am showing acute signs of illness that could suggest I have fallen ill with COVID-19 (especially cough, sore throat, high temperature, runny nose...)?
  • please observe the guidelines for the general public issued by the Robert Koch Institute
  • the University’s premises and buildings must not be accessed until you have fully recovered
  • contact the on-call medical services (116 117) or your general practitioner over the phone to find out whether you ought to have a medical examination; this applies, in particular, if you have been to an international risk area in the last 14 days or have entered Mecklenburg-Vorpommern from a risk area within Germany.
  • inform the Crisis Team and, if applicable, your line manager/superior if you have tested positive for COVID-19 (coronauni-greifswaldde).
I have tested positive for COVID-19
  • Compulsory quarantine measures that have been issued by the competent Gesundheitsamt (Public Health Office) must be observed. Please take note of the District of Vorpommern-Greifswald’s General Ruling [de] of 14/01/2021. In accordance to this ruling, people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their direct contacts must observe compulsory quarantine measures. People who have tested positive for COVID-19 have to inform their contacts immediately; they also have to inform them of the above-mentioned obligation.
  • Inform the University's Crisis Team immediately of a positive test result (coronauni-greifswaldde). Please indicate whether you are a student or member of staff.
  • Members of staff: inform your line manager/superior and make sure you observe the steps detailed in the reporting chain. Who have you been in direct contact with at the University and how much contact did you have in the two days to these persons prior to the first signs of illness or prior to having the test taken?
  • Students: please inform the Crisis Team about the classes/courses, sessions of bodies, consultation hours etc. you attended in the two days prior to the first signs of illness or prior to having the test taken.
  • It is not possible to return to the University until the quarantine period has ended and there has been no further signs of illness for 48 hours.
I have been in direct contact with someone who has tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 14 days and show signs of respiratory illness
  • In accordance with the District of Vorpommern-Greifswald’s General Ruling [de] of 14/01/2021, people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their direct contacts must observe compulsory quarantine measures.
  • Please inform the Coronavirus Crisis Team (coronauni-greifswaldde) about the compulsory quarantine pursuant to the General Ruling.
  • Contact your general practitioner over the phone immediately to find out whether it is necessary to have yourself tested.
  • Please inform the University’s Coronavirus Crisis Team (coronauni-greifswaldde) immediately if you have tested positive for the coronavirus. Please also take note of the further information under ‘I have tested positive for COVID-19’.
  • Should you have any further questions, please feel free to contact the Crisis Team (also possible by calling: +49 3834 420 1104, Ms. Hosemann).
I have been in direct contact with a person who has tested positive for COVID-19 in the last 14 days, however show no signs of respiratory illness (yet)
  • In accordance with the District of Vorpommern-Greifswald’s General Ruling [de] of 14/01/2021, people who have tested positive for COVID-19 and their direct contacts must observe compulsory quarantine measures.
  • Please inform the University's Coronavirus Crisis Team (coronauni-greifswaldde) if you are in quarantine, indicating whether you are an employee or student. Employees must also contact their line manager/superior to clarify the next steps.
  • The Coronavirus Crisis Team will be happy to answer any questions you might have, also over the phone (420 1104, Mrs. Hosemann).
My Corona-Warn-App has sent me a risk warning ‘elevated risk’. What should I do?

Please contact the District of Vorpommern-Greifswald’s public helpline under +49 3834 8760 2300 (Mon.-Fri. 8.00 a.m. - 4.00 p.m., Sat./Sun. 10.00 a.m. - 2.00 p.m.) or via email to coronakreis-vgde
Alternatively, please contact your general practitioner. If have received any relevant orders, please inform your line manager/superior and the University's Crisis Team (coronauni-greifswaldde).

How can I protect myself and others from contracting the novel coronavirus?
  • If you show any signs of a respiratory illness, make sure you stay at home.
  • Observe at least 1.5 metres distance to others.
  • Practise good hand hygiene:
    • Regular and thorough washing of hands (for at least 20 seconds)
    • Thorough drying of hands with paper towels
    • No shaking of hands
  • Only cough or sneeze into your elbow (not into your hands or handkerchiefs/tissues)
  • Keep your hands away from your face as much as possible.
  • Avoid large gatherings of people
  • In addition to keeping your distance and practising good hand hygiene, wear a tight-fitting face mask to cover your mouth and nose (surgical mask made with barrier fabric)
Which reporting chain or which measures have been determined if there is a confirmed case of COVID-19 at the University?
I feel strained by the isolation at home, quarantine or the restricted contact to others. Is the University providing any support that could help me come to terms with the current situation?

The Chairs of Clinical Psychology and Psychotherapy, and Clinical and Physiological Psychology/Psychotherapy are providing psychological support to help those affected come to terms with these straining situations. Please visit the chairs’ specific webpages [de] to find out more about the support on offer.
Studierendenwerk's (Student Services) psychological counselling is still available to students.