Coronavirus - Current situation
On this website you will find the latest information from the University of Bern on how to deal with the corona epidemic.
The Dies academicus on Saturday, December 4, will be canceled. It has not yet been determined whether a celebration will take place at a later date.
The Bachelor's open days on December 7 and 8 will take place exclusively online.
There are currently no changes for courses and exams. In accordance with federal and cantonal requirements, they can continue to be held in person for the time being.
Employees of the University of Bern are strongly encouraged to work from home and to hold meetings virtually wherever reasonable or possible.
Internal Christmas parties are also canceled.
It is also strongly recommended to "work from home as much as possible" and that in-person meetings be kept to a minimum. The government also points out that the vaccination against Sars-CoV-2 is very efficient in preventing severe courses of disease, thus relieving the burden on health institutions. The university supports these decisions and recommendations.
Furthermore, the university has decided that the test sites at the University of Bern will remain open as normal until December 17. Over the holidays, the two test sites Hochschulstrasse 4 and Tierspital will be open from December 20 to 22, as well as from December 27 to 29. Certificate checks will continue as before over the holidays. From January 3 2022, all three test sites will be open again as usual, until at least the end of March.
The top priority is protecting everyone's health. Currently, the following regulations and recommendations apply:
- There is a certificate requirement for all activities that take place within the framework of the university, regardless of the number of participants. A fact sheet on the general handling of the current situation can be found here. Answers to current questions can be found here.
- The University offers testing opportunities for a so-called ‘UniBE-certificate’ at three locations. This certificate is valid only for the University.
- The compliance with the certificate requirement is controlled by means of random checks. The random checks are carried out by authorized and trained personnel of the company VüCH AG.
- In addition to the previous regulations, masks must be worn by people aged 12 and over at all events - regardless of whether the event is subject to a certificate requirement or not. Speakers, people engaged in sports or cultural activities, and guests who are consuming food and beverages are exempt.
- Supervisors, lecturers and organizers of events such as meetings etc. do not have to carry out checks, but they are authorized to do so.
- There are attendance requirements for various events and activities in teaching and operations. These are still valid. Students and employees are required to attend these events with a valid certificate. There is no right to online participation in these cases.
- Where possible and reasonable, continue to work from home in consultation with superiors.
- In case of symptoms of illness, stay at home and avoid contact with others (self-isolation).
- Masks must be worn in buildings.
- Masks do not have to be worn in the workplace if everyone present has a certificate and maintains a distance of 1.50 meters. If not everyone present has a valid certificate, masks must be worn by everyone in the room.
- Meetings, discussions, etc. can be conducted in person if all participants have a certificate and maintain the distance of 1.50 meters. In this case, wearing a mask is not required. Attending discussions, meetings, etc. in person without a valid certificate is not allowed.
- All continuing education courses and events must be carried out with a Covid certificate (Protection concept, last amended on September 27, 2021).
- In libraries, a mask must be worn to borrow books and a certificate is required to use reading places and participate in events. You can find more information here.
- A certificate is required to take part in university sports. You can find all information about Unisport here.
- Events with external participation which are not teaching or continuing education are also possible again, in principle. The certificate requirement applies for participation in all these events. Reservations must be made through the auditorium administrator.
- The crisis management team of the University of Bern has closely examined the possibilities and effects of individual testing and mass testing on everyday life at the University and has adapted this concept several times based on the epidemiological situation and the requirements of the federal government and the canton.
In order to increase the safety at events which are not teaching or continuing education, the university is now providing rapid antigen tests free of charge. The rapid antigen tests can be ordered by event organizers via email at email@example.com. Ideally, the order should be placed several days in advance so that delivery can be guaranteed.
The university's crisis management team recommends:
- Vaccination against Sars-CoV-2: be.vacme.ch
- Installing the official Swiss-COVID app.
All other measures, especially the social distancing rules and hygiene recommendations, remain in place and apply until further notice. The website is regularly being updated. In the event of contradictory statements, the latest information applies.
Testing sites at the University of Bern
Starting October 1st, members of the University of Bern will have the opportunity to get tested and receive a UniBE certificate at three locations.
- Test site H4: Hochschulstrasse 4 (main building), first floor, east wing (site plan and building plan)
- Test site Bus 20a: Bühlstrasse 20a (pavilion), first floor (site plan and building plan)
- Test site Bg107: Bremgartenstrasse 107 (veterinary hospital), first floor site plan and building plan)
The testing sites are open from Monday to Friday from 08:00 to 14:00. Registration must be done in advance at covidtest.unibe.ch. The UNICARD must also be presented.
You can find more testing opportunities in the canton of Bern here.
Procedure for those who show symptoms of disease
If symptoms of illness occur, stay at home and avoid contact with other people (self-isolation).
Inform your doctor. Your doctor will decide whether a test is appropriate.
If you are tested and the result is positive, you must continue to isolate yourself. The competent cantonal authority will contact you and discuss all further steps. The cantonal authority will also inform you when the isolation can end.
If the test result is negative, you can leave isolation 24 hours after the last symptoms of the disease have subsided.
Points of contact
The university’s in-house physician is the first point of contact for lecturers and employees with medical questions related to Covid-19 – in particular for questions regarding the handling of people who have tested positive. She can be contacted by e-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
For UniBE-specific questions: Risk Management Unit as coordinating office, E-Mail
Public Events and Infrastructure
The university buildings are basically open.
Events with external participation which are not teaching or continuing education are also possible again, in principle. At these events, a valid COVID certificate is required for participation.
In-person courses and continuing education can only take with a valid Covid certificate.
In addition to the previous regulations, masks must be worn by people aged 12 and over at all events - regardless of whether the event is subject to a certificate requirement or not.
In libraries, a mask must be worn to borrow books and a certificate is required to use reading places and participate in events. You can find more information here.
A certificate is required to take part in university sports. You can find all information about Unisport here (in german).
The situation may change continuously. The most up-to-date information for Switzerland can be found on the website of the Federal Office of Public Health.
For further questions about the coronavirus: Infoline FOPH: +41 58 463 00 00
Business and private trips
The Federal Council has decided to ease restrictions for entry into Switzerland. For entry from the Schengen area, the quarantine requirement will be lifted. Vaccinated and recovered persons entering from a country or area where variants of the virus are circulating can enter without testing and quarantine as long as it is certain that the vaccination provides good protection. Those who are neither vaccinated nor recovered must present a negative PCR test or rapid antigen test and enter quarantine after entry. You can find further information on this here.
Responsibilities and directives
The crisis management unit and the University Executive Board are responsible for the drafting and enactment of university directives.
Organizational units (institutes, departments, divisions) are responsible for the implementation and monitoring of the University's directives. The responsibility lies directly with the managers of the respective organisational units.
In every situation, a substitute regulation must be established.
The following directives generally describe the minimum standards in principle. In case of doubt, whichever option that minimizes the risk of spreading the disease, based on local conditions, should be chosen.