On Jan. 30, 2020, the World Health Organization declared a public health emergency of international concern for the 2019 novel coronavirus, or COVID-19. On Jan. 31, 2020, the secretary of Health and Human Services declared a public health emergency in the United States and announced new measures to prevent the spread of COVID-19. The current pandemic, which originated in mainland China, has demonstrated the capacity of COVID-19 to spread globally. While supporting other government agencies’ response to the COVID-19 threat, the Department of the Air Force is responding appropriately to protect the health of the force and maintain operational readiness.
A: Commanders have discretion of the length of quarantine for asymptomatic members who have been potentially exposed to COVID-19, through travel, either locally or internationally, or close contact with a suspected or confirmed COVID-19 person. Commanders are encouraged to make a calculated risk assessment in order to sustain mission essential requirements and take actions to mitigate further exposure to others when returning quarantined personnel to duty early. Recommend following medical guidance to the highest extent possible:
The duration for quarantine is typically going to be 14 days from potential exposure. The intent is to allow personnel who have potentially been exposed to limit further interaction during the virus incubation period as well as provide a ready reserve force.
If a member is quarantined due to potential exposure from a suspected COVID-19 PUI, the member should remain quarantined until testing results for the suspected COVID-19 PUI.
If the suspected COVID-19 PUI testing results come back negative, the quarantined member may return to duty (RTD) with no medical clearance required.
If the suspected COVID-19 PUI testing results come back positive, the member will be given an order to isolate themselves for a minimum period of 72 hours after symptoms dissipate, no less than 7 days from the onset of symptoms, or when a COVID-19 test comes back negative. For active duty members, this isolation order will come from their Squadron Commander. For civilian personnel, to include dependents, civilian employees, and contractors, this order will come from a public health official.
A: Quarters - A person who has been seen by a medical professional and was placed on quarters for something other than COVID-19.
Quarantined - An asymptomatic person who has been potentially exposed to COVID-19 (through travel, either locally or internationally, or close contact with a suspected or confirmed COVID-19).
Isolated - A symptomatic person who has been potentially exposed to COVID-19 (through travel, either locally or internationally, or close contact with a suspected or confirmed COVID-19).
PUI (Person Under Investigation) - A symptomatic (fever, coughing, and shortness of breath) person who is either awaiting testing or test results from a medical professional for COVID-19. These members are also counted as isolated.
COVID Positive - A person who has been tested by a medical professional and confirmed positive for COVID-19. These members are also counted as isolated.
Reintegrated - A person who has returned/recovered from Directed Quarantine, Directed Isolation, OR Confirmed Positive with no symptoms.
Recovered - A person who has returned/recovered from Confirmed Positive COVID with no symptoms. If you test positive for COVID-19 you are to remain home until 3 days after your symptoms subside and this must be at least 7 days after the onset of symptoms. You must also be cleared by your PCM. This is a change from the 2 negative test rule previously distributed. These members will also be counted as Reintegrated.
A: Privacy Protection of COVID-19 Information
All PII should be collected, used, and disclosed only as necessary to safeguard public health and safety in accordance with relevant privacy laws, regulations, and policies.
Only collect and disclose the minimum amount of PII regarding COVID-19 necessary to persons with an authorized need to know.
Actively minimize the amount of data sharing so as to safeguard the PII for access by those persons with a need to know.
Examples of PII
Recall Roster – names linked with phone numbers and email addresses
Test Result - employee reports positive test results for COVID to his/her supervisor
**For these uses, this is not patient info, but is considered employment- and readiness-related info. Therefore, this info not protected health info under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), but should be protected as PII consistent with the Privacy Act.
PII Best Practices
Limit Distribution of PII to those who have a valid, need to know.
Employ good data security practices – encrypting email transmission of PII (NIPR, SIPR, or JWICs).
Do Not transmit names, social security numbers, personal phone numbers, or health or readiness status via unencrypted email.
Do Not use personal email accounts to transmit PII.
Do Not use collaboration platforms to communicate PII (work-related blog or instant message system).
Do Not Post recall roster or excel spreadsheets with PII to internal shared drives, SharePoint, or similar sites WITHOUT proper safeguards and role-based access restrictions.
HIPAA Rules do not apply to employment records.
A: The Epidemiology Reference Lab at the United States Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine (USAFSAM) at Wright Patterson AFB (WPAFB) is the only AF Clinical Laboratory chosen by the Defense Health Agency to process test samples from DoD MTF’s.
The 21st Medical Group moved to utilizing USAFSAM last week due to noticing significant delays in receiving results from state and private labs. It is our hope that centralizing the testing at USAFSAM will speed up the time it takes to get confirmatory diagnosis. USAFSAM is working around the clock and curtailing some routine lab processing in order to focus efforts on returning COVID-19 results as quickly as possible.
The goal is to have results within 72-96 hours. Medics are checking for results 7 days/week in order to ensure results are returned as quickly as possible to the member and guide leadership decision making
A: In order to help units classify service members in isolation or quarantine, ASIMS has modified the quarter form to allow for longer duration only for COVID-19 concerns. ASIMS now allows quarters for 7 days or 14 days with and without symptoms. At 21 MDG, we will use ASIMS for quarters the following way effective 25 Mar 2020:
1) Any member who becomes a Person Undergoing Investigation will be given “7 days with symptoms”
2) Any member who has a positive COVID-19 test will be given “14 days with symptoms”. Members will be assessed daily for early return to duty.
3) Any member who has a negative COVID-19 test will be returned to duty by quarters cancelation.
4) Any member who has close contact with a confirmed positive COVID-19 patient will be placed on “14 days without symptoms”
5) Any members who require quarters for other medical reasons will receive 24 hours, 48 hours, or 72 hours. No quarters will be given for more than 72 hours. This will not be used for social distancing or restriction of movement. Leadership should be receiving quarters notifications via e-mail when quarters are placed and when canceled. Leadership can also review their members on quarters but accessing the ASIMS website. For all members who are seen off base and are tested for COVID-19, they should call appointment line 719-526-2273 opt 1 and schedule a virtual visit with their PCM to review COVID-19 testing. The PCM will verify care received and determine whether quarters are warranted.
A: Maximize electronic means of communication (Facetime, Skype, Google Duo, FB Messenger, personal email without PII/HIPPA). If face to face interaction is required, do not enter domicile, maintain a greater than six foot distance, and ask symptomatic individual to wear a mask.
A: Personnel tested by the 21 MDG and/or 21 MDG beneficiaries.
PUI – Quarters 7 days w/symptoms
Close Contact w/positive COVID-19 – tracked by 21 MDG Public Health and placed on Quarters for 14 days without symptoms Positive COVID-19 - AD, GS, and Family (on base residence) will be notified by PCM. 21 MDG CAT will initiate chain of command notification to include 21 MDS/CC for all personnel assigned to SAFB, Installation CC, and Grp/CC
** For anyone receiving off base care, reporting results incumbent on member
A: The current policy is that laptops need to be connected to the AFNet every 30 days to stay network compliant. The 690 NSS/AFIN Mission Assurance Center is looking into a temporary exemption of this policy given the current situation. Per 690 Network Security Squadron, all standard security practices (patching) remain in effect and government laptops do receive patches through VPN connections; however, with the VPN limitations, patching efficiency/effectiveness may be degraded. The length of time required to receive these patches is dependent on the number of patches, network connection, and other processes running on the computer. For individuals that VPN daily, an hour or two should be suffice.
Answer: DISA is assessing how formally/technically implement that. If implemented, the 50 SW CAT and or the 50 SCS will develop a plan to mitigate impact to our teleworkers.
A: Yes! Your government laptops MUST be plugged back into the same docking station or Ethernet port used previously. Any laptop plugged into a new location will cause the port to be disabled and will require 50 SCS technicians to support. Also, depending on the number of patches the laptop needs, it may take a significant amount of time to boot back up once returning to the office. All teleworkers should plan accordingly
A: With thousands of Airmen now in a telework environment, please login/logout of shared resources when not needed and consider what remote work can be accomplished off-line or during nontraditional hours. Current VPN capacity is fully utilized during CONUS daylight hours. As expanded remote capabilities are available, they will be formally announced.
A: Pregnant women are at higher risk for developing complications from respiratory illnesses, such influenza. At this time, COVID-19 does not elevate that risk enough to warrant additional measures. Pregnant women should follow the same recommendations being given to the general public. Women who have high-risk pregnancies should consult with their obstetrician for additional recommendations.
At this time, there is no evidence that indicates pregnant women are at increased risk from COVID19. At this time, no newborns have tested positive for COVID-19 who were born to COVID-19 positive mothers. The virus has not been found in amniotic fluid suggesting that it can’t spread to unborn children. Additionally, the virus has not been found in breast milk so breastfeeding is felt to be safe.
1) Pregnant women should practice social distancing, practice good respiratory and hand hygiene, and avoid infectious people.
2) If pregnant woman develops fevers, cough, and/or shortness of breath, they should contact their obstetrician to determine appropriate evaluation.
3) Partners should consider performing activities to limit the pregnant patient’s exposure, such as shopping for food.
4) Partners have no limitations. If they develop symptoms of COVID-19, they should isolate away from pregnant partner until they have cleared the virus.
5) Pregnant women can still work. If possible, measures to provide social distancing are recommended. Pregnant women should avoid sick co-workers and the work environment should encourage sick employees to not come in.
A: At this time the existing literature is unclear as to whether ibuprofen has any impact on COVID19 severity. If individuals with heart or kidney disease were to test positive for COVID-19, recommend discussing alternative medications with their primary care manager.
U.S. Air Force COVID-19 Updates/Information
Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19)
What the U.S. Government is Doing
Coronavirus: DoD Response
Colorado Department of Public Health
U.S. Northern Command: Coronavirus Updates
DoD Travel Restriction FAQs
CDC Travel Advisories
March 11, 2020 – Department of Defense Guidance for Personnel Traveling During the Novel Coronavirus Outbreak
March 11, 2020 – Travel Restrictions for DoD Components in Response to Coronavirus Disease 2019
CDC on Twitter
CDC on Facebook
CDC on Instagram
Services by appointment only, (719) 567-3920
Closed until further notice.
Chaplain Services: Call the Command Post at (719) 567-2181 to be connected to a chaplain:
Wing Chaplain cell: (719) 331-4708
STAR Chaplain cell: (719) 644-1685
Services by appointment only, (719) 467-2010
Services by appointment only, (719) 567-5065
Limited to Building 300, 400 and 50th Space Wing essential personnel only.
Closed, including after-hours access.
Cancelled until further notice.
FSS: Services by appointment only, (719) 567-4740
The 50th Space Wing Legal Office is open Mon- Fri 7;30 a.m. - 4:30 p.m. Powers of attorney and notaries are done on a walk-in basis during those hours. Wills and legal assistance are by appointment only. If you have a deployment related issue or need to contact a member of the staff, call: DSN 560-5050, Commercial 719-567-5050 or email 50SPWJA@us.af.mil for assistance.
Services by appointment only, call ahead if you are experiencing Coronavirus-like symptoms, (719) 526-2273 or (719) 524-2273
MPF: Services by appointment only, (716) 567-5901
Effective 1 April, the Schriever AFB pharmacy will have reduced hours from 0730-1400 Mon. - Fri.
Creating an Annual Appraisal
Completing Employee Input