Students on Clinical Rotations

Pacific University has called home all students who are attending international study abroad or clinical education due to the increasing worldwide travel restrictions. Some programs have also called home students on domestic clinical rotations. For those students who are still attending domestic clinical education rotations, we are revising our prior advice to continue their rotations if allowed by the host healthcare facility.

We are now recommending that our students assess their particular situation and decide whether to continue in domestic clinical education rotations, due to increasing concerns about domestic travel and to support recommended practices to reduce community transmission of the coronavirus through social distancing measures.

Students may consider the following factors in deciding whether or not to stay at their current clinical site:

  1. Has the site communicated any intention to discontinue student rotations, or is the student being regularly asked to be absent from the clinic? If so, the student may want to preempt a final decision and return home now.
  2. Does the student or a member of their household have any underlying conditions that make them more vulnerable to serious COVID-19 disease? If so, the student should return home.
  3. Is the setting of the clinical rotation at high risk for Coronavirus transmission? This could mean that there is a cluster of infections, or that procedures being performed by the student are themselves high risk (e.g., aerosolising procedures, close personal contact with symptomatic patients, etc.)
  4. Is the clinical site greater than driving distance from the student’s permanent address? Students who would have to travel by air or other public transportation to return home may wish to leave their clinical site and return home now.
  5. Note that students may have other important considerations that we have not itemized here and should use their own judgement as to the appropriateness of continuing in their clinical education rotation.

While Pacific University cannot guarantee that students who leave clinical education rotations early, either voluntarily or at the decision of the clinical site, will be able to progress academically or graduate from their program on schedule, we are actively pursuing alternatives to the loss of these degree requirements resulting from the coronavirus/COVID-19 pandemic. We will respect your decision about whether to continue in your domestic clinical education rotation, and we will support you in every way that we can going forward.

If you do decide to voluntarily leave your domestic clinical rotation, please let your program know immediately. Also, if your clinical instructor is able to complete your evaluation before you go, particularly as to whether you have achieved skill competency at entry level practice performance, that will be vital information for us to have on record. Again, please contact your program directly for guidance on the clinical education evaluation that is appropriate for you.