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College Offers Courses to Help Employers Safely Reopen and Help Residents Become Contact Tracers to Prevent the Spread of the Coronavirus
(Delaware and Chester Counties, PA • June 2, 2020)—Responding to the needs of area employers and the community, Delaware County Community College’s Corporate College is providing two new educational programs. The first is a new, synchronous online course that provides employers training in COVID-19 awareness and mitigation strategies—techniques that involve identifying people who might have the coronavirus and ensuring they do not interact with others. The second program is a series of courses that will teach residents how to do contact tracing—identifying contacts and ensuring they do not interact with others to protect communities from further spread of the coronavirus.
The first program, COVID-19-What You Need to Know and Do, is a two-hour, training seminar that will teach employer supervisors and managers protocols and policies to minimize COVID-19 transmission, using best practices and U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. This seminar will provide a general overview of COVID-19, its routes of transmission and its symptoms. It also will address industrial hygiene fundamentals; risk exposure groups; basic infection prevention and mitigation techniques; use of respirators vs. face masks; proper ways to clean and disinfect; and other essential topics. The seminar was designed to help supervisors and managers create a "what to do" plan for close contact and/or casual contact exposure. It also will provide recommendations and resources to help supervisors make facility modifications and identify the number of employees and/or students allowed in certain areas as a way of mitigating risk.
Michael Menz, a certified industrial hygienist and certified hazardous material manager with 32 years of experience with industrial hygiene and environmental consulting, is teaching the seminar. He has developed and delivered hundreds of courses on topics such as right-to-know compliance; indoor air quality investigations; U.S. Environmental Protection Agency asbestos inspection and management planning; industrial hygiene sampling; mold assessor training; silica exposure assessments; mercury in rubberized gymnasium flooring management; lead dust examination clearances; hazardous waste inventories; and other topics.
The second program, the Contact Tracing, Interviewing and Digital Records Career Program, is a 100-hour, online series of courses that will teach students the skills needed to effectively contact trace. Students will learn medical terminology, information about infectious diseases, how to investigate and monitor coronavirus cases, calculating and reporting healthcare statistics, and how to navigate the internet, fill out forms, attach files and use Excel spreadsheets. This program is timely because Governor Wolf has said he plans to create a Commonwealth Civilian Coronavirus Corps, as well as hire and deploy contact tracers/interviewers to help Pennsylvania prevent the further spread of COVID-19. Community health care careers are expected to grow over the next decade and they pay family-sustaining wages.
For more information about these courses, call (610) 355-7146 or email Michelle Wallace.