Section 2 - General Policies



Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) is a fatal disease which has become a nationwide public health problem.

Lamar University acknowledges the seriousness of this problem. In health related matters such as this, the University follows the guidelines of recognized authorities including the National Center for Disease Control, the United States Public Health Service, the Texas Department of Health, and American College of Health Association. Furthermore, the University shall conform its actions to the Texas Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Act and other law.

There is no current evidence that individuals infected with Human Immunodeficiency Virus (HIV), the AIDS Virus, can infect other individuals by casual contact. Accordingly, there is no reason to exclude individuals with the Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome (AIDS) from social or cultural activities. Therefore, on the basis of current knowledge of the disease, individuals sharing common living space, work or study areas, libraries, classrooms, recreational facilities, and theaters do not represent a problem or public threat to the campus community.

Students and employees of the University who may become infected with the AIDS virus will not be excluded from enrollment or employment or restricted in their access to University services or facilities, unless medically based judgments in individual cases establish that exclusion or restriction is necessary to the welfare of the individual or of other members of the University community or of the public.

When circumstances arise that require review, the President will seek the advice of the Director of University Health Services, the attending physician, the University Health Committee, and any other relevant parties. An opportunity will be provided for any person involved to discuss his or her circumstances. Members of the University Health Committee will be available to review the issues and provide recommendations to the President for resolution.

In the event of public inquiry concerning University policy, programs, problems, or statistics related to AIDS on campus, the Executive Director of Public Affairs will serve as the official spokesperson for the University and will enlist the cooperation of the Director of University Health Services and the University Health Committee as necessary to prepare an appropriate response. All inquiries from the press, elected public officials, or the public in general will be referred to the spokesperson. The medical records of individuals shall remain confidential, but public information shall be disclosed upon request in accordance with the Texas Public Information Act, the Family Education Rights and Privacy Act, and the Texas Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Act. General information and national statistics considered public knowledge are not subject to restriction.

In the event an individual is identified with AIDS, ARC, or a positive test for the HIV antibody, appropriate existing University resources for emotional, educational, social, and medical support will be made available to all concerned individuals.

Persons who know, or have reasonable basis for believing, that they are infected with the AIDS virus are expected to seek expert advice about their health circumstances and are obligated, ethically and legally, to conduct themselves responsibly in accordance with that knowledge for the protection of other members of the University community and others they may come in contact with in the course of University activities.

The University shall carefully observe the safety guidelines established by the U.S. Public Health Services for the handling of blood and other body fluids and secretions, both in all health care facilities maintained on the campus, and in other institutional contexts in which such fluids or secretions may be encountered (e.g., teaching and experimental laboratories).