Coronavirus: Current information
This website contains information from Bern University of Applied Sciences about the effects of the coronavirus pandemic on university operations and about specific measures taken by the BFH. For general information for the public, please refer to the information provided by the Federal Office of Public Health FOPH and the canton of Bern.
Status: 1.4.2022, 10 am
=> NEW: Testing at BFH
Repetitive testing will no longer be financed by the federal government. As a consequence, testing at BFH will be discontinued from Monday, 4 April 2022.
However, test kits may still be obtained from the drop-off points, provided there is a counter, and sent directly to the laboratory in exceptional situations, e.g. when a test is necessary as part of a course or employment at BFH (such as for a trip abroad).
A name, email address and justification for receiving the test must be given when a test is issued.
The decision as to whether a test will be issued should be clarified with a supervisor; alternatively, the person in charge of the module will make a decision together with the departmental head of teaching.
In these cases, the test will be paid for by BFH. Tests performed outside these circumstances cannot be reclaimed through expense reports.
-> For further information, check the ‘Testing’ FAQ.
Certificate and mask requirement is lifted
- In accordance with the Federal Council decision of 16 February 2022, the certificate and mask requirement has been lifted. This applies to all areas of BFH (teaching, work, remaining operations).
- Masks may of course continue to be worn on a voluntary basis. In certain situations this is also advisable, e.g. for the protection of vulnerable persons or in confined spaces.
- Libraries and cafeterias are accessible with no restrictions.
- Internal and external events at BFH and drinks receptions can be held without restrictions.
- It is essential that you continue to take responsibility. Continue to observe the FOPH hygiene and conduct regulations and get tested if you have any symptoms. If you contract COVID, still remain at home for five days (from symptom onset). We consider a positive test result to carry the same weight as a medical certificate.
Classes for bachelor’s and master’s programmes and in continuing education
Teaching for bachelor’s and master’s programmes and in continuing education will generally take place on site. BFH considers itself to be a face-to-face university, which means that no digital alternative is required for face-to-face courses.
Work from home
The mobile working policy applies, enabling staff to work from home up to 50% of the time. Staff can find more information about this on the intranet.
Updated: 21.2.2022, 4 pm
‘Corona Regulations 2’: these came into force in August 2020 and regulate exceptions in teaching and continuing education. They take priority where they differ from previous regulations. This applies in particular to regulations governing competency assessments and exams, teaching arrangements, semester dates, delivery of continuing education, leave of absence, termination of matriculation and reimbursement of fees. The coronavirus regulations allow BFH to depart from the standard regulations in justifiable instances. Departures must be proportionate and preserve equality of rights and they must be announced in advance.
See in particular section 2 of the framework safety concept.
Teaching and training
Updated: 1.4.2022, 10 am
You can find details of the hygiene and safety measures under ‘University operations’ and in sections 2 and 5 of the framework safety concept.
No. Copyright and data protection apply. Input by and images of lecturers/students must be treated as confidential. Work by others may only be used within the closed circle of the class.
As a result of coronavirus (isolation), we will not be able to hold an exam/competency assessment. What happens now?
The general regulations that apply in the case of absence from examinations due to illness apply here. Competency assessments can be postponed or the time allowed for them can be extended as appropriate. In the case of student projects (with the exception of bachelor’s and master’s theses), a new or adapted assignment may be requested. Students will be informed in writing in advance of any variations.
Are you planning to come to BFH for an exchange semester or to take a degree programme but are not sure how to proceed given the current situation? We will keep you informed of all the latest developments here so that you can plan your perfect exchange.
- Entry requirements
Please note the rules for entering Switzerland and the list of countries with a variant of concern.
- Anyone wishing to complete an education or training programme in Switzerland (longer than 90 days) must submit an application to the migration office.
- Third-country nationals must submit their application to the Swiss diplomatic mission responsible for their place of residence.
- EU/EFTA nationals must submit their application to the cantonal migration authority responsible for their future place of residence in Switzerland.
- As an EU/EFTA national, you may enter the country once you have received your pre-approved residence permit. As a third-country national, you may enter the country once you have an entry permit with a visa issued by Switzerland.
- More information
State Secretariat for Migration / Federal Office of Public Health
If you have any questions, please contact the BFH International Relations Office:
Contact details for the departments’ International Offices
Are you planning to study abroad? Make sure to keep checking the information provided by your exchange university and the travel regulations for the country in question. If necessary, contact the International Office.
If you have any questions about your classes/your timetable, contact the person in charge of your module and/or your department’s Head of Degree Programme.
Updated: 1.4.2022, 10 am
Please take note of the BFH framework safety concept and the FAQs below.
We strongly recommend that you are vaccinated before travelling abroad. Find out from the FOPH about the regulations in force for travelling abroad. If you need a Covid 19 certificate abroad in connection with your work, any costs for a test will be reimbursed by your employer.
Pregnancy: paid short-term leave?
Pregnant, non vaccinated members of staff may be granted paid short-term leave if their doctor has instructed them not to attend the workplace because of the coronavirus risk and they are unable to work from home.
Their entitlement to paid short-term leave is not affected by any annual overtime they may have accrued. This regulation also applies to members of staff working on an RAZ basis (positive ILV balance).
I have been offered the coronavirus vaccine. Can I record the vaccination appointment as working hours?
No, the time credit for vaccination has been removed.
Symptoms an illness
Any staff member or student who is experiencing obvious symptoms such as fever, feeling feverish, sore throat, coughing, shortness of breath, muscle pain, or sudden loss of sense of smell and/or taste, should follow the relevant instructions on what to do next: FOPH - Protect yourself and other
Updated: 4.4.2022, 10 am
Questions about the testing process
Repetitive testing will no longer be funded by the federal government and testing at the BFH will be discontinued as of Monday, 4 April 2022.
In exceptional cases, for example if a test is required as part of the studies or employment at the BFH (e.g. travel abroad with compulsory testing), a test kit can be obtained at the drop-off points with regular counter service and sent directly to the laboratory.
Staff members clarify with their supervisors whether they may obtain a test for a specific case and then receive a test kit at a drop-off point upon self-declaration and stating their name, e-mail address and reason.
For student purposes, the module supervisors decide in consultation with the Head of Teaching at the department. The Head of Teaching latter sends an e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org. The students can then collect their test kits. Here, too, the name, e-mail address and reason must be given when ordering.
The following BFH locations serve as test collection and drop-off points (listed alphabetically):
- Brückenstrasse 73 (reception)
- Eigerplatz 5 (reception)
- Falkenplatz 24 (reception)
- Fellerstrasse 11, Bern (ground floor reception)
- Hallerstrasse 8
- Holzikofenweg 8
- Murtenstrasse 10
- Ostermundigenstrasse 103 (first floor reception)
- Schwarztorstrasse 48 (reception)
- Schwarztorstrasse 102 (reception)
- Wankdorffeldstrasse 102 (reception)
- Burg Biel, Jakob-Rosius-Strasse 16 (reception/administrative office, first floor)
- Quellgasse 21 (reception)
- Rockhall, Seevorstadt 103
- Rolex, Höheweg 80
- Swiss Literature Institute Biel/Bienne, Seevorstadt 99 (reception/administrative office, first floor)
- Solothurnstrasse 102
- Gsteig, Pestalozzistrasse 20 (reception)
- Hauptstrasse 127
- Länggasse 85 (HAFL, reception)
Yes, you need your health insurance number for the initial registration of the test. If you do not have one (e.g. if you live abroad) or cannot find your card, you can enter "0" 20 times instead of the number.
There is an internet address under the QR code (e.g. mtkb.ch/fppnktyw). The test can be registered at this address. Please note: A test can only be registered once.
The lab refers to a maximum of 24 hours from receipt of the sample.
The data is transferred by the test takers directly via a website to the laboratory “ender diagnostics, which carries out the tests at the BFH (a procedure similar to registering in a restaurant). For the processing of personal data, consent is required at the time of registration. In order to exclude misuse, the BFH keeps lists of the persons who receive a test. After billing, the lists are destroyed. The BFH does not receive any data on tested persons from the laboratory. Therefore, no link can be established between the BFH's list of persons and the test result. The BFH receives an evaluation of the number of tests carried out, the positive, negative and invalid test results. If there is a legal basis and an obligation to do so, the laboratory informs the cantonal contact tracing (cantonal medical office) in the event of a positive test result and provides it with the contact details for making contact.
In case of a negative test result, a link will be sent to download the COVID certificate.
The cost of testing at BFH is borne by the BFH. Employees and students have to cover any costs arising from tests taken outside the BFH testing programme themselves.
People who have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last three months cannot take a PCR test, as this would nullify the test result.
Yes, testing in exceptional cases is also possible for people who have already been vaccinated.