August 15, 2022
A Message from Sr. Christine De Vinne, OSU, PhD, President
As we look forward to the formal start of Fall 2022 semester, here are some changes to our campus health and safety protocols. They reflect CDC updates effective August 11, 2022 and include reminders about COVID to manage your risk of infection.
The CDC currently lists Cuyahoga County as an area with high transmission rates. At the same time, health care professionals report that COVID’s effects are lessened by vaccines and the disease is becoming more endemic. The Ursuline community has done its part by achieving a high vaccination rate. As we start the semester, be sure you are current on your vaccinations including boosters.
Our Campus COVID Task Force, now renamed the Campus Health Team, continues to monitor Cuyahoga County statistics and CDC guidelines. Currently, masks remain recommended but optional in all buildings including residence halls with these exceptions:
- Mask wearing is strongly recommended indoors for those not up to date with vaccines and those with underlying health conditions. How do I know if you’re up to date? Click: Stay Up to Date with Your COVID-19 Vaccines | CDC
- Mask wearing remains mandatory in art studio labs, science labs and Nursing Resource Center (NRC) including its main skills lab, health assessment lab, and simulation room where individuals are near each other for extended periods. As part of the learning experience, the NRC models real-life clinical environments which require masking.
- Mask wearing may be requested in a meeting or classroom, due to proximity or individual vulnerability.
- Any time you are asked to wear a mask, we count on you to do so. Exercising respect is one of our four core values.
- Students and faculty in clinical settings must comply with those facilities’ masking requirements.
- You are expected to wear a mask on campus for five days AFTER returning from five days of isolation.
- Athletes must comply abide by any NCAA regulations.
NEW CDC GUIDELINES FOR EXPOSURE, ISOLATION, TESTING & MASKING
On August 11, 2022, the CDC announced streamlined guidelines for isolation: CDC streamlines COVID-19 guidance to help the public better protect themselves and understand their risk | CDC Online Newsroom | CDC
If you have been exposed and have no symptoms, you are no longer required to quarantine, but you are to wear a mask for 10 days, monitor your symptoms, and test on day five.
If you develop symptoms, stay home and test:
- If results are positive, isolate for five days.
- If results are negative, you don’t have to quarantine per CDC Guidelines. Of course, if you are feeling ill, you are expected to stay home until you are well enough to return to campus.
We are closely monitoring the rise in Monkeypox cases in Cuyahoga County, and we will provide further guidance as it becomes available.
Fortunately, protocols, like good hand hygiene and disinfecting surfaces, prevent the spread of both COVID-19 and Monkeypox. We will continue to clean and disinfect all common areas, classrooms, and restrooms areas nightly and high-touch areas such as the Athletic Center and the Nursing Resource Center as well as restrooms twice daily. Residential halls are cleaned daily.
We will adjust the frequency of those cleaning schedules as warranted.
Please note that students, faculty, and staff should continue to report COVID symptoms, exposure and positive tests as follows:
- Report symptoms, exposure, or positive COVID test results by completing this COVID Reporting Form
- For questions about COVID, please contact COVIDHelp@ursuline.edu
Faculty & Staff:
- Email Kelli Knaus at firstname.lastname@example.org to report COVID symptoms, exposure, or positive test results.
If you have been exposed to or diagnosed with Monkeypox, please follow the reporting guidelines noted above for COVID.
CDC’s recommendations are updated regularly. The Campus Health Team will monitor any changes and update Ursuline’s policies accordingly. Please check MyUrsuline for the latest information and policies.