Spring semester preparations and COVID

MSUM Colleagues and Students,

As we prepare to begin a new semester, it’s important that all of us do our part to keep our MSUM community safe as the trajectory of the pandemic continues to evolve with the rapid spread of the omicron variant.

Indoor mask mandate 
* The indoor mask mandate remains in effect.

Vaccination
* The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has strengthened its recommendation on booster doses recommending that everyone over the age of 18 get a booster shot either 6 months after their initial Pfizer or Moderna series or 2 months after their initial Johnson & Johnson vaccine. Individuals who are vaccinated and boosted are much less likely to experience severe symptoms from both the Delta and Omicron variants.
* Clay County Public Health offers weekly vaccine clinics to include booster shots. 

Testing
* Given the vaccine’s effectiveness, fully vaccinated individuals who contract the Omicron variant may experience mild cold-like symptoms or no symptoms at all. Therefore, regular testing is essential to identifying and isolating positive cases. I urge all students and employees returning to campus after time away to test before coming on to campus, after any possible exposure to COVID, and at the first sign of symptoms.  

Reporting
* If you test positive, please report your test results using the appropriate form for students or employees.

Quarantine/Isolation Guidelines
* The CDC’s updated guidance shortens isolation and quarantine times for COVID-19 in the general public. The Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) hopes to receive clarification from the CDC shortly on how this new guidance affects colleges and universities. Once MDH provides updates for higher education, we will follow their guidance and implement the appropriate quarantine/isolation guidelines. 

I wish you all a safe, successful, and rewarding semester, and I thank you in advance for making the safety of our Dragon Family a top priority.

With Dragon Pride,
Anne

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