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Be smart, stay healthy: vaccines and boosters

Photo by Kathy F. Atkinson

A message to the UD community

To the UD Community:

This is a reminder for all members of the University of Delaware community to protect your health and safety, as well as the wellbeing of your families and friends as we near the completion of the fall semester. As you may know, a new variant of the coronavirus, named Omicron, has emerged in various parts of the world, including the United States. It is critical that we all take steps to promote community health and safety in the coming weeks:

  1. Get vaccinated against COVID-19 or get a booster shot — All students and employees at the University are required to be fully vaccinated, with exemptions for documented medical or religious reasons. Currently, 91% of students and 92% of employees are vaccinated. In addition, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends — and UD strongly encourages — boosters for all adults over 18 once they are at least six months past their Pfizer or Moderna shots or at least two months past the Johnson & Johnson shot. The COVID-19 vaccines are safe and effective, and clinical studies show that boosters elevate your protection well beyond peak levels from the initial doses. Many area pharmacies offer vaccinations and booster shots, and the Hudson State Service Center near campus holds vaccination clinics at no cost every weekday. Walk-ins are welcome. For information, call 302-283-7570. Or visit vaccines.gov to find and schedule your shot.
  2. Upload your COVID-19 vaccination card — Once you have received the vaccine — and again when you get a booster — you need to provide that documentation to the University. Students and employees can use the UD Health Portal to upload an image of their vaccination record. For instructions and other information, visit this FAQ list.
  3. Get the flu vaccine — The flu vaccine is also necessary to prevent serious illness, and it can be administered at the same time as the COVID-19 vaccine. Visit vaccines.gov to find and schedule a flu shot; students can go to Student Health Services.
  4. Get tested for COVID-19 before and after traveling — Tests are widely available and are recommended for travelers to help prevent the spread of the virus, particularly during the holiday break (note for international travelers: all travelers boarding a flight from a foreign country to the United States are required to provide proof of a negative COVID-19 viral test no more than one day before air travel). Travel requirements for Study Abroad and World Scholars students can be found on the Center for Global Programs and Services website. Asymptomatic tests will be provided regularly on the UD campus until Monday, Dec. 20. During Winter Session, regular testing will be available on a reduced schedule. Please visit udel.edu/coronavirus for updated testing information.
  5. Practice smart hygiene — Simple steps are effective at preventing the spread of COVID-19 and the flu: Wear a mask, wash or sanitize your hands, avoid crowded spaces and stay home if you feel sick.
  6. Stay informed — COVID-19 is continually evolving, and the Omicron variant is believed to be more contagious than previous strains. The CDC and other public health authorities are closely monitoring the incidence and spread of the virus around the world, and travel restrictions and other protocols may change quickly in response to the pandemic. The University may update its requirements, as well, so please continue to check your UD email and udel.edu/coronavirus, especially during the holiday break.

This semester’s increase in campus activity and in-person classes has been possible because students, faculty and staff followed necessary health and safety measures to keep COVID-19 case numbers low and slow the spread of the virus in our community. These measures will continue to be necessary well into 2022. If you have questions about COVID-19 requirements and protocols, please visit udel.edu/coronavirus or email coronavirus@udel.edu.

Have a safe and enjoyable holiday break.

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