COVID-19 update for UIC community
In the past several months, we have experienced several large changes as a community: vaccine continues to become increasingly available to campus members, saliva testing capacity has expanded to allow for broader mandatory testing in order to help us detect positive individuals who have no symptoms (who account for about 40% of all infected individuals), and state and local guidance has allowed us to resume hybrid learning.
As we return to campus for more in-person activities, it is crucial for all of us to remain vigilant with our prevention behaviors and remember that we still need to observe:
- Routine mask-wearing: masking is mandatory on UIC’s campus unless you are alone in a private office with the door closed; this does not apply to shared office spaces or cubicles, even if you are 6 feet from coworkers. If you remove your mask to eat, make sure you are greater than 6 feet from others and put your mask back on as soon as you finish eating.
- Please see the CDC’s guidance on improving how your mask functions. This guidance places increased emphasis on ensuring that masks fit snugly, including how to correctly double-mask should you choose to do so to improve mask performance.
- Physical distancing: you should practice physical distancing of 6 feet or greater with anyone who is not a member of your household, even if you are wearing a mask. This applies to trusted friends, family and coworkers.
- Mandatory testing: UIC is expanding saliva testing capacity this semester with a dual-badging system, which combines the health attestation (Healthcheck) with the testing compliance system (Daily Pass). This tool enables our campus to identify COVID-positive individuals who never have symptoms or before they develop symptoms, quickly isolate them and quarantine any individuals they may have exposed.
- Please note, having a recent negative saliva test and a green badge does not mean you could not have become infected and spread the virus to others. It just means you were negative at the moment you tested.
- Vaccination: getting as much of our campus vaccinated as possible is a key component of the public health effort to control COVID-19. Vaccination is safe and effective; if you have concerns about receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, you should contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
- Even if you receive the COVID-19 vaccine, you should still continue all of the prevention behaviors above.
- If you are fully vaccinated (receive both doses of a COVID-19 vaccine and at least two weeks have passed since the second dose) and you are exposed to a COVID-positive person within three months of receiving your second dose, UIC contact tracing will monitor your symptoms for 14 days but no longer require you to quarantine.
- Reporting: if you experience symptoms of COVID-19, test positive for COVID-19, have a close contact exposure to someone with COVID-19, or travel out of state, please inform campus by using the UIC COVID-19 reporting decision tool.
Thank you all for your continued partnership to keep the campus safe and to protect each other!