18/2 – COVID-19 update for campuses
18/2 – COVID-19 update for campuses

18/2 – COVID-19 update for campuses

February 18, 2022

TO: USC students, faculty and university staff

FR: Sarah Van Orman, Chief Health Officer, USC Student Health

Head of Department of College Health, Keck School of Medicine at USC

RE: COVID-19 update for campuses

The current outlook for the COVID-19 transfer in the spring of 2022 has greatly improved at USC and in LA County since the peak of the winter rise last month. From this week is test positivity rates for our campuses has dropped to 1.31% for students and 0.87% for employees, corresponding to a similar decline in LA County.

We value the efforts of our students, faculty and staff, who have jointly created a protected environment in compliance with the vaccination, booster and test requirements. Vaccination with boosters remains an important contributing factor to protecting our campuses. If you have not yet received a booster, you can still receive it next week USC Pharmacies locations or at detail pages near you. If you have recovered from COVID-19 during the last winter, it is still recommended that you get a booster to complete your immunity.

At this point in the pandemic, we are looking to the future with plans to change protocols that remove mitigation levels as public health orders are revised to lift restrictions.

As advertised on February 16thLos Angeles County removed restrictions on outdoor masking based on improved measurements for hospitalizations and fatalities. Outdoor masking has now also been abolished for university-sponsored events. Masking is required indoors, during transport and at health facilities (including test sites). We expect metrics to continue to get even better in a week more, so we’re planning one repeal of some campus measures scheduled for March 1st.

From 1 March, the university changes the requirements for student monitoring tests, as the first in a step-by-step approach to lifting COVID-19 restrictions. Progress in lifting restrictions at USC will coincide with the revised LADPH Health officer orders released as required by law.

Test: March 1st students who are up to date on their vaccinations (fully vaccinated; and have received a booster if they are currently qualified) are no longer required to test weekly. Test requirements for unvaccinated with approved dispensation (every 72 hours) and persons who are not updated on vaccinations (every 4 days) remain in force. The weekly test cadence is no longer required, but remember that testing remains available to all students, faculties and staff. This service should be used by anyone who is symptomatic; exposed to a positive case of COVID-19; or want to test before / after attending a large gathering, travel or other possible increased risk of exposure.

Further changes on this date include protocols regarding:

  • Gyms: Reservations will no longer be required for general access to USC Village, Lyon Center and HSC Fitness Center Gyms. Please follow the instructions and instructions from Recreational Sports.
  • Guests in residences: Guests will be allowed in campus residences. Please follow the instructions and instructions from Residential Education.

Referring to March 1 transitional guidance for information on what is different (and what remains the same) for COVID-19 safety at this stage. As we prepare for additional phases of lifting restrictions, we share updates and milestone dates with the community. After two years, we recognize that this has been a difficult journey, from our first health warning to the most recent one million test milestones.

We appreciate the hard work, resilience, support and mutual sense of community of our campuses as we move toward a more hopeful spring.

Be safe and fight on!

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