UVA announces changes to COVID-19 policy from Monday
UVA announces changes to COVID-19 policy from Monday

UVA announces changes to COVID-19 policy from Monday

On the heels of the spring break, the University of Virginia announced several updates to their COVID-19 policies, beginning on Monday.

The changes come after “encouraging trends regarding the pandemic, which we hope will give students, faculty and staff the opportunity to enjoy the final weeks of this academic year,” wrote Provost Ian Baucom and Chief Operating Officer JJ Davis on Friday in an e -mail message to the university community.

The announcement is in accordance with the latest Guidance in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Face masks optional

From Monday d. masks will be optional in most cases due. Masks will still be required in class, in UVA Health facilities and on university transit buses.

Masks will be optional in all other indoor environments, “including meeting rooms, office spaces, and research laboratories (masks will continue to be required in laboratory classes),” Baucom and Davis wrote.

They stressed that the change does not prevent anyone from wearing a mask if they feel more comfortable doing so. “We continue to remind members of our community to treat each other with courtesy and respect, while we all make our own decisions about when to wear a mask and when to go without,” they wrote.

Test requirement lifted

With effect from Monday, weekly COVID-19 testing will no longer be required for the small number (around 2%) of unvaccinated UVA students.

“We also plan to phase out the university’s saliva test program,” the email said. “The last day for saliva testing will be Thursday, March 24. Demand for this type of test has fallen sharply due to rising vaccination rates and the availability of home tests, and it will drop even more as our prevalence testing requirements change.”

Academic Division students, faculty, and staff can still pick up free fast antigen home tests at the Student Health and Wellness Pharmacy and the UVA Bookstore Pharmacy.

“The university’s supply of these tests is limited, so we ask members of the community to help us use this resource wisely. In addition to these resources, home tests are widely available at retail pharmacies and online. federal government offers two sets of four free tests, ”Baucom and Davis wrote.

A spring 2022 testing of infographics depicts the university’s updated approach to testing, with useful details about the next step if someone develops symptoms or comes into contact with a positive case.

It is important to note that test policies do not change for UVA Health team members.

Test policies remain for UVA Health faculty, team members and students, including prevalence test procedures for those with COVID-19 vaccine exemptions, “the email noted.

Evidence of vaccination

The latest change, announced in Friday’s email, described the end of the university’s proof-of-vaccination policy at major event venues. This change includes events held at the John Paul Jones Arena, and will also take effect on Monday.

Look forward to

Baucom and Davis ended their message with a prospect for the future regarding all remaining mask requirements.

“University leaders and public health experts continue to evaluate our remaining public health policies with a view to lifting the mask mandate in the near future, hopefully as early as March 28,” they wrote. “We will update the community on that decision next week. As always, if viral conditions change significantly, we will always be ready to change our approach to keep our community safe.

“More than two years since the start of the pandemic, we continue to be very grateful to members of this community for your patience and flexibility as we continue to adapt our public health approach to the current conditions and needs of our community.”

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