The Weekly COVID Newsletter provides the latest information about COVID-19 for the University community. It will be published on Fridays throughout the semester.
Rapid Testing Has Arrived
On Wednesday, April 7, the University added rapid tests to its surveillance (routine) testing program. Students who live on campus or are in high-contact programs have been getting one PCR every other week; now, in the alternating weeks they will get two tests, allowing the University Health Center to more quickly spot potential outbreaks and take action to prevent the spread of the virus. The number of rapid tests given each week will be reported on our COVID-19 dashboard starting next Friday.
As a reminder, any member of the University community who wants to be tested for COVID-19 can get a PCR test on campus. Appointments are offered on Mondays 9 a.m. – 3 p.m. and Wednesdays 11 a.m. – 7 p.m. at Webster Hall. Register here.
Another option is to use is the Passaic County testing site on our campus, open Saturdays, 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. in Lot 60. Use 147 Clove Road, Little Falls, NJ 07424 as your address, so that the University Health Center will receive a copy of your results. Questions? Call the Passaic County Department of Health Hotline at 973-881-2790.
Remember, when you get tested, be sure to report it on Hawk Check.
Vaccinations Are Opening Up!
As of Monday, April 19, all individuals in New Jersey ages 16 and older will be eligible for vaccination. Note: People who are 16 or 17 years old are only eligible for the Pfizer vaccine.
All higher education personnel are eligible to receive vaccines now, and we continue to strongly encourage everyone to get vaccinated as soon as possible.
Additionally, employees who live in New York can visit the NY State COVID-19 website. Vaccinations are now available to all New York residents 16 and older.
Once you have been vaccinated, please remember to report it on Hawk Check.
Question of the Week: How Can I Keep Myself and Others Safe After I am Fully Vaccinated?
Every week, hundreds more members of our Montclair State community report getting vaccinated. That’s good news, but it is important to remember that we all must continue to follow the University’s rules about safety, including wearing masks and observing social distancing.
Why? Those who have been vaccinated might be spreading the virus without having symptoms. “If vaccinated people don’t continue to wear a face mask until more people are considered fully vaccinated, they could cause the virus to keep circulating,” reports the Cleveland Clinic. “Getting vaccinated means you’re much less likely to get sick and develop symptoms yourself, so it’s critical that we protect others while they wait for their turn to receive the vaccine.”
NJ Travel Advisory Updated
New Jersey updated its travel advisory earlier this week to allow fully vaccinated people (or those who have recovered from COVID-19 in the last three months) to be exempt from the requirement to quarantine upon returning to the state.
The University continues to require all students, employees, contractors and visitors to report on Hawk Check if they’ve returned from travelling outside the state (other than trips to New York, Connecticut, Pennsylvania or Delaware). One of our health care professionals will call you and discuss whether you meet the criteria to be exempt from post-travel quarantine.
If you are planning to travel out of the region, before scheduling your travel, please discuss your anticipated plans and the need to quarantine when you return with your supervisor. Some employees may be able to work remotely, based on the nature of their duties and the operating needs of their unit, but that may not be possible for everyone.
The CDC still requires that you show a negative test result or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 before boarding a flight to the United States when you’ve traveled outside the country, and the University will continue to require you to quarantine upon your return from an international trip.
There’s an App for That
The State of New Jersey’s COVID Alert NJ smartphone app, which has been downloaded by more than 650,000 users, can alert you if you’ve been in contact with someone who has tested positive. It has a pop-up feature to remind you to report how you’re feeling each day (and you can use that reminder as a way to remember to do Hawk Check, too).
For More Information
For more detailed information about Montclair State’s response to the pandemic, please visit the Red Hawk Restart website, which has links to our 70-page restart plan, to Hawk Check, the COVID dashboard, and many other resources. The Restart FAQs site has answers to frequently asked questions about health, technology, facilities and human resources topics, and the University Health Center’s COVID-19 site offers health and wellness tips and information about how you can get tested.
Thank you for reading the Weekly COVID Newsletter, a production of the Office of University Communications and Marketing. Comments and suggestions may be sent to Vice President Joseph Brennan, email@example.com.