Duke University Athletics has announced health and safety protocols for men’s and women’s basketball events at Cameron Indoor Stadium this season. The policy has been developed in consultation with medical experts at Duke as well as local and state officials.
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The message below is being sent to all Duke undergraduate students.
Wednesday, September 15, 2021
We, like you, are pleased to see that the number of new COVID cases on campus has been declining in the past two weeks. This is no doubt due to the actions that each of us has taken as we continue to adjust to the constraints that Delta has added to our Fall 2021 semester. As we have learned, however, the situation can change quickly, so we need to make sure that we do not let our guard down completely.
The university released updated guidance on Monday and we’re writing to provide more specific information for undergraduates. Please note that while some of the guidelines are changing, others are continuing.
Guidelines that have been modified:
- Masking is no longer required outdoors in most circumstances on the Duke campus, though masks are still strongly recommended in outdoor settings with a gathering of people. Masks will continue to be required for large outdoor events on campus and must still be used indoors in classrooms and public spaces.
- Faculty have largely returned to in-person teaching.
Guidelines that are continuing:
- Indoor masking is required, including in all areas of the residence halls (except your assigned room/suite/apartment). Along with the vaccine, masking is the most effective strategy to reduce the spread of COVID-19.
- Indoor seating at Duke Dining facilities remains limited.Outdoor group dining will still be available across campus. Thank you for making use of the tents on East and West!
- Student organization programs with 50 or more attendees need to be registered and approved through DukeGroups in consultation with UCAE. This continues a practice established last academic year. Suggestions for how to host a safer event include providing pre-packaged food, allowing for a virtual option, remaining masked, and thinking creatively about seating options that allow for different levels of comfort (spaced out blankets, small groups of 4-5 chairs, etc.). Events should be held outside when possible and, if an event is not approved before the event is to take place, event hosts should plan to hold it virtually.
- Undergraduate students hosting informal social gatherings on- or off-campus must ensure attendees are fully masked and limit attendance to no more than 50 people. Hosting larger and/or unmasked events while this policy is in place will be considered a violation of the Undergraduate Student COVID-19 Policy Plan and will result in disciplinary action for hosts and possibly for attendees.
Our data show that what we’re doing is working and we encourage you to continue making decisions that support the health and wellness of our community, especially those who cannot be vaccinated. Community and connection are vitally important and we’ll continue our efforts to support all students during this time.
We know most undergraduates are getting into a solid routine at this point in the semester, with classes and commitments keeping you engaged. Please remember that connection is critical; we encourage all of you to find ways to connect safely with one another, with faculty and mentors, and to seek out campus activities and opportunities where you can explore and have fun.
Well done, all, and let’s continue the good work.
Gary Bennett, Vice Provost of Undergraduate Education
Mary Pat McMahon, Vice Provost of Student Affairs
Dear Students, Faculty and Staff:
On Thursday, Aug. 12, the FDA reviewed and authorized an expansion of its emergency use authorization for the currently available mRNA COVID-19 vaccines produced by Pfizer and Moderna. This action is designed to allow immunosuppressed individuals to receive an extra dose of the vaccine.
We are closely monitoring these developments. Before we administer any additional doses of authorized vaccine, Duke experts will review all available safety and efficacy data to ensure the science supports its use. The CDC Advisory Committee on Immunization Practice is meeting on Friday, Aug. 13, to review the data.
In anticipation of this expansion of emergency use authorization, we are preparing for Duke to participate in the equitable and efficient distribution of the additional dose to the immunosuppressed population. We expect to learn more during the upcoming CDC/ACIP review process about these patients, as well as specific guidance for administering an additional dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.
We are encouraged by the authorization of this additional dose to help us keep immunosuppressed patients safe and protected from COVID-19. Once the expansion is approved, we will notify all our team members, patients and the community of the qualifying criteria and how to schedule their additional dose of the vaccine. (UPDATE: The CDC has now issued criteria for those moderately to severely immunocompromised who are recommended for a third dose of the mRNA vaccine. See qualifying criteria link above.)
We hope this early information helps you understand how Duke is preparing for the distribution of the additional dose of the COVID-19 vaccine to the qualifying patient population once it is available. If you have questions, you can contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Please continue to take every means to reduce the spread of infection and protect yourself, your loved ones and our Duke community. Get vaccinated, wear a mask, wash your hands, avoid crowded, poorly ventilated indoor spaces, stay at least six feet apart from others, and stay home and get tested when you are feeling ill. Thank you for all you are doing to keep yourself, your family and our community safe.
Vice President, Administration, Duke University
Carol Epling, MD, MSPH
Assistant Professor in Family Medicine and Community Health
Gail Shulby, RN, MA, CPPS
Chief of Staff to the Executive Vice President, Duke Health
Cameron R. Wolfe, MBBS (Hons), MPH, FIDSA
Associate Professor of Medicine, Infectious Diseases, Duke Health
Co-Leaders of the COVID-19 Vaccination Planning Work Group
You are receiving this message because you are enrolled as a visiting student in one or more Duke courses for the fall semester.
We look forward to welcoming you to campus soon for the start of the semester. We are writing today to outline what you can expect related to Duke COVID-19 entry testing and other COVID protocols this semester. All visiting students are subject to Duke’s COVID-19 protocols.
All students must complete an entry test for COVID-19 prior to the Fall 2021 semester. Entry testing will be by appointment only through August 23 (with walk-in testing available after that day); all students should sign up for an entry testing slot, which you can do here. (If you are able, please sign up for a timeslot during the week of August 9. We anticipate the week of August 16 to be our busiest.)
Entry testing will be available in Penn Pavilion on West Campus, most Mondays through Fridays in August between 8 a.m. – 4 p.m. EST. Shortly before your test date, you will be emailed a parking pass for the Card Lot, which you can use while you are being tested in Penn Pavilion. Per the recent university announcement, please bring a mask to your entry test.
You will only be notified of your test result if you test positive for COVID-19. Put another way, no news is good news.
Once you have completed your entry test, you will enter Duke’s surveillance testing program for the remainder of the fall semester.
If you have not yet received your COVID-19 vaccination or do not have a Duke-approved medical or religious exemption, you’ll be directed to check in with Student Health.
Students have until Monday, August 23 to complete the university’s vaccination requirement. Failure to do so may result in the revocation of your campus access. More information about the vaccination requirement and how to update your vaccination status can be found at the Duke COVID vaccine website.
After entry testing is complete, all students will participate in Duke’s surveillance testing program this fall, which helps us monitor any transmission of the virus within the Duke community. The frequency of how often you’re called in for testing will depend on a number of factors, including your vaccination status and whether you’ve been potentially exposed to the virus. Students living on campus will be tested twice a week. Students living off campus can expect to be called for surveillance testing once per week. Students who have approved medical or religious exemptions can expect to be tested more frequently.
Like entry testing, you’ll only be notified of your result if you test positive for COVID-19. If you don’t hear anything, that means your test was negative.
You can find more information on surveillance testing, including hours and locations, on the Duke United website. If you have additional questions, please follow the instructions regarding connecting with your designated contact person.
Get your Mobile DukeCard
If you’re new to campus, your ﬁrst DukeCard will be on your iPhone or Android device. First, please visit the DukeCard website for photo specs and instructions to upload your photo online. Due to the current global chip shortage, we are asking students to “go mobile” if possible unless a physical card is needed. Once your photo has been approved and you have completed entry testing, as outlined above, you can add your DukeCard to your iPhone or Android device. Detailed instructions are available on the mobile DukeCard site.
If you need a physical DukeCard in addition to the mobile DukeCard, you can visit the DukeCard office to obtain one. Instructions for setting up an appointment can be found on the DukeCard appointment site.
Please note: Students who are a part of the Schools of Medicine and Nursing OR need access to Duke Health buildings, including those with labs, should follow the instructions given to them by their departments to obtain a DukeCard for access to those buildings.
As a reminder, all plans, processes, and guidelines–including testing processes, masking, and other protocols–remain subject to change based on the continually evolving pandemic landscape. Be sure to check out Duke’s COVID-19 website for information and updates. Thank you for your continued partnership in helping keep the Duke and Durham communities safer. We look forward to seeing you on campus this fall.
The message above was sent by the Office of the Registrar to all non-degree students.