Board Of Trustees Votes Against COVID Vaccine Mandate
In a specially called meeting last week, the Board of Trustees of State Institutions of Higher Learning voted against a mandate to require students and employees at the state’s eight public universities to show proof of vaccination as a condition of employment or enrollment. For additional details, see the IHL news release.
Do Your Part — Be Smart About When to go to the ER
We can all do our part to help our local hospital, Baptist Memorial Hospital – North Mississippi, prioritize emergency visits because of the strain from the Delta variant. Do you have routine or non-urgent items? Consider using University Health Services or local urgent care clinics which can provide services for many symptoms that can mostly wait until the following day.
Get Vaccinated on Campus
Upcoming vaccine clinics for FDA-approved Pfizer at Johnson Commons. All clinics are for first or second Pfizer dose.
- Tuesday, Sep. 7, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Wednesday, Sep. 15, 9 a.m.-3 p.m.
- Wednesday, Sep. 22, 10 a.m.-2 p.m.
- Tuesday, Oct. 5, 1-3 p.m.
- Tuesday, Oct. 12, 1-3 p.m.
- Tuesday, Oct. 19, 1-3 p.m.
- Tuesday, Oct. 26, 1-3 p.m.
- Tuesday, Nov. 2, 1-3 p.m.
- Tuesday, Nov. 9, 1-3 p.m.
- Tuesday, Nov. 30, 1-3 p.m.
No appointment needed for Pfizer vaccine clinics. Vaccines are available for everyone ages 12 and up. Second doses will be scheduled while getting the first dose. Please print these two medical paperwork forms below to fill out and bring with you to your on-campus vaccination. Blank paperwork will also be available.
You may also walk in to the University Health Center Pharmacy any weekday 8 a.m.-4:30 p.m. to get a Pfizer vaccine, no appointment needed.
MSDH COVID-19 Isolation Order
Per the Mississippi State Department of Health (MSDH) statewide Order for the Isolation of Individuals Diagnosed with COVID-19, all persons residing in Mississippi must immediately home-isolate on first knowledge of infection with COVID-19. Please read the Order to review the consequences (including imprisonment, fines or both) for failure or refusal to obey the lawful order of Mississippi’s health officer.
Consistent with public health guidance from the CDC and MSDH and as a direct result of the spike in COVID-19 cases locally and nationally due to the Delta variant, the university continues to require face coverings in indoor public spaces on campus, regardless of vaccination status. Face coverings are not required when outdoors. Students and employees should follow CDC guidelines for how to wear a mask so that masks can be as effective as possible.
Support and Resources for Students in Quarantine and Isolation Housing
The Department of Student Housing offers Quarantine and Isolation housing to students who are living on campus (residence halls) and have been exposed to and/or test positive for COVID-19. Please see this page for details and FAQs as well as the information below.
- Meal delivery options are available to each student in on-campus quarantine and isolation housing.
- Student Housing provides staff members at the front desk of Brown Hall to assist students in isolation, as well as on-call support incase students need assistance after-hours.
- Student Housing, Student Health, and Dean of Students staff members check-in with students frequently throughout the quarantine or isolation period to provide support and answer questions.
- Each quarantine and isolation room is supplied with campus and housing resources information and bottled water to assist in the transition process. Starting the week of Sept. 6, snacks will also begin being placed in each quarantine and isolation room as well.
- Students can submit a COVID-19 Student Self-Report Form to have university personnel provide additional outreach and support.
Where to Get Tested
At this time, testing is available at the University Health Center and local clinics in town. The City of Oxford and the university are working with MSDH to bring a free testing site to Oxford next week, and we hope to announce details of that soon.
University Kicks Off Semester With Vaccination Clinics
The university is working to ensure that members of the university community have plenty of opportunities to be vaccinated at convenient times and locations. Over the course of four days near the beginning of the semester, volunteers from the School of Pharmacy administered more than 200 Pfizer vaccinations on campus to employees, students and students’ families visiting campus. To date, the university has administered more than 5,500 vaccine doses to the university community. See story here.
UM Physician Provides Information on Coronavirus Safety
Dr. Hubert Spears, a physician with the University Health Services, shares pandemic-related updates and guidance for the Ole Miss community, including: effectiveness of the vaccines against the Delta variant; which behaviors place you at the greatest risk for getting COVID; and new symptoms with Delta variant that we haven’t seen before. Read the article.
Featured FAQ: Do I Have to Quarantine if I am a Close Contact?
Quarantine if you have been in close contact (within 6 feet of someone for a cumulative total of 15 minutes or more over a 24-hour period) with someone who has COVID-19, unless you have been fully vaccinated. People who are fully vaccinated do NOT need to quarantine after contact with someone who had COVID-19 unless they exhibit symptoms. However, fully vaccinated people should get tested 3-5 days after exposure (even if they don’t show symptoms), and wear a mask indoors in public for 14 days following exposure or until their test result is negative. If you have tested positive for COVID-19 within the last 90 days (proof must be shown), you are not required to quarantine after exposure if:
- you have fully recovered (10 days from symptom onset or date of test, and fever free for at least 24 hours), and
- you have been asymptomatic since your COVID-19 exposure.
For additional details, University Health Services maintains updated guidance on quarantine and isolation on this page.
About the COVID-19 Vaccine Booster Shot
The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced a plan to begin offering COVID-19 vaccine booster shots this fall. The goal is for people to start receiving a COVID-19 booster shot beginning in the fall, with individuals being eligible starting 8 months after they received their second dose of an mRNA vaccine (either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna). This is subject to authorization by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) and recommendation by CDC’s Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP). FDA is conducting an independent evaluation to determine the safety and effectiveness of a booster dose of the mRNA vaccines. ACIP will decide whether to issue a booster dose recommendation based on a thorough review of the evidence. See more on this page from the CDC.
News Stories and Resources
- Ole Miss men’s basketball reaches 100% vaccination (Daily Journal)
- Ole Miss is a surprise No. 1 in a new college football ranking: Team vaccination rates (WSJ)
- Chancellor Boyce calls on Ole Miss community to get vaccinated (video)
- Get on board with the Lane Train! (video)
- COVID-19 Vaccine Mythbusters
- MSDH Health Order: Mandatory hospital participation in Mississippi COVID-19 system of care plan and delay of elective procedures (Aug. 30, 2021)
- CDC Study: Vaccination offers higher protection than previous COVID-19 infection
- People who’ve had COVID-19 should still get vaccinated. Here’s why (Healthline)
- CDC launches COVID-19 resources for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities
- VaxForward toolkit (ACHA CoVAC Initiative with messaging strategies and easy-to-share resources to increase vaccine confidence in college campus communities and combat vaccine misinformation)
- EU takes US off safe travel list; backs travel restrictions (AP)
- MSDH reported the following information for COVID-19 cases in Mississippi as of Aug. 31:
- 2,939 new cases, 81 new deaths and 176 long-term care facilities outbreaks.
- Mississippi Vaccination Report as of Aug. 31: 2,547,351 total doses administered;
- 1,420,136 people receiving at least one dose; and 1,164,995 people fully vaccinated.