Good afternoon,
I hope that you have had a great first week of the semester. I want to provide a few COVID-19 updates. First, I want to let you know that the COVID-19 Task Force has been closely monitoring our prevention strategies and cases on campus. We are working on a dashboard that will report timely information about our campus community. Until then, I am providing an update. We currently have 8 students or employees who have self-reported being positive for COVID-19. Most are isolating off campus and thankfully, no one has required hospitalization. Please continue to encourage people to self report so that we may have an accurate picture of the MWSU community.
  • If you know of a student or employee who tests positive for COVID-19 please encourage them to complete an electronic form on our website. Please don’t try to report for them…
We will be working closely with groups on campus to develop public service announcements that will address frequent questions or concerns. I will also continue to provide updates to you via email as needed. Here are a few things to keep in mind:
  • Please wear your mask when you are not in your personal space. Personal space would be at your immediate desk area, or room if you are a student. Hallways within a department or a dorm are not considered personal space. Please wear a mask when you are inside in any community space including department or dorm hallways.
  • When eating, no mask is required while you are actively eating. Social distancing is still a necessity. As soon as you are finished eating, replace your mask (even if you are waiting at a table with friends or colleagues).
  • If you are a faculty member…What do you do if a student tells you that they tested positive and they have been attending your class?
    • Ask the student to self report via the online reporting tool.
    • The student should only be attending classes remotely until the Health Department or healthcare provider releases them to return to class.
    • Has everyone in your class been wearing a mask and maintaining a social distance of 6 feet or more?  If so, the others within the class are not considered a close contact (they are not at risk from this incident) and no further action is required. This provides a huge incentive to wear a mask and maintain social distance!
    • If you have not been following the social distancing guidelines or requiring a mask in your class, the Health Department will be contacting you for additional information.
    • Please do not take it upon yourself to notify classmates, friends, or others of someone else’s positive result. The Health Department will conduct required contact tracing.

Thank you for all that you are doing to keep everyone as safe as possible! If you have questions the Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services (DHSS)  COVID-19 hotline is 877-435-8411.This number is answered 24 hours a day. The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) also provides updated information.

Stay healthy!

Crystal Harris, Ph.D., R.N.
COVID Coordinator & Int. Dean, College of Science and Health
Missouri Western State University