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Dear faculty and staff,
As you’ve seen in the national news, cases of COVID-19 have been ticking upward, in large part due to highly contagious variants.
We’re seeing some of this in our own community. Student Affairs is communicating with students this afternoon that we have seen 7 new positive cases so far this week among students living on campus or nearby, beyond those previously reported on our COVID-19 dashboard from previous weeks. The new cases are vaccinated individuals, and they are experiencing mild or moderate symptoms.
We encourage you to keep in mind the following:
- Vaccination remains the most important protection against COVID-19. Vaccination rates at Stanford are well above 90% for those who are reporting their status in Health Check, but we encourage you to get vaccinated if you are able to and have not yet.
- “Breakthrough” cases of COVID-19 are occurring in some vaccinated individuals, often due to the Delta variant. The vaccines are very effective at preventing serious illness from COVID-19 in these situations, but individuals still may experience symptoms.
- If you experience COVID-like symptoms, please (1) stay home from work, (2) get a COVID-19 test, and (3) complete Health Check if you have been coming to campus.
- Please keep in mind our guidance on face coverings, which we updated recently following the lead of the Bay Area county health officers. Stanford is requiring the use of face coverings in indoor spaces that are open to the public, and is recommending the use of face coverings in any indoor spaces that are crowded. We also have face covering requirements for classrooms, public transit, health care facilities and other settings, and additional requirements for those who have not been vaccinated.
- When planning on-campus events, please keep in mind that crowded indoor social gatherings still carry more risk than outdoor gatherings.
Stanford is closely monitoring the public health situation and the circumstances around the COVID-19 variants. We will continue to provide updates.
Associate Vice Provost
Environmental Health and Safety
Rich Wittman, MD, MPH
Stanford University Occupational Health Center