COVID-19 Checkup

SHSU_COVID_Checkup_HeaderNewsletter

January 14, 2021

Welcome Back Bearkats!

This Spring semester, we have taken lessons learned, incorporated them into our university’s health and safety plan and adapted protocols to continually make our campus safer. Due to the increase in recent COVID-19 cases in our area, as a precautionary measure to slow a potential spread of the virus, SHSU has begun this semester with a two-week moratorium on all in-person events outside of classroom instruction.

We still have a mandatory face covering requirement and social distancing measures in place and have incorporated a COVID-19 learning module in Blackboard for students. We continually update our website to bring you the most up-to-date information and ask that you check our Staying Strong ’21 site daily. Please be sure to check ALL FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS pages which are regularly updated as policies and requirements change.

Student testing continues to be offered at the student health center associated with a sick visit and a new offering for asymptomatic screening testing will start on Wednesday, January 20 (see details below.) Faculty and staff testing at the SHC will follow shortly thereafter. We will provide more details as they become available. In the meantime, students, faculty and staff can still get tested at two county testing sites.

Looking back to the Fall semester, we learned a great deal about COVID-19. We tested more than 6,500 faculty, staff and students in two months. Thanks to your collective efforts to control the spread of the virus, we successfully completed the semester and graduated more than 1,900 students in-person on December 19, 2020. Let’s stay strong and focus on what we can control now, as it will serve us well in the future.

COVID-19 Testing – Asymptomatic Screening

Where: SHC

When: Beginning January 20, Monday – Friday, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m.

The testing provided by the SHC is for asymptomatic screening. In order to be tested at the SHC, you need to do the following:

COVID-19 Testing – Symptomatic

  • Students: If you are exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, seek medical care at the SHC
  • Faculty/Staff: If you are exhibiting COVID-19 symptoms, seek medical care through your medical provider

COVID-19 Vaccines

Sam Houston State has been approved as a vaccine administration site allowing us to provide free vaccinations to students, staff, and faculty.

  • What’s Happening Now: Currently, Phase IA recipients (front line healthcare workers and residents at long-term care facilities) and Phase 1B recipients (people 16 and older with at least one chronic medical condition and those over 65 with an increased risk for severe illness from COVID-19) are eligible to receive the vaccine.
  • What’s Happening Next: The Student Health Center has developed a campus vaccine administration plan for when the shipments arrive. Unfortunately, due to the state distribution plan, we do not know when SHSU will receive its vaccine shipment but anticipate it will be later in the semester. The university encourages those eligible to get the vaccine now to do so through their healthcare provider or other resources.
  • What to Expect: While the vaccine is not available to the general population and our Bearkat community yet, we will keep you informed every step of the way until it is.

FFCRA Leave

Earlier this week, Human Resources sent an email to all faculty and staff announcing SHSU has chosen to participate in extending FFCRA which provides full time employees up to 80 hours of emergency paid sick leave for eligible COVID-19 conditions between April 1, 2020 and March 31, 2021. Please be advised this is an extension. If you have previously used this leave, it is no longer available to you.

COVID-19 Updates

Weekly updates of confirmed cases of COVID-19 will continue to be added to the university’s dashboard every Monday through Friday, at approximately 4:30 p.m. Since data is constantly evolving, we are currently looking at improvements to our COVID-19 Dashboard. To see the current number of cases, visit Dashboard Updates.

COVID-19 Work Group

Members
NameDepartment
Drew Miller Student Affairs
Brian Loft Academic Affairs
Robert Williams Health Center
Joellen Tipton Residence Life
Ann Theodori SAM Center
Stephanie Knific Marketing & Communications
Rachel Shorter Tech/Desktop Services
Dustin LeNorman Athletics
Matt Roberts Facilities Services
Rhonda Beassie Human Resources
Candace Walkley College of Osteopathic Medicine
Erica Bumpurs Health Center
Mary-Katherine Breen Academic Success Center
Wayne Barrett College of Arts & Media
Anne Gaillard Biology/College of Science & Engineering Technology
Steve Jeter Public Safety
Ad Hoc Members
NameDepartment
Jerrell Sherman Dean of Students Office
Jessica Smith Human Resources
Rachel Valle Student Activities
Clint Lockwood Enrollment Management
Terry Blaylock Client Services
Kristy Vienne Auxiliary Services
Bill Angrove SHSU Online
Julie Schwab Provost's Office