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New requirements for boosters and quarantine

Jan. 14, 2022

Campus community,

Effective Jan. 28, 2022, students, staff and faculty (who are eligible) need a booster shot to be considered up-to-date with COVID vaccinations.

This new campus requirement reflects guidance from the CDC and Illinois Department of Health.

In addition, when spring semester classes begin Feb. 2, students, faculty and staff who have not had a booster vaccination may be required to have a weekly COVID-19 test.

Getting and registering a booster

We know that not everyone is eligible for a booster shot, but most people on campus are. The CDC recommends that people age 16 and older get a booster five months after receiving a second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or two months after getting the Johnson & Johnson vaccine. 

Vaccinations and boosters are available at the Augustana Convenient Care, many local pharmacies and the Rock Island County Health Department. The on-campus clinic is only offering Pfizer boosters at this time.

→ Everyone who has had a booster vaccination should notify the college through Augustana’s vaccination registry. If you are boosted, but do not notify us, we need to consider you not up to date on your vaccination status.

More than 92 percent of students, faculty, and staff are vaccinated, which has helped to keep our campus and community healthy. Boosters are the next step in the evolving public health strategy to which we have adapted and responded as a community.

New policy on isolation and quarantine

We have made a decision to follow the updated CDC and Illinois Department of Public Health guidance for isolation and quarantine in schools. People who test positive for COVID now will be required to isolate for five days. Additional isolation time will be required if the person continues to have a fever, or other symptoms are not improving.

• People who are determined to be close contacts who are not up-to-date on their COVID vaccinations, including all eligible boosters, now will have to quarantine for 5 days. (We encourage you to isolate or quarantine at home if possible.)

• Close contacts who are up-to-date on their COVID vaccinations do not have to quarantine.  

Close contact means people are within 6 feet for a total of 15 minutes over a 24-hour period.

Important change in housing

Because boosters are widely available, the college no longer will divert funds from other important activities to pay for the quarantine and isolation expenses of those who choose not to be up to date with vaccinations.

We will continue to help students who are not up-to-date with vaccinations to find discounted lodging at local hotels, at their own expense, if they do not have other places to isolate or quarantine. Those costs, even at a discount, would be about $75+ a night for each of the five days.  

Students who are up-to-date on their COVID vaccinations will be provided food and lodging by the college to meet isolation requirements and will not be charged for this service. 

→ Complete information is at Augustana Strong.

→ We will host a campus briefing at noon today.

We will continue to take a data-driven, evidence-based approach to mitigating the impact of COVID-19. Our layered approach is designed to reduce the risk of spread while allowing us to continue our signature experiences and in-person classes. 

We appreciate everyone who is supporting these efforts. You are #AugustanaStrong.

Steven Bahls, President
Dr. Wes Brooks, Dean of Students
Kent Barnds, Executive Vice President
Dr. Wendy Hilton-Morrow, Provost
Sheri Curran, General Counsel
Kirk Anderson, Chief Financial Officer
Dr. Monica Smith, Vice President
Keri Rursch, Assistant Vice President