Fall Health Guidance
All Columbia affiliates must continue to wear masks at all times in indoor settings in Columbia facilities, regardless of vaccination status. Vaccinated individuals may remove masks and not physically distance only in outdoor settings on Columbia’s campuses. Unvaccinated individuals must continue to wear masks both indoors and outdoors. However, vaccinated individuals may choose to continue to wear masks outdoors on Columbia’s campuses and in crowded public settings, thus, no assumptions should be made regarding why an individual chooses to mask outdoors.
Statement on Omicron Variant
The University is closely monitoring emerging information on the Omicron variant, categorized as a variant of concern by the World Health Organization. Currently, there is limited information with regard to the ease of its transmission, whether it causes more severe illness, or whether it compromises the protection from current vaccines.
Be sure to read: What is Omicron and How Concerned Should We Be?
Please continue to take all precautions, including wearing a mask in public indoors, as well as in crowded outdoor contexts. Travelers should continue to follow CDC recommendations when traveling to and from the U.S. Additionally, COVID-19 vaccine booster doses are recommended for those who are eligible; visit vaccinetogetherny.org to learn more about booster doses and where you can get one.
At this time, the University remains in Yellow Alert Level, and all in-person activities and instruction should continue with the current COVID-19 preventive measures in place.
Please join the Campus Update Forum on Tuesday, December 7 at 4:00 pm for updates on the COVID-19 pandemic and the Omicron variant.
Required Protocol for Returning to Campus
These rules—and related policies and guidelines—apply starting this fall. You must follow all University Public Health Protocols, which include masking and distancing where appropriate.
On-campus Vaccination Mandate Compliance Data
November 22 – 28
*These numbers include 83 approved exemptions for faculty, researchers, and staff on campus last week (0.8%)
This session will include up-to-date information regarding COVID-19, the newly identified omicron variant, as well as guidance about campus gatherings, travel policy, and the new year.
The University is providing three additional days off for officers of administration, officers of research, officers of the libraries, and support staff as special fall-winter break days.
This session will include up-to-date information regarding COVID-19 and the fall 2021 term, including a focused discussion about COVID-19 vaccines for children.
Support Is Available
For general questions or comments about University COVID-19 policies, and to receive guidance on testing, contact tracing, isolation, and quarantine, email [email protected].
Email [email protected] at any time.
Faculty and staff can contact the Employee Assistance Program (EAP).
Where to Go with a Concern
If you observe non-adherence to safety protocols, e.g., wearing a mask, large gatherings, etc., you may submit a report using the resources below.
We are all responsible for creating and maintaining an environment built on respect and free from discrimination and harassment. Learn how to file a report.
Report contractor violations of COVID-19 safety protocols using the COVID-19 Contractor Compliance Tracker.
COVID-19 Research at Columbia
Researchers at Mailman School of Public Health find that high vaccination neighborhoods had more white residents, fewer people of color, higher incomes, and lower poverty rates.
The findings show a strong association with the proportions of people with chronic kidney disease and those living in nursing homes, and support the idea that vaccine allocation could help minimize severe outcomes, particularly deaths.
A significant level of symptoms of depression, anxiety, and post-traumatic stress may follow the disease independent of any previous psychiatric diagnoses, according to new research by Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health.
A new study of the U.K. and South Africa variants of SARS-CoV-2 predicts that current vaccines and certain monoclonal antibodies may be less effective at neutralizing these variants and that the new variants raise the specter that reinfections could be more likely.