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ATU Aligns COVID-19 Policies With New CDC Guidance

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Arkansas Tech University is aligning its face covering and social distancing policies for vaccinated individuals with revised guidance from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) effective immediately.

Face coverings and social distancing are no longer required on ATU campuses or at ATU events for individuals who are fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Fully vaccinated is defined as at least 14 days beyond an individual’s final dose of COVID-19 vaccine.

Revised guidance provided by the CDC on May 13, 2021, states that “fully vaccinated people no longer need to wear a mask or physically distance in any setting, except where required by federal, state, local, tribal, or territorial laws, rules, and regulations, including local business and workplace guidance.”

ATU faculty and staff members with accommodations relative to COVID-19 are encouraged to contact the ATU Office of Human Resources at (479) 968-0396 for information about how the change in policy applies to their specific situations. ATU students seeking disability accommodations should contact the ATU Office of Disability Services at (479) 968-0302.

“From the beginning of the COVID-19 pandemic, Arkansas Tech University has made data-driven decisions based upon the scientific evidence and guidance provided by the CDC and the Arkansas Department of Health,” said Dr. Robin E. Bowen, ATU president. “Our national and state experts in infectious diseases agree that we have reached a point where it is safe for fully vaccinated individuals to be among others without a face covering. As we have done since March 2020, we will follow the lead of the doctors, scientists and public health professionals and take this important step toward normalcy.”

Gov. Asa Hutchinson reported on Tuesday, May 25, that 50 percent of adult Arkansans have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. All Americans age 12 or older are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. The CDC recommends that individuals who have not yet done so get a COVID-19 vaccine as soon as possible.

Information about locations that are providing COVID-19 vaccinations is available at www.arrx.org/covid-vaccine-pharmacies and www.vaccines.gov.

Arkansas Tech will continue to monitor COVID-19 trends and remain in position to adjust its public health policies as conditions warrant.

Any member of the ATU community with an active case of COVID-19 or an exposure to COVID-19 should not come to on campus and should report their condition to the ATU Health and Wellness Center by calling (479) 968-0329 or completing the COVID-19 reporting form at https://atu.medicatconnect.com.

Individuals should follow Arkansas Department of Health guidance and that of their doctor as they recover from COVID-19 and makes plans to return to campus.

For more information about ATU’s ongoing recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, visit www.atu.edu/pandemicrecovery or contact the ATU Health and Wellness Center at (479) 968-0329.