Answers to your most pressing COVID-related questions
Last Thursday, more than 500 faculty and staff joined UF Health Screen, Test & Protect Director Michael Lauzardo, M.D., M.Sc., for a town hall designed to answer questions about COVID-19 vaccinations, the delta variant and more. If you were unable to attend, you can find answers to many of the questions posed during the town hall at https://news.hr.ufl.edu/covid-19/town-hall-fall-21/.
This week, the UF Faculty Senate will host another town hall designed to address faculty questions about UF policies, best practices and guidance for a safe and healthy opening of the fall semester. In addition to Dr. Lauzardo, panelists will include UF President Kent Fuchs, Ph.D., Provost Joe Glover, Ph.D., and UF Faculty Senate Chair David Bloom, Ph.D. Faculty and staff interested in tuning in may do so via Zoom this Thursday at 2 p.m. at https://ufl.zoom.us/j/99011751056?pwd=RTdEajVLM2Y3QlpwQnJpRDUyckNNdz09.
Vaccinations and N95s provide best protection for student-facing activities
One of the key concerns many have raised about the delta variant of COVID-19 is its highly transmissible nature, even to those who are vaccinated. As Nicole Iovine, M.D., Ph.D., UF Health chief epidemiologist and clinical professor, has shared, “The good news is that in a fully vaccinated person, the immune system recognizes the threat and ramps up antibody production very quickly to clear the virus and that’s why vaccinated people don’t become severely ill.” Read the full article and view Dr. Iovine’s video here: https://ufhealth.org/news/2021/uf-health-shands-chief-epidemiologist-says-vaccines-essential-tamp-down-covid-19-delta.
“In larger gatherings especially, you can effectively reduce your risk of contracting COVID if you are vaccinated and wear an N95 mask,” Dr. Iovine recently added.
UF previously provided a supply of N95 soft pouch masks to colleges and units throughout the university for faculty and staff in student-facing roles. These masks, unlike the hard-shell N95 masks used in clinical settings, do not require fit testing. If you are in need of additional masks, please reach out to your area’s designated point of contact to make a request. In many cases, this person will be your area’s HR Liaison. If you’re not sure who that is, you can find a list here: https://hr.ufl.edu/about/hr-liaisons/.
Departments that wish to purchase additional soft pouch N95 masks and other PPE may do so independently via myUF Marketplace. For more information, please visit https://procurement.ufl.edu/covid19ppe/.
UF Health informational videos available
If you are looking for more answers to your medical questions, you can also check out UF Health’s playlist of informational videos that address concerns about the COVID-19 delta variant. Topics range from explaining characteristics of the variant, to breakthrough cases and what parents can do to protect their children. Find them here: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLr_fqSI-B7YBr3EF7GuihiiByITNtp-ea
Getting vaccinated is easy
As a reminder, faculty and staff can schedule a vaccine appointment, or COVID test, by logging into https://one.uf.edu/ For more information, visit https://coronavirus.ufhealth.org/screen-test-protect-2/.