COVID-19 Updates

As more and more people are vaccinated, we will safely return to campus for the fall 2021 semester, welcoming back our students, faculty and staff to our campus in accordance with University, New York City, New York State, and federal guidelines.

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Last updated: 08/18/21

CUNY SPH has submitted its proposed plan for returning to campus to the University. Return to campus plans and staff work schedules will be finalized and implemented once we receive University approval.

Policies and procedures for returning to campus

CUNY requires that all students, faculty, staff and visitors coming to SPH or any CUNY campus show proof that they have been fully vaccinated (defined as 14 days beyond the last vaccination shot). Vaccination is the most effective tool for controlling the COVID-19 pandemic. We strongly encourage everyone who is medically able to get vaccinated. With the recent increase in cases, hospitalizations, and deaths due to Delta and other emergent variants, it is extremely dangerous to remain unvaccinated.

If students, faculty, staff and visitors are unable to provide proof of vaccination, they will need to show a negative COVID-19 test result, taken within the prior seven days. The instructions vary slightly based on the role, as described below.

Vaccine Verification:

Proof of vaccination against the SARS-CoV-2 virus requires:

  1. A copy of your vaccine record indicating receipt of all doses necessary to complete an  authorized SARS-CoV-2 vaccine series, with COVID-19 Vaccines approved by FDA under EUA or COVID-19 Vaccines approved by WHO under EUL.
  2. Submitted documents must include:
    1. Your first name, last name, and date of birth
    2. The specific name of the vaccine(s) given, the date(s) of vaccination, vaccination site, and lot #.

Examples of documentation include: CDC Card, Signed Vaccine Information letter from a health care provider/pharmacy, CIR document, New York State Excelsior Pass or Excelsior Pass Plus showing vaccination proof.

Notes:

(a)   You may need to provide more than one document if all of the required information is not contained on a single document.

(b)  If you were vaccinated in New York State, we recommend that you download the New York State Excelsior Pass Plus, which contains all required information. You can upgrade to the New York State Excelsior Pass Plus if you previously downloaded the regular New York State Excelsior Pass.

CUNY faculty and staff

  1. To provide your vaccination information, go to CUNYfirst, click on the “Vaccination Verification” link, indicate whether you are fully vaccinated, unvaccinated or do not wish to disclose your vaccination status. (For a guide to submitting your information to CUNYfirst, please visit here or watch this video.)
  2. If vaccinated, enter the type and date of your last vaccine, upload a copy of your vaccination card and, if vaccinated in New York State, a copy of your New York State Excelsior Pass.
  3. Once uploaded, HR will review and verify your vaccination status, or be in touch with you if there are any questions about your documentation.
  4. To check your approval status, go to CUNYfirst, click on the “Vaccination Verification” link.  Under “Approval”, you can see your approval status. If “Approved”, download or refresh your Everbridge application on your smartphone to access the VaxPass, following the detailed instructions. (See: VaxPass Q&A here.)
  5. Have the “VaxPass Access Approved” confirmation open on your smartphone and ready for review by Public Safety at SPH or any CUNY location upon entry to campus. You will also need your CUNY ID card.

RF employees

  1. Go to RF’s website at www.rfcuny.org
  2. Log in using your 6-digit RF-issued employee ID (EMP ID) and password
  3. Under the Electronic Tools tab, select Vaccine Verification
  4. Follow the prompts
  5. RFCUNY employees who are fully vaccinated will receive instructions for enrolling in VaxPass.
  6. RFCUNY employees who are not fully vaccinated or wish not to disclose their status will receive instructions for enrolling in CUNY’s testing program.
  7. If you do not know your RF EMP ID or password, send an email to HRPassword@rfcuny.org.  If you have other questions, send an email to HRESManagement@rfcuny.org.

Students who are also employees

For CUNY and RF employees who are also students at SPH or other CUNY schools: Your student status supersedes your employee status, and your vaccination records will need to be approved by the Location Vaccine Authority (LVA) liaisons at the campus where you are enrolled. You can reach out to the LVA at the campus where you are a student. See the LVA roster here.

CUNY Students

  1. If you are taking in-person classes at SPH in Fall 2021, you must be fully vaccinated.
  2. To upload your vaccination information, go to CUNYfirst, click on the “Vaccination Verification link and indicate the type and date of your last vaccine, upload a copy of your vaccination card and, if vaccinated in New York State, a copy of your New York State Excelsior Pass.
  3. Once uploaded, the Campus Local Vaccine Authorities (LVAs) will review and verify your vaccination status and be in touch with you if there are any questions about your documentation.
  4. To check your approval status,” go to CUNYfirst, click on the “Vaccination Verification link.  Under “Approval,” you can see your approval status. If “Approved,” you should download or refresh the Everbridge application on your smartphone to access the VaxPass. Follow the detailed instructions.

Visitors

  1. Visitors include anyone who is not a CUNY SPH student, faculty, or staff, and include (but are not limited to): vendors, contractors, building personnel, community members, non-SPH students, faculty, and staff.
  2. An SPH faculty or staff member who plans to host a visitor must:
    1. submit a Request to Host Visitor(s) at CUNY SPH form
    2. inform the visitors that they will be required to submit proof of vaccination or proof of a negative PCR test, taken within the past seven days; wear a face covering; and follow other health and safety procedures.
  3. Once the form is submitted, the visitor(s) will receive instructions about how to submit the required proof of vaccination through the CLEARED4 site.

COVID-19 Testing Requirements

Individuals who do not provide proof of vaccination will need to present a negative PCR COVID-19 test result, taken within the previous seven days at a CUNY testing site, each time they come to any CUNY campus.

Students, Faculty and Staff
  1. SPH students, faculty and staff who need to access campus and whose vaccination status has not been verified through CUNYfirst will need to be tested through CUNY’s testing provider, Applied DNA Clinical Labs LLC (ADCL).
  2. They will receive an email from CLEARED4, (the health verification management system retained through ADCL), with the subject line “Welcome to safeCircle at CUNY,” with instructions about how to enroll in the testing program.
  3. Be sure to check all your email accounts, including personal ones, that may be linked to CUNYfirst.
  4. Once enrolled, participants will receive an overview of the program and instructions on how to proceed with making an appointment.
  5. ADCL has established testing at 20 sites at campuses throughout the University. SPH’s designated testing site is the Graduate Center, centrally located at 5th Avenue and 34th Street. However, SPH students, faculty and staff may schedule an appointment at a CUNY testing site that is more conveniently located to them. Here is a list of CUNY testing sites.
  6. Appointment scheduling, test results, and other communications will flow through the CLEARED4 platform.
  7. ADCL uses a PCR test with a nasal swab that is less invasive than the longer-stemmed swabs used elsewhere, but that is still highly sensitive and designed to detect the virus before a person becomes symptomatic and can begin spreading it.
  8. Test results will be processed within 24 hours (48 hours on weekends). Test results will be sent via email.
  9. For more information about CUNY’s COVID-19 testing program, please see the Testing FAQ.
Visitors
  1. Visitors are individuals who are not CUNY SPH students, faculty and staff and include, but are not limited to, contractors, vendors, CUNY and building personnel, prospective faculty and staff.
  2. IF you, as a CUNY SPH faculty or staff member, need to host a visitor, you will need to:
    1. Inform your visitor(s), with sufficient lead time prior to their visit, that the University requires that they show proof of vaccination or a negative PCR COVID19 test, taken within the past seven days; wear a face covering at all times; and follow other building and campus health and safety procedures.
    2. Complete the Request to host a visitor at CUNY SPH
    3. Inform your visitor(s) that they will receive an email asking them to provide the required documentation, if they haven’t already provided it.

All Students, Faculty, Staff, and Visitors are Advised to Stay Home If…

On any day that you are scheduled to come to campus, you:

  • Have a fever of 100°F or more
  • Have had close contact with a person confirmed or suspected to have COVID-19 in the past 10 days.
  • Are experiencing unusual or worsening respiratory symptoms, fever, chills, muscle pain, headache or a loss of taste or smell.
  • Have tested positive for COVID-19 through a diagnostic test in the past 10 days.
  • Have traveled internationally within the past 10 days.

Please be aware that some of these requirements may change over time, in accordance with changes in University, city, state, and federal guidelines and regulations.

Upon entering the building lobby, you will be required to complete a temperature screening.

Once you clear the temperature screening, please report directly to one of the SPH Public Safety stations on the ground, 5th, 6th, or 7th floors. You will be asked to present proof of vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative COVID test, taken within the past seven days, along with your SPH ID Card, or a picture ID Card if you don’t have one.

While on campus:

  • In accordance with CUNY’s Mask Mandate, you will be required to wear a face covering at all times, regardless of your vaccination status, except if you are fully vaccinated and are alone in an enclosed space such as an office, conference room, or dorm room.
  • You will be expected to carry your CUNY ID at all times.
  • Please continue to practice good hygiene while on campus (e.g. frequent hand sanitizing, hand washing and wiping high contact surfaces before and after use).
  • Please be aware that no food deliveries will be allowed inside the building.
  • Please refrain from gathering and congregating in hallways and other common areas.
  • Please plan your day, to the extent possible, so as to minimize trips between floors and in and out of the building.
  • If you begin to feel sick while on campus, please immediately notify Public.Safety@sph.cuny.edu

Dispose of single use face coverings (e.g. disposable surgical masks) in trash receptacles. Cloth masks should be washed thoroughly with soap and water for your personal re-use.

If you test positive for COVID-19 through a diagnostic test within ten days after leaving campus–

Resources and more info

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For students

Information for students on vaccination requirements, learning resources, technology tools, and getting help and support.

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For faculty and staff

Information for faculty and employees on returning to campus, technology tools, COVID-19 related benefits, and getting help and support.

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FAQs

Have questions about how COVID-19 will affect students, faculty, and staff during the fall 2021 semester? Check out our FAQ page.

CUNY SPH and COVID-19

New Yorkers Enjoying a Summer Day in the Upper East Side During Phase III of Covid-19 Pandemic

Working to address COVID-19

CUNY SPH faculty, students, and alumni are addressing the coronavirus pandemic through surveys of NYC residents, national cohort studies, systems science approaches, vaccine confidence advocacy, and more – and always through a social justice lens.

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Voices on the pandemic

Our faculty, staff, students, and alumni have been hard at work putting the COVID-19 pandemic into context for the public.

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