Seton Hall University

Start of Spring 2022 Semester; Free Masks and Testing Kits; Anticipated Return of In-person Classes  

We wish each of you a successful spring 2022 semester as classes are now underway across all three campuses.

The state's public health statistics have shown marked improvements over the past few days. New confirmed positive cases are down 47% from a week ago. Hospitalizations are down. The transmission rate, which was nearing 2.0, is now down to .96. These are all highly encouraging signs. But we remain informed and prepared to deal with the ever-changing public health situation.

As announced on January 6, we anticipate returning to fully in-person classes on Monday, January 31, 2022. We remain guided by the University's many health and safety protocols, along with a careful and continued analysis of COVID-19 public health statistics and the projected near-term path of the virus. We will make and announce a formal decision regarding the resumption of in person classes soon.

You can read more at:

White House Announces Free COVID Tests for Each Residence

As announced by the Biden Administration, residential households in the U.S. can order one set of 4 free at-home tests from USPS.com.

Fill in this form with your contact and shipping information to order your tests.

Note: USPS is seeing a very limited number of cases of addresses that are not registered as multi-unit buildings which could lead to COVID test kit ordering difficulties. We heard this happening with some college residence halls and other congregate settings.

USPS is working on a fix, but in the meantime for assistance in the ordering process the USPS recommends filing a service request at https://emailus.usps.com/s/the-postal-store-inquiry or contacting their help desk at 1-800-ASK-USPS (1-800-275-8777) to help address the issue.

Additionally, this government web site provides alternate advice and resources for those having trouble accessing the 4 free at home tests.

Free Covid Testing for all New Jersey Residents

The NJ Department of Health and Vault Medical Services have partnered to offer a free, at-home COVID-19 saliva test kit that is available to every New Jerseyan who thinks they need a test – even if you don't have symptoms.

To order a free test kit, visit https://learn.vaulthealth.com/nj/

Local and Campus Testing is Available

The State of New Jersey provides comprehensive information regarding How To Get Tested For COVID-19 In New Jersey.

Essex County provides an array of vaccination and testing information.

The University is following CDC and State of New Jersey testing guidance, and Health Services has an ample amount of testing supplies. Students (vaccinated and unvaccinated) may request to be tested for COVID-19 as frequently as once per week.

We found this article interesting:

When Should You Take an At-Home COVID Test?

Indoor Mask Requirement

All individuals (vaccinated and unvaccinated) are required to wear a mask at all indoor, nonresidential, on-campus University settings, except when alone or dining.

We strongly encourage you to upgrade your mask. Here are some thoughts on why:

Higher quality masks are readily available in stores and online. However, counterfeits are abundant, so be careful in your purchase.

The CDC provides information about reviewed and approved masks at NIOSH-approved N95 Particulate Filtering Facepiece Respirators

You can learn more at:

N95 masks are your best mask option—here's where to buy them online

Higher grade masks are not washable – but they may be reusable for a short period of time, as explained in these articles:

The CDC provides valuable guidance regarding mask wear and care: Your Guide to Masks and Wearing a Mask.

The Biden Administration announced it is distributing 400 million high grade masks.

Booster Shots Are Available. Get One.

We emphasize what we have said before: If you are not vaccinated, get vaccinated. If you received your initial vaccination, get boosted. Beyond the health benefits, boosted individuals who are close contacts are exempt from certain quarantine protocols.

Vaccines are widely available – at pharmacies, hospitals, health facilities, and other locations. See where you or a loved one can find a vaccine appointment at covid19.nj.gov/finder.

The CDC provides this helpful vaccine finder. Another nationwide site provides information to Find COVID-19 Vaccines Near You.

We are resuming SHUFLY service to Livingston Mall every Saturday so students can access the Essex County testing and vaccination site. The County has additional sites at the Kmart in West Orange and at Essex County College, which provides convenient access for our Law School community. Learn more at https://www.essexcovid.org/ and remember to bring your Seton Hall ID.

The federal testing and vaccination site in East Orange will remain open until January 24.

We are working with external partners to provide vaccination clinics (initial and booster doses) on the South Orange campus on February 8 and March 1. We will provide more details in an upcoming newsletter.

Essex County Community Health Assessment Survey

The South Orange Health Department has requested our community’s participation in a community health assessment survey. The purpose of this study is to understand the health behaviors of the residents of Essex County, evaluate the performance of public health systems, and assess plans for the future health needs in the county. Participation is voluntary.

CDC Provides Helpful Information

University Update

  • There were 2 new cases since last week’s report.
  • As of January 19, the five-day moving average of positive cases is at 0.
  • 0 on campus quarantine and isolation beds are occupied.
  • The entire campus community has a vaccination rate of 91.5% with 99% of those fully vaccinated. We are particularly grateful to our students, faculty, and staff for doing their part; through their efforts, we have a highly vaccinated University community.

Your health and safety remain paramount in Seton Hall’s planning and actions. If you have questions, comments, or suggestions, please contact the HICT here.

Sincerely,

Matthew Borowick
Vice President of University Relations
Co-chair, Health Intervention and Communication Team

Monica N. Burnette, Ph.D.
Vice President, Division of Student Services
Co-chair, Health Intervention and Communication Team

Categories: Campus Life , Health and Medicine

For more information, please contact:

  • Health Intervention and Communication Team
  • 973-761-9000
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