Posted January 20, 2021 by Dan Moser
The Research Task Force will continue sending updates about campus operations that affect research and creative activities during the pandemic. This message addresses topics for the week of Jan. 19-22. Please continue being vigilant throughout the upcoming spring semester. New updates will be posted on the COVID-19 Research Response website.
New this week
Information about vaccines
The university is collaborating with the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department on a COVID-19 vaccine distribution plan for the UNL community, following the state’s plan to prioritize health-care providers and emergency medical technicians. More information will be forthcoming about the vaccine rollout.
Spring 2021 mandatory testing begins today
The campus’ strategy to curb the spread of COVID-19 will continue evolving in response to the state of the pandemic. UNL is providing free saliva testing resources for faculty, staff and students, with the aim of protecting campus, visitors and the larger community.
- Chancellor Ronnie Green announced Jan. 11 that saliva testing is mandatory for anyone who will be on campus during the spring semester. Complete information is available on the spring 2021 testing website. Students, faculty and staff who will not be on campus are not required to participate in the testing program. Read more about exemptions and the FAQ guide.
- Faculty, staff and students should download the Safer Community app for iOS or Android to schedule a testing appointment. The app uses a color-coded system to verify individuals’ testing status, which will be verified by wellness attendants at campus buildings. If you do not have a smartphone, use this form to schedule a test. Students will need to complete an updated Cornhusker Commitment and COVID-19 training before downloading the Safer Community app.
- Re-entry testing is available from Jan. 19-24 at stations located on City and East campuses and Nebraska Innovation Campus. Individuals must have completed at least one round of saliva testing by Jan. 25, with a negative result, to gain access to campus facilities.
- To maintain access, individuals must complete two rounds of testing at the beginning of the semester. Users will be notified via the Safer Community app when their second test is due, usually around 10 days after the initial test.
- Additional testing measures will be coordinated with the Lincoln-Lancaster County Health Department in response to conditions in the community and vaccine availability.
Check your reopening plans, checklists
The reopening plan and checklist is still required for all research laboratories and creative spaces. Investigators who have already implemented their plans are encouraged to review them again to ensure they meet local and state directed health measures. Investigators can modify existing reopening plans by clicking on the link embedded within the original approval e-mail. Anyone who has not yet submitted a reopening plan should become familiar with the reopening guidelines before submitting a plan for approval.
This communication is distributed to principal investigators with approved research and creative activity re-opening plans as well as the associate deans for research. Please share this guidance with members of your research team as appropriate.