CSU updates the community on COVID-19 protocol

Health strategy recently spoke about future actions for the campus to take in fighting against the coronavirus pandemic.

CSU President Harlan Sands at the Wolstein Center mass vaccine clinic earlier this year. Photo courtesy of Harlan Sands

While continuing the battle against COVID-19, Cleveland State University’s health department released an informative video about its plans to slow the spread of the virus on Sept. 3.

This came days before the campus community was notified that university President Harlan Sands tested positive for COVID-19. How this news might change the approach in fighting against the spread of the virus is still unknown.

A solution for slowing the spread is indeed a much needed bulk of information, regardless of where it is conceived. The CSU community looks to continue researching and spreading awareness for as long as the virus looms.

Besides ongoing random student-infection tests, the university announced an exclusive four to five-week procedure that will be active in the immediate week following its announcement.

A video was sent to the CSU community featuring Dr. Forrest Faison. Video courtesy of Cleveland State University

Dr. Forrest Faison, chief of health strategy, was featured in a three-minute video to mention campus progress and explain future steps in CSU’s plan.

Faison opened with stating that CSU has ” had a very successful opening to our fall semester, thanks to all of you.”

“Our multiple layers of protection, including our indoor mask mandate, are working. And as of today, we have only had 12 reported cases, none of which were acquired on campus.”

CSU has actively tried to advance protection against the coronavirus, without interrupting students’ learning, since the wake of the pandemic.

“We have made major investments in our building systems, including high-efficiency ultraviolet air purifiers that, combined with our safety protocols, have enabled us to become and remain one of the safest urban universities in the country since the onset of the pandemic,” Faison said.

After mentioning CSU’s low infection rate compared to other public universities, Faison presses the issue that the leadership team will continue to use its expertise to keep students safe.

“We feel it’s important to redouble our efforts to get as many of us vaccinated as possible in the next six weeks,” Faison continued. “That’s our common goal and our number one priority if we are to be able to remain on campus.”

Faison also gives a personal explanation for getting as many students vaccinated as possible.

“Vaccines are safe, effective and our best protection against infection. This is why I, and my entire family, have been vaccinated. There is no way that I would have done this as a physician, if I had any concerns about the safety of the vaccines.”

In order for students to stay on campus, as Faison explains, new active steps to defend the virus are necessary.

“First, we will launch an intensive six-week campaign that combines peer-to-peer education, easy convenient access to vaccines and incentives to help folks get vaccinated,” Faison said. “And we’ll start this by kicking off a ‘vaccinated vikes,’ a ‘I am vaccinated’ drive. We’ll continue to assess the local situation while we do this; we’ll evaluate our progress on Oct. 19 to assess any need for change in our approach.”

He closes his address by adding more to his earlier comments about CSU’s active commitments to keeping everyone safe.

“Throughout the pandemic, we’ve put safety measures in place that follow the science and address the unique needs of our community,” Faison said. “That will continue to be our focus as we work to keep each other safe. Thank you again for all that you are doing to keep all of us here at Cleveland State safe, and all of the things that you are doing to keep yourself, your family, and your loved ones safe. And I hope each of you has a wonderful Labor Day weekend.”

Dr. Faison and the health strategy team are working to keep students determined to educate their peers about vaccination, while helping provide vaccinations for the CSU community. However, including incentives and effectiveness of peer-to-peer education, some questions may still be left unanswered about the new plans in place.

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