by MTU Flex Task Force
As COVID-19 vaccines become more available, the MTU Flex Task Force looks to update the Michigan Tech Community on the status of vaccine distribution. New updates to our Health and Safety Levels protocol will go into effect tomorrow (March 5), including guidance for vaccinated persons.
How is vaccine distribution being prioritized?
Prioritization is set by the State of Michigan and includes these priority groups:
- 1A — Health care workers and long-term care residents and employees.
- 1B — Those age 75+; prioritized frontline responders; pre-K-12 school and child care staff; corrections staff; agriculture and food processing workers; other essential frontline workers.
- 1C — Persons age 65-74; those age 18-64 with COVID-19 risk factors/pre-existing conditions; and all remaining essential workers.
- 2 — Everyone else.
The State of Michigan has determined that those 65 and older may receive the vaccine at this time. Of the 1C group, only ages 65-74 are currently being vaccinated, with vaccination running concurrently with the top of the 1B group. The governor is also expanding eligibility to individuals over 50 with health risks or those who care for someone with health risks effective March 8. On March 20, eligibility will be extended to all those 50 and over.
What is the timeline for vaccinations?
The State is hoping to move to the remainder of the 1B group and those in 1C with preexisting conditions on or around May 1. It is also planning to be able to offer the vaccine to the remainder of 1C this summer, with Phase 2 hopefully beginning in late summer.
Will the University be vaccinating employees?
Information regarding vaccine clinics will be provided to supervisors as their employees become eligible and the vaccine is available. However, employees do not need to wait for a vaccine clinic on our campus — they may obtain the vaccine elsewhere. Information on how to obtain the vaccine is available from several sources. Additional information is available at Copper Country Strong.
In addition, veterans may be able to obtain a vaccine through the VA and tribal members may be eligible to receive vaccine through their tribal health program. Providers tell us that additional slots are opening up all the time, so if you are 65+ and have not yet been vaccinated, you should be able to get in soon.
Remember, Michigan Tech is not requiring employees or students to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. There is no need to report your vaccination to the University if you receive it at a location other than a Michigan Tech vaccine clinic. We want to make the vaccine widely available to all of our students, faculty and staff as soon as possible, and we will continue to make this a priority as long as the need remains.
What should I do after I have been vaccinated?
Beginning tomorrow (March 5), MTU employees and students who have received all recommended doses of the COVID-19 vaccine at least two weeks prior should follow these protocols:
- Continue to complete the Daily Symptom Tracking Form prior to coming to campus.
- Continue to wear a face covering on campus and follow other campuswide health and safety protocols and guidelines.
- If you come into close contact with a person known or suspected to have COVID-19, and you do not have symptoms of COVID-19, you do not need to quarantine or report your contact, and you may come to campus, unless advised otherwise by your health care provider or the Western Upper Peninsula Health Department.
- At any time, if you experience symptoms of COVID-19, you need to remain away from campus until you are fever-free for 24 hours without the use of fever-reducing medication and any other symptoms are improving.
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