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COVID-19

Fall 2021 Return to Campus Resources

JH Needs U Back Campaign

Washington DC Campus Updates

All JHU students, faculty and staff will be required to have proof of a Covid-19 vaccine before returning to campus in the fall. The University will offer vaccination clinics throughout the summer. Additional information and upcoming clinic dates can be found here.

A daily health check-in will be needed whenever you're on a university campus, make sure to get to know your Prodensity app.

Dear Johns Hopkins Community: 

We continue to look forward to the beginning of the spring semester on Jan. 24 and are working to resume a broad range of in-person academic, research, and other activities as safely as possible. Two years into the pandemic, we know the strain on our community is great and that coming together in person is vitally important to the well-being and progress of our students in particular. As always, we are carefully considering how best to sustain the safe environment we’ve been able to create on our campuses throughout the pandemic.
 
As you know, the data suggest that omicron is more easily transmissible than other variants of the COVID virus and that it progresses more quickly but typically results in less severe illness and fewer hospitalizations—particularly among those who have been fully vaccinated, including booster doses. Those characteristics, as well as the near universal rate of vaccination within our community, make the surge we are experiencing now different from the one we faced a year ago. In response, we are taking the following steps:
  • Masks. We will require the use of N95s, KN95s, or a combination of a cloth mask with a surgical mask. A cloth mask alone or a surgical mask alone will no longer meet the university’s mask requirement. School of Medicine affiliates will continue to follow Johns Hopkins Medicine’s masking policy. We will distribute a variety of mask types at numerous locations around the university, on all campuses, beginning next week. Whatever kind of university-approved mask you use, the most important thing is to wear it consistently and properly—with a tight fit and covering both the mouth and the nose.
  • Booster mandate. We are glad to see so many of you getting ahead of our Feb. 1 deadline for booster shots. Boosters offer significant protection against omicron, and we urge you to get yours as soon as you are eligible. Information about on-campus booster clinics and how to sign up for a shot is available on the JHU Coronavirus Information website. Once you get your booster, you must register it in the Vaccine Management System, even if it is registered in MyChart.
  • Testing. In order to catch COVID cases more quickly and reduce the likelihood of outbreaks on campus, we have increased to twice a week our current mandatory testing requirements for undergraduate and graduate students who will be on campus, and we encourage faculty and staff to take advantage of our on-demand asymptomatic testing, which is available at a wide variety of locations across our campuses. Directions on scheduling an appointment through MyChart are available online.
  • Return tests for undergraduates living in residence halls. In addition to the increased testing above, undergraduates living on campus will be required to test immediately upon their arrival and to quarantine in their rooms until they receive a negative result. Students arriving the weekend of Jan. 21-23 will be given a rapid antigen self-test so that we can be assured that they will get their results in advance of the first day of classes on Jan. 24. Details will be sent to undergraduate students in a follow-up message.
  • Academic flexibility. While we remain committed to a full return to campus and onsite instruction, we anticipate that both faculty and students may face challenges in maintaining academic continuity during the next two weeks as we return to campus and resume testing. It is important that we all treat one another with empathy and understanding, and in some circumstances exercise flexibility in how we maintain teaching and learning. Our divisions will provide temporary adjustments as needed to faculty whose ability to teach in person is impacted by the pandemic, owing to circumstances such as unexpected school closures and other child care disruptions, the need to care for family members, etc. Faculty will continue to take steps to support students in keeping up with their coursework if they are required to isolate or quarantine.
  • Hybrid and remote work for staff. Thanks to your adherence to public health measures, our campuses remain safe, but we recognize that this is a challenging time for many members of our workforce in terms of managing the personal and family disruptions of the pandemic. For that reason, we will extend the period of increased workplace flexibility (announced on Dec. 31) until Feb. 7, at the discretion of each division. To the extent that staff can perform some or all of their work remotely, subject to departmental or divisional approvals, they may do so, and we extend our continued gratitude to all those employees who are and have been working in person during this time.
  • Isolation housing. We have substantially increased our inventory of isolation housing compared to last semester, and we have adjusted our protocols to ensure we are prioritizing its use to house those undergraduates whose living situations put them at most risk of spreading the virus to others. Undergraduates living in residence halls are our first priority because congregate living often makes isolation in place difficult. Undergraduates living off campus are no longer required to isolate in university-provided housing; such housing cannot be guaranteed for off-campus students but may be made available if inventories allow and considering the student’s individual circumstances. Depending on conditions, students may be required to isolate in their rooms.
  • Quarantine. Consistent with CDC guidelines and the advice of our own experts in public health and infectious disease, fully vaccinated (including a booster) individuals are no longer required to quarantine after a meaningful contact. Those students who are required to quarantine (e.g., those who have received a vaccine exception or are not yet boosted) will do so in their own rooms or residences, even in shared living situations.
  • Contact tracing. Because omicron appears to develop and spread more quickly than previous variants, our existing manual system of contact tracing is less effective. Instead, we have adopted an automated system in which those who test positive will fill out a form listing their close contacts, and those close contacts will then be notified by email.
  • Dining facilities and events. We will move to grab-and-go service at our residential dining facilities, and special permission will be required for all nonacademic indoor events of 50 people or more through Feb. 6. Grab-and-go food at events is suspended during this period.

COVID is a serious and exhausting challenge, but it is important to emphasize how much better prepared we are to face the virus now than we were when it first emerged almost two years ago. The steps you have taken—vaccination, mask-wearing, testing and more—have contributed immeasurably to the safety of our community and to our ability to meet our mission of education, research, and service. At this time of higher community prevalence, we ask you to be particularly careful to monitor yourself for symptoms and to stay home and get tested if you are sick. We thank you for your continued diligence in the weeks ahead.
 
Stay safe and be well,
 
Stephen Gange
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
 
Jon Links 
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer
 
Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-Being

Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs

Dear Johns Hopkins Community:
 
We write to announce that all eligible Johns Hopkins University faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows, and undergraduate and graduate students who will be working or studying at a U.S.-based university campus or worksite will be required to get either the Pfizer or Moderna COVID booster shot by Feb. 1. 
 
Affiliates who are 100% remote—that is, those who never come to any Johns Hopkins facility or conduct business publicly on Johns Hopkins' behalfremain exempt. Members of clinical departments at the School of Medicine will be governed by Johns Hopkins Health System vaccination policies. More details of who is included in JHU's vaccine requirements are on the Coronavirus Information website. Questions can be directed by email to VMS@jhu.edu.
 
Emerging evidence has shown that immunity to COVID wanes over time, particularly against the omicron variant, but that booster shots of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine provide significant additional protection. We believe this step will help prevent disruptions to our plans for an in-person spring semester.
  • Document your booster: Upload proof of your booster shot to the Vaccine Management System (VMS) now, or as soon as you’ve had your shot.
  • Eligibility: You are eligible for a booster if you got your second shot of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine six months ago or more, or the single shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine more than two months ago. If you have received two doses of J&J, you should get a Pfizer or Moderna booster six months after your second J&J shot.
  • New international students: If you have gotten a vaccine authorized by the World Health Organization but not one authorized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, you are immediately eligible for a booster (you may wait 28 days following your last dose). Only one booster dose (either Pfizer or Moderna) is required for those individuals. This is a change from previous university policy (which required those with international vaccines to be revaccinated), based on emerging science related to the efficacy of boosters.
  • Rolling deadline: Those who are not yet eligible for a booster as of Feb. 1 will be required to receive a booster as soon as they become eligible (six months after a second shot of Pfizer or Moderna, six months after a J&J booster, or two months after receiving the Johnson & Johnson vaccine). Those individuals will have two weeks after they become eligible to get the booster and upload their documentation to the Vaccine Management System.
  • Exceptions: If you have an approved medical or religious exemption to the COVID vaccine, it carries over to the booster requirement. You do not need to apply again.
  • Don’t delay: If you can get a booster shot prior to the return to campus in January, we urge you to do so. Booster appointments can be made now through MyChart or at state and local vaccination sites and pharmacies. Additional on-campus clinics for boosters are in the process of being scheduled. See the Coronavirus Information website for the most up-to-date information.
In the meantime, we urge you to take precautions to keep yourself and the community safe: Wear a mask, get tested regularly, monitor yourself for symptoms, avoid large gatherings (particularly indoors), and complete the Prodensity health check questions each day you’re on campus.
 
If you have any symptoms (even if you think it’s just a cold) or if you know you have been exposed to COVID, don’t come to campus and call the JHCCC at 443-287-8500 for guidance.
 
For APL staff members who work, teach, or attend classes at other JHU or JHM campuses, the mandates for each campus apply and can supersede APL guidelines.
 
We are pleased to let you know that since last week’s cluster among graduate students, new cases have significantly declined, and we have not seen secondary transmission related to that incident. Still, the omicron variant appears to be highly contagious. Vaccination and boosters are important tools, and we all need to do our parts to keep our community and neighbors healthy.
 
We hope you will have a safe conclusion to the fall semester and an opportunity to rest over the holidays.
 
Stephen Gange
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
 
Jon Links
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer


Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health & Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs

Dear Johns Hopkins Community: 

We hope you have plans for a relaxing and enjoyable winter break. We also hope that in your remaining days on campus and during time away you continue to exercise good public health practices. We have seen some uptick in cases among members of the Johns Hopkins community since Thanksgiving, including our first detected instance of the omicron variant, and we urge you to continue masking and exercising caution about social gatherings.
 
Before many of us are away from campus, we have a few reminders and some helpful information for you. 
JHU Testing Over Winter Break and Upon Returning
 
If you will not be on campus for the entire break (Dec. 22 through Jan. 23), you do not need to test. 
 
For those who are required to test regularly: If you are away from campus for an entire week (Monday morning to Sunday night) you do not need to test that week. However, if you are on campus at all—even if only once and very briefly—you will need to get tested as follows
  • If you have an exception to the vaccine mandate and normally test two times per week, you will still be required to test. If you plan to be on campus only one day during a given week over the break, you will only be required to test only once. 
  • If you normally test one time per week, you will still be required to test one time.  
When you return to campus, please resume testing at one of the on-campus testing sites. Your Prodensity Campus Pass will remain RED until you are compliant with testing and have a negative result. Review the diagnostic testing page of the JHU Coronavirus Information website for information on how to make a testing appointment in MyChart. 
Changes to the schedule for university testing sites (including both symptomatic and asymptomatic sites) are on the testing locations + schedules page of the Coronavirus Information website. If you develop any symptoms, please call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 443-287-8500. 
 
Regular testing requirements (once or twice per week) for students and those with exceptions will resume on Tuesday, Jan. 4. School of Medicine affiliates will continue to follow Johns Hopkins Medicine’s policies. 
 
Vaccine Boosters
 
Vaccination remains the best way to minimize the risk of illness and help protect your health and the health of those who are more vulnerable or not yet eligible for vaccination. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has expanded eligibility for the COVID-19 booster to everyone age 16 and older. We strongly recommend boosters for all eligible affiliates; appointments can be made at JHM, retail pharmacies, mobile vaccination clinics (walk-up) and local and state vaccination sites.
 
If you haven’t already done so, the winter break is a great time to get your booster so that you can return for the spring semester with an added layer of protection against COVID. 
 
While boosters are not currently required by Johns Hopkins, they may be in the future, so we encourage you to register your booster within the Vaccine Management System when you get it.  
   
Information for Students Who Are Traveling 
Students who will not be on campus for the winter break should register their travel in Prodensity. The university does not need to “approve” travel, but the travel registration will ensure that you are not marked as noncompliant for mandatory testing while you are away from campus. Employees do not need to register their travel. 
We recommend (but do not require) that students get tested for COVID-19 prior to starting their trip back to Baltimore. This is especially important if you have any symptoms that may be consistent with COVID-19. If you have a positive COVID test while you are away, please call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 443-287-8500 for instructions about when you are allowed to return to campus and how we can assist you.  
International Travelers 
If you plan to travel internationally, new federal requirements recently enacted require you to get a COVID-19 viral test (regardless of vaccination status or citizenship) no more than one day before you travel by air into the United States. You must show your negative result to the airline before you board your flight. If you recently recovered from COVID-19, you may instead travel with documentation of your recovery (i.e., your positive COVID-19 viral test result on a sample taken no more than 90 days before the flight’s departure from a foreign country and a letter from a licensed healthcare provider or a public health official stating that you were cleared to travel). 
For students who are traveling internationally, we remind you that countries may restrict travel within their borders, lock down movement, add entry restrictions, and/or change quarantine requirements at any time. If this happens and you cannot return to the United States to continue your studies, there is no guarantee that academic programs will have a remote option, and you may need to return to resume your studies next fall.  
 
Staying Safe Over the Break 
 
Remember, outdoors remains a safer environment than indoors. When you must gather indoors, avoid crowded or poorly ventilated areas. Monitor yourself for occurrence of symptoms and minimize contact if symptoms develop. 
Everyone in communities with substantial or high transmission rates should wear a mask while in public indoor settings, regardless of vaccination status. If you are not fully vaccinated, you should wear a mask anytime you are in a public indoor setting. 
The CDC has created guidance for safer ways to celebrate holidays and we encourage you to review it.  
If each of us follows a few simple precautions, we can enjoy safer travel and celebrating over winter break and protect the health of our JHU friends, classmates, and colleagues when we return. 
Happy holidays and best wishes for the new year, 
Kevin Shollenberger 
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-Being 
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs 
Meredith Stewart 
Interim Vice President for Human Resources      
Stephen Gange       
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs       
Jon Links       

Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer  

Dear Johns Hopkins Community:

Welcome back! We hope you had a relaxing and fun Thanksgiving break. As you return to campus, please take a minute to assess how you are feeling. We have already seen flu and COVID cases among members of our campus community who assumed they “just had a cold” and came to campus with symptoms. If you have any COVID or flu-like symptoms, including fever, muscle or body aches, coughing, congestion or a runny nose, difficulty breathing, diarrhea, or fatigue, do not come to campus. Instead, call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center (JHCCC), whose representatives will likely suggest that you get tested for COVID and, in some cases, for flu. The center's number is 443-287-8500. Do not attend work/class or gather with friends until the JHCCC calls you with your test results and gives you further instructions. If you hear that someone at a Thanksgiving gathering you attended has now tested positive, call the JHCCC and follow its instructions.
Faculty have been asked to honor the JHCCC’s directives to students. We do not want students with symptoms or who may have been exposed to the virus to come to campus without first speaking with the JHCCC. It is likely that the JHCCC will tell such students to remain at home until tested.
Even if you are feeling well, it's important to resume mandatory testing immediately. All vaccinated students are required to test once each week; all unvaccinated students and employees (those with exceptions) are required to test twice each week, except for School of Medicine affiliates, who follow Johns Hopkins Medicine's once-weekly testing policy. Even if you are not required to test weekly, you may consider getting tested, particularly if you have been traveling. Testing is available at several JHU asymptomatic COVID testing sites.
As we are sure you all have seen in the media, there is a new COVID variant of concern (omicron) that has been reported in the last several days. While much remains to be learned about this variant, and no reports have yet occurred in the U.S., mutations that have the potential for the COVID virus to be more competitive (as occurred with delta) continue to be of concern. Johns Hopkins experts will be carefully monitoring the occurrence of this variant and urge the community to remain vigilant and continue adhering to COVID testing and other measures we have put into place as detailed on the JHU Coronavirus Information website and in community messages.    
If you haven't already gotten the flu shot, the deadline is this coming Friday, Dec. 3. This webpage has information on upcoming Johns Hopkins flu clinics. Unless you were vaccinated at an on-campus flu clinic and had your ID card swiped, you must upload proof to the Vaccine Management System or obtain an approved exception. If you want to check your status, you can go to https://vms.jh.edu/.
Again, welcome back to campus!
 
Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs
Meredith Stewart
Interim Vice President for Human Resources    
Stephen Gange      
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
 
Jon Links      

Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer

Dear Johns Hopkins Community,
 
We write to remind you of one of the most important public health precautions you can take as the COVID pandemic continues and flu season ramps up: Do not come to campus if you are sick.
 
We are already seeing flu cases in addition to COVID cases among members of our campus community. In a number of instances, people assumed they “just had a cold” and came to campus with symptoms. Please remember that neither the COVID vaccine nor the flu vaccine automatically prevent infection or transmission to others with whom you interact; the main point of vaccination is to significantly reduce the risk of severe illness. If you are vaccinated and contract COVID or the flu, your symptoms may be mild, but you are still infected and still able to transmit the disease to others who may not be so fortunate.
 
If you have any COVID or flu-like symptoms, including fever, muscle or body aches, coughing, congestion or a runny nose, difficulty breathing, diarrhea, or fatigue, do not come to campus or work. Instead, call the Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center (JHCCC) at 443-287-8500, which will almost always result in you getting tested for COVID. In some cases, you will also be tested for the flu.
 
Additionally, please do not return to campus or work, or travel, until the JHCCC calls you with your test results and gives you further instructions.
 
As a reminder, students should use Prodensity’s Travel Registry feature to pause testing requirements when they are away from campus (or while traveling for holidays).
 
Sincerely,
 
Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs
Meredith Stewart
Interim Vice President for Human Resources    
Stephen Gange      

Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

 
Jon Links      Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer
Dear Johns Hopkins Community:
 
We hope you have plans for a relaxing and fun Thanksgiving break coming up next week. Before many of us are away from campus, we have a few reminders and some helpful information for you.
 
The Flu Shot – Get It and Submit It!
 
If you have not yet received your flu shot, please do so as soon as possible. All JHU faculty, staff (including postdoctoral fellows and bargaining unit members), and students who are or who plan to be on our U.S. campuses this winter are required to upload proof of flu vaccination to the VMS before the end of the day Friday, Dec. 3. Per our email on Nov. 9, this deadline was extended for most JHU affiliates. School of Medicine affiliates will continue to follow Johns Hopkins Medicine’s deadline and requirements.
 
Unless you were vaccinated at an on-campus flu clinic and had your ID card swiped, you must upload proof to the VMS or obtain an approved exception. If you want to check your status, you can go to vms.jh.edu. If you have not yet received your flu shot, please do so as soon as possible. As a reminder, the flu shot is free anywhere for employees and students who have a JHU health plan. You also can use the JHU voucher (available at vms.jh.edu) for a free shot at Walgreens. Many pharmacies are requiring appointments and not taking walk-ins this year, so we encourage people to book appointments now if needed. This webpage has information on upcoming Johns Hopkins flu clinics.
 
Mandatory Covid Testing During Thanksgiving Week
 
For those who are required to test regularly: If you are away from campus for the entire week of Thanksgiving (from midnight on Sunday, Nov. 21, to 11:59 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 28), you do not need to test that week.
 
However, if you are on campus at all—even if only once and very briefly—you will need to get tested.
  • If you have an exception and normally test two times per week, you will be required to test only once during the week of Thanksgiving.
  • If you normally test one time per week, you will still be required to test one time.
The following changes to hours for university testing sites are planned for Thanksgiving week:
MondayTuesday (11/22– 23): Normal hours except at SAIS, which will close at 6 p.m.
Wednesday (11/24): All testing sites close at noon
ThursdaySaturday (11/2527): Testing sites are closed
Sunday (11/28): Normal hours for Charles Commons; Rec Center site will be closed
Regular testing requirements (once or twice per week) for students and those with exceptions will resume on Monday, Nov. 29.
 
If you are not required to get regular testing but want to get tested after the break, you can—as always—make an appointment in the MyChart system. Testing details are on the JHU Coronavirus Information website.
 
If you have any symptoms, please call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 443-287-8500. Symptomatic testing will be available throughout the week of Thanksgiving except for closures on Thursday and Friday, Nov. 25 and 26.
 
Staying Safe Over the Break
 
Vaccination remains the best way to minimize the risk of illness. This will help protect your health and the health of those who are more vulnerable or not yet eligible for vaccination. Given evolving data about waning immunity, consider getting a booster if you are eligible.
 
Remember, outdoors remains a safer environment than indoors. When you must gather indoors, avoid crowded or poorly ventilated areas. Monitor yourself for occurrence of symptoms and minimize contact if symptoms develop.
 
Everyone in communities with substantial or high transmission rates should wear a mask while in public indoor settings, regardless of vaccination status. If you are not fully vaccinated, you should wear a mask any time you are in a public indoor setting.
 
For students who are traveling internationally, we remind you that countries may restrict travel within their borders, lock down movement, add entry restrictions, and/or change quarantine requirements at any time. If this happens and you cannot return to the U.S. to continue your studies, there is no guarantee that academic programs will have a remote option, and you may need to return to resume your studies in the spring or even next fall.
 
The CDC has more information on how to celebrate the holiday safely, and we encourage you to review its guidance. If we each follow a few simple precautions, we can enjoy safer travel over Thanksgiving and protect the health of our JHU friends, classmates, and colleagues when we return.
 
Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs
 
Meredith Stewart
Interim Vice President for Human Resources    
 
Stephen Gange      
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs      
 
Jon Links      
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer


Dear JHU Community: 
 
We have been hearing from many people that it has been a challenging year to obtain appointments for influenza vaccinations and that Johns Hopkins clinics have been filling up quickly. Therefore, the deadline for the JHU mandate is being extended by two weeks, to Friday, December 3
 
Thank you to everyone who has already gotten their flu shot this year. This is an important step toward protecting the health and well-being of all members of our university community. All JHU faculty, staff (including postdoctoral fellows and bargaining unit members), and students who are or who plan to be on our U.S. campuses are required to upload proof of flu vaccination to the Vaccine Management System before the deadline. You may also use the VMS to request a medical or religious exception. Even if you have an approved exception from previous years, you will still need to request a new exception in the VMS this year. Instructions are available online.
 
We are working to add additional clinics, which can be scheduled through MyChart: Select Visits, then Schedule an Appointment, then Flu Shot–Occupational and Student Health if you want to see available options. If you need assistance accessing MyChart or booking an appointment, you may go to a JHU COVID testing site and ask the staff there for help. You may also email testinginfo@jhu.edu.
 
As a reminder, the flu shot is free anywhere for employees and students who have a JHU health plan. You can also use the JHU voucher (available at vms.jh.edu) for a free shot at Walgreens. Many pharmacies are requiring appointments and not taking walk-ins this year, so we encourage people to book appointments now if needed. For Hopkins clinics, keep an eye on MyChart for future openings. This web page also has information regarding where the shot is available at Hopkins and will be updated as additional clinics are added. 
 
Regardless of where you get your shot, make sure you get documentation before you leave and then upload it into the VMS. The only place where information is uploaded automatically into the VMS is at an on-site JHU occupational/student health clinic, not at Walgreens (as in previous years) or JHM physicians’ offices.
 
If you have received the vaccination, but don’t have documentation to upload, you can get it from the provider's website (e.g., Walgreens, CVS, etc.) or from a state website called Maryland MyIR, which is a free website service that allows consumers to view and print copies of their official vaccination records directly from ImmuNet, Maryland's immunization information system. 
 
JHU School of Medicine employees, postdoctoral trainees, and students fall under Johns Hopkins Medicine’s mandate and policies. The deadline and requirements differ, so please refer to JHM’s guidance online.
 
For APL staff members who work, teach, or attend classes at other JHU or JHM campuses, the mandates for each campus apply and can supersede APL guidelines.
 
If you have any additional questions, you can email VMS@jhu.edu for help.
Sincerely,

Meredith Stewart
Interim Vice President for Human Resources

Stephen Gange
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

Jon Links
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer

Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-BeingInterim Vice Provost for Student Affairs

Dear Johns Hopkins Community:

We are pleased to announce that Johns Hopkins Medicine is now offering three brands of COVID-19 boosters for those who have completed an initial COVID vaccination. These additional doses are available for individuals at high risk for infection because of their medical, work, or living conditions.

Additionally, all those who previously received a single dose of the Janssen/Johnson & Johnson (J&J) vaccine are eligible for a booster. JHU community members may make an appointment at a Johns Hopkins clinic if they qualify.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has recommended the boosters for people who are aged 65 and older, live in long-term care settings, have certain underlying medical conditions, or work or live in high-risk settings. Recently, the federal Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has added Moderna and J&J to its list of manufacturers authorized for boosters. The FDA has also determined that it is safe for individuals to receive a different vaccine brand for their booster dose from the brand they received initially. The option to schedule a booster from a different manufacturer than your initial vaccine will be offered by Johns Hopkins vaccine clinics in the coming weeks.

To receive an approved booster dose at a Johns Hopkins vaccine clinic, you must schedule an appointment through MyChart. No walk-ins will be permitted at Johns Hopkins clinic sites. Beginning Oct. 26, updated appointments will be available. Log in to MyChart. Choose “schedule an appointment” and select the “COVID-19 vaccine” tile.

You will not be able to request a specific brand on site at the Johns Hopkins Medicine vaccination clinics. However, each Johns Hopkins vaccination clinic will administer a specific vaccine brand, as follows:

  • Turner Concourse (East Baltimore campus): Pfizer
  • Johns Hopkins Bayview Medical Center: Moderna and J&J
  • Sibley Memorial Hospital: Pfizer
  • Howard County General Hospital: Pfizer
  • Suburban Hospital: Moderna and Pfizer
You may also view the vaccination brands offered at our mobile vaccination clinics. Walk-ups are welcome at mobile vaccination clinics.

At this time, JHU and JHM personnel are not required to receive a booster under the COVID-19 vaccine policies. For general information and to check eligibility, visit the COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters document on the Johns Hopkins Medicine website.

Sincerely,
 
Gabe Kelen
Director, Johns Hopkins Office of Critical Event Preparedness and Response (CEPAR)
Director, Department of Emergency Medicine
The Johns Hopkins Hospital and Health System
 
Lisa Maragakis
Senior Director of Healthcare Epidemiology and Infection Prevention
Johns Hopkins Health System
 
Robert Carter
Senior Director
Johns Hopkins Medicine Office of Emergency Management
 
Clarence Lam
Interim Director, Occupational Health Services
Johns Hopkins Medicine
 
Stephen Gange
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs
Johns Hopkins University
 
Jon Links
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer

Johns Hopkins University

Dear Johns Hopkins Community:
 
Students, trainees, postdoctoral fellows, faculty, and staff have until Nov. 19 to get their mandatory annual influenza (flu) vaccine and to upload proof to the Vaccine Management System (VMS). Individuals seeking a medical or religious exception must apply through the VMS by Nov. 9.
 
Many thanks to the 40% of all JHU employees and the 33% of students who have registered their flu shot so far. It’s important for all of us to do our part to keep each other safe during flu season, and getting the shot is a requirement for spending time on our campuses.
 
Links to the official policy, ways to schedule a flu shot, and information about exceptions are online. While a few spots remain at JHU on-site clinics, the flu vaccine is free with most health insurance at any outpatient pharmacy, health care provider office, or city/county health department clinic. JHU affiliates may also use a voucher for a free, JHU-sponsored vaccination at any Walgreens. To use the Walgreens voucher, you must either print out the voucher (available on the VMS website) or display it on your phone at the time of service. Click "flu voucher" to download it. Appointments may be necessary, though some locations allow walk-ins.
 
For on-site flu clinics and Walgreens flu vaccinations, please complete this vaccination form prior to your appointment and bring your JHU identification with you. If you get the flu vaccine at Walgreens or anywhere other than at a JHU on-site Occupational and Student Health vaccine clinic, proof of immunization must be uploaded to the VMS. This applies even if the doctor/doctor’s office that gave you the vaccine is within the Johns Hopkins network.
 
Note that the mandate outlined in this message does not apply to JHU employees who are 100% remote—that is, those who never visit any Johns Hopkins facility or conduct business in any public setting on Johns Hopkins’ behalf. JHU School of Medicine employees, postdoctoral trainees, and students fall under Johns Hopkins Medicine’s mandate and policies, which differ. Please refer to JHM’s guidance for more information. For APL staff members who work, teach, or attend classes at other JHU or JHM campuses, the mandates for each campus apply and can supersede APL guidelines.
 
If you have any questions that are not answered on our websites, you can email vms@jhu.edu. We appreciate your support.
 
Sincerely,
 
Sunil Kumar
Provost and Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs
 
Laurent Heller
Senior Vice President for Finance and Administration
 
Kevin Shollenberger
Vice Provost for Student Health and Well-Being
Interim Vice Provost for Student Affairs
 
Meredith Stewart
Interim Vice President for Human Resources

Executive Director, Total Rewards


Dear Johns Hopkins Community:

We are excited to have students returning to our campuses and to be starting another academic year. As we increase in-person activities this fall, we are committed to keeping you safe, and, as we indicated last week, we have decided to take some additional precautions to prevent the spread of COVID-19 among our faculty, students, and staff. We would also like to remind you of some important guidelines to help you protect yourself and your colleagues and to invite you to a town hall next week.

More than 95% of our faculty and 91% of our staff have documented their full vaccination against COVID, and we expect that once students who have not had the opportunity to receive an FDA-authorized vaccine arrive on campus, their numbers will be similar. Thanks to our high vaccination rates and other safeguards we have employed throughout the pandemic, such as masking, testing, and restrictions on eating and drinking, we have seen no documented cases of transmission in laboratory or classroom settings since the beginning of the pandemic. And the diligence of our community in maintaining good public health practices is evident in the initial test results from students moving into our residence halls—less than 0.5% were positive for COVID.

Based on CDC advisories and our consultation with experts in public health and infectious disease, we are confident that these measures are sufficient at this time without the need for distancing or de-densification in our facilities or on university transportation. However, the number of COVID cases regionally and nationally has increased in recent weeks, so out of an abundance of caution, we are enacting the following policies.
  • Expanded testing requirements for undergraduates. In order to stay aware of conditions among our community and assist individuals who may have been exposed, JHU will require all vaccinated undergraduates, including those who live off campus, to take a saliva test once a week, starting Monday, August 30. (As with other members of the community, undergraduates with approved exceptions to the vaccination mandate will be required to test twice weekly.) Testing locations and information are on the JHU coronavirus information website. Those who have tested positive for COVID in the past 90 days will be excused from testing because it would create false positives. If this is the case, please email SHWCintake@jhu.edu.
  • Pregnancy exception discontinued. Given recent guidance from the CDC, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, and the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine recommending that pregnant women be vaccinated against COVID, we will no longer allow exceptions to vaccination for women who are pregnant or trying to conceive. Those who have already been granted such an exception will now need to provide documentation of their vaccination or approved exception on medical or religious grounds.
  • Business travel restrictions. JHU will allow only essential university-sponsored travel, which must be approved by your division. Affiliates will be required to submit travel approval documentation with their expense reports.
We also offer the following reminders:
  • Stay home if you have symptoms. If you have symptoms consistent with COVID, stay home and call the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 443-287-8500, seven days a week, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. You will be provided instructions on whether you need to get tested for COVID and whether and how long you should isolate/quarantine.
  • Mask use is mandatory indoors for everyone at all times. Even if you are more than six feet from others, you must still wear a mask indoors except when alone in an office with a closed door or when eating in a safely distanced manner.
  • Complete daily health check with Prodensity. Please be sure to download and use the Prodensity app for daily health checks. We are centrally monitoring the compliance of faculty, students, and staff across the university, but at this time, the system should not be used for spot checks of whether an individual has a red or green pass.
  • Respect others’ privacy related to vaccination status. Individual students, staff, and faculty may not inquire about another affiliate’s vaccination status. Compliance is being monitored at both the central and school levels. The only exception is for supervisors in a clinical setting (e.g., medical or nursing students in clinical rotations).
The School of Medicine continues to follow Johns Hopkins Medicine policies for vaccination. APL has its own policies for individuals on its property, but for APL staff members who work, teach or attend classes at other JHU or JHM campuses, the mandates for each campus apply and can supersede APL guidelines.

If you have any questions about our policies or guidelines, we invite you to attend a virtual town hall hosted on covidinfo.jhu.edu next Wednesday, September 1, at 12:30 p.m. You may submit questions during the event or in advance at HRCOVID19@jhu.edu.

Thank you for helping us have a successful and safe semester. We will continue to keep you updated by email and through the coronavirus information website in the coming weeks.

Sincerely,

Stephen Gange
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

Jon Links
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer


Dear Faculty, Students, and Staff:
  
Keeping our community safe and healthy remains our foremost priority as we all continue to navigate the pandemic together. The overwhelming majority of you have taken the most important step in that effort by getting vaccinated against the virus. Ninety-five percent of faculty and 92 percent of staff have submitted documentation that they have been fully vaccinated; data on students will be forthcoming once they have returned to campus. 
 
On top of the protection afforded by our high vaccination rates, we are making two adjustments in our protocols at this time based on the latest research and case trends, which show a surge in the delta varient in recent weeks. We are limiting allowable vaccines to those that are FDA-approved and developing plans to increase COVID-19 testing. 
 
As a reminder, our plans for the fall include a universitywide mandate for COVID vaccinations, twice weekly COVID testing and masking for those who have approved vaccination exceptions, weekly COVID testing for vaccinated residential undergraduate students, limitations on the size of in-person classes and events, and heightened ventilation and air filtration. In the last several weeks, we have also instituted a universal indoor face-covering requirement.
 
Together, these measures offer strong protection against the spread of COVID within and by our community and allow us to return to campus as planned.
 
However, there are recent reports that certain vaccines may be less effective against the delta variant. Therefore, out of an abundance of caution and based on the recommendations of our Health Advisory Group, we are instituting the following changes in our campus operations.  
 
1. Only FDA-authorized COVID vaccines will be accepted. These three vaccines (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, J&J/Janssen) have all shown effectiveness against known variants. Any individuals who have not received one of these vaccines must be revaccinated with a full course of one of these vaccines upon arrival, that is two doses, properly spaced, for Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna, and one for J&J/Janssen. 
 
Previously, we allowed any vaccine authorized by the World Health Organization, but given growing data about the potential for lower effectiveness against delta, we are now mandating revaccination for those who have received non-FDA-approved vaccines. The university will assist students if they need help, and vaccination information is on the Johns Hopkins Medicine website
 
Individuals who have uploaded to the Vaccine Management System documentation of vaccination with Oxford/AstraZeneca, Covishield, Novavax, Sinopharm, or Sinovac will be contacted and asked to schedule an appointment to receive one of the FDA-authorized vaccines. You must complete your vaccinations and upload documentation to the Vaccination Management System (VMS) by Oct. 8. Your prior submission will be removed so that you can upload new documentation after your final dose. You may not upload documentation until that point. In the meantime, you will be allowed to come on campus, but you will be required to follow the same masking and testing requirements (twice weekly) as those with vaccination exceptions until you are fully vaccinated (two weeks after your final dose).
 
2. Asymptomatic COVID testing will be expanded. Our current policy requires anyone on-campus who has an approved vaccination exception to be tested twice a week. Further, all vaccinated residential undergraduates are required to be tested once a week. To facilitate early detection of any COVID outbreaks within our community, we are developing plans to expand mandatory asymptomatic testing, and we expect to provide details in the coming days.
 
Asymptomatic COVID testing will remain available on a voluntary basis for all students, postdoctoral fellows, faculty, and staff. Details on testing locations are on the JHU coronavirus information website. Anyone who exhibits COVID symptoms is directed to call the Johns Hopkins COVID Call Center (JHCCC) at 443-287-8500, seven days a week, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m. The JCCC will arrange for testing if needed and assist in transmitting information to Occupational Health or Student Affairs.
 
The School of Medicine continues to follow Johns Hopkins Medicine policies for vaccination. APL has its own policies for individuals on its property but for APL staff members who work, teach or attend classes at other JHU or JHM campuses, the mandates for each campus apply and can supersede APL guidelines.
 
As always, we are closely monitoring conditions, and both Johns Hopkins University and Johns Hopkins Medicine are evaluating additional precautions to further protect our community and our neighbors. We will keep you updated on any changes to our protocols. Thank you for maintaining proper COVID safety practices throughout the pandemic and assisting us with preparing for a productive, rewarding, and healthy fall semester.
 
Stay safe and be well,
 
Stephen Gange    
Professor and Executive Vice Provost for Academic Affairs    
 
Jon Links    
Professor, Vice Provost, and Chief Risk Officer    
 
Jane Schlegel  

Vice President and Chief Administrative Officer


Information and Resources

JHU Coronavirus Resources

JHU Coronavirus Information
JHU Return to Campus Guide
JHU Social Compact
Your Health & Safety
JHU Coronavirus FAQ
Teaching, Learning & Working

LEARN HOW JOHNS HOPKINS EXPERTS IN GLOBAL PUBLIC HEALTH, INFECTIOUS DISEASE, AND EMERGENCY PREPAREDNESS HAVE BEEN AT THE FOREFRONT OF THE INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE TO COVID-19.
 

Coronavirus Resource Center