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Together We Will Remain Healthy at Thomas More (january 25, 2021)

Dear Thomas More Community,

The number of positive Covid cases continues to decline from 10 last Monday to 6 today. We currently have 26 individuals in quarantine, which is 11 fewer than last week. Both the number of positive Covid cases and the number of individuals in quarantine are in the Low Alert Threshold. Also, on the good news front is that we are seeing an overall decline in the incidence rate for most area counties.

We continue to work the Governor’s Office, AIKCU, St. Elizabeth Healthcare, and the Northern Kentucky Health Department to develop a vaccination plan for Thomas More University. Studies show that COVID-19 vaccines are very effective at keeping individuals from getting COVID-19. Experts also think that getting a COVID-19 vaccine may keep individuals from getting seriously ill even if they do get COVID-19. Therefore, we encourage all individuals to consider vaccination in consultation with their health care provider. Employees who are eligible may work with their supervisor to complete vaccination appointments during work hours.

Kentucky’s vaccination plan describes the phases and the individuals prioritized during each phase. Currently, individuals in phase 1A and 1B are eligible for vaccination. This includes long term care facilities, assisted living facilities, health care personnel, first responders, K-12 school personnel, and individuals age 70 or older. If you are eligible in these phases, or a part of your home state’s vaccination plan, we encourage you to pursue vaccination in consultation with your health care provider. In Kentucky, vaccinations are provided by a local partnership of HealthPoint Family Care, NKY Health, and St. Elizabeth Healthcare. Information is available online for scheduling.

Employees (faculty, staff, administrators, and vendor employees) of Thomas More University will be eligible for the vaccine under Phase 1C, scheduled to begin February 1 depending on vaccine availability in the region. Students will follow the schedule below contingent upon age and/or CDC highest risk conditions.

Phases: Kentucky’s Vaccination Plan

1ALong term care facilities, assisted living facilities, health care personnel
1BFirst responders, anyone age 70 or older, K-12 school personnel
1CAnyone age 60 or older, anyone age 16 or older with CDC highest risk C19 risk conditions, all essential workers
2Anyone age 40 or older
3Anyone age 16 or older
4Children under the age of 16 if the vaccine is approved for this age group (est. 18% of KY population)

In accordance with CDC, state, and local guidelines, important safety measures, such as masks, social distancing, symptom monitoring, and adherence to our quarantine and isolation procedures, will still be required for vaccinated individuals. We will continue to evaluate the recommendations and will modify our Healthy at Thomas More protocols when appropriate.

Here are several important links with more information:

Kentucky’s vaccination plan

Kentucky Department of Health frequently asked questions including dosage, safety, vaccination for those who are currently symptomatic, have COVID-19, or have had COVID-19, and logistics of vaccination.

Northern Kentucky Health Department COVID-19 Vaccine Information, including eligibility, requirements, and scheduling information.

CDC Information regarding vaccination

We will continue to keep you informed as to the vaccination plan and adjustments that may be made to each phase by the Commonwealth or local health officials. I would encourage you to read through Healthy at Thomas More for our policies and procedures for the spring semester. Please remember to wear your mask, practice social distancing, and wash your hands regularly. We all have a responsibility to keep one another and the entire community safe. I encourage you to check your email and the University website on a regular basis for additional information.

Thank you for your continued attention to the safety and well-being of our community; please continue to do your part in keeping yourself, your family, and our community healthy and safe.

Best, President Chillo