University of Michigan updates COVID safety policies, encourages self-reporting of vaccines

ANN ARBOR – Individuals who are fully vaccinated and self-report their vaccine status to the University of Michigan will no longer need to practice social distancing or wear a mask in most areas of the school’s three campuses, according to an updated policy which went into effect on Monday.

Unvaccinated individuals or those who decline to share their vaccine information must continue to physically distance from others and wear face coverings indoors.

The policy applies to all faculty, students, staff and visitors to the Ann Arbor, Dearborn and Flint campuses.

Currently, face coverings are still required in classrooms regardless of vaccination status, in health care areas and on campus transportation. The school’s approach to classrooms may be modified as it assesses vaccination rates within its community, according to a release.

Michigan Medicine has set its own policies and will be updating its employees within the next couple of weeks on any changes in the workplace. U-M expects all of its researchers to wear face coverings when engaging with study participants.

“We are pleased to see the progress of our community throughout this pandemic, and the lifting of masking and distancing for fully vaccinated individuals while indoors is one more important milestone as we resume more traditional activities,” President Mark Schlissel said in a release. “Vaccines work and are safe.

“All members of the U-M community are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated and self-report their vaccination information as soon as possible to inform the university’s COVID-19 management plan for the upcoming fall term.”

U-M community members who have been vaccinated are asked to self-report their vaccination status as soon as possible via Wolverine Access.

Starting later this month, students, faculty and staff in Ann Arbor who report their vaccine information will have the chance to win various weekly and monthly prizes. Self-reporting of vaccination information is required for students planning to live in campus housing by July 16.

According to a release, the policy update is in line with the newest Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and Michigan Department of Health and Human Services guidance.

Michigan Medicine and the University Health Service continue to offer vaccination appointments.

Unvaccinated students, including those who plan to live on campus and have received an exemption and those who choose not to share their vaccine status, will be required to undergo weekly COVID testing in the fall. Optional weekly asymptomatic testing will remain available for faculty and staff.

For more information, visit U-M Campus Blueprint.

About the Author:

Meredith has worked for WDIV since August 2017 and was voted one of Washtenaw County's best journalists in 2019 by eCurrent's readers. She covers the community of Ann Arbor and has a Master's degree in International Broadcast Journalism from City University London, UK.