February 4 - Updates on COVID-19
Soaring over the UCI Ecological Preserve. Photo by Steve Zylius/UCI.
TODAY'S CAMPUS UPDATES
Chancellor Town Hall highlights
A fuller recap of today’s Town Hall meeting will be available tomorrow via UCI Forward, but here are a few takeaways:
Employees working remotely should expect to continue doing so through June 30. Beyond that, campus officials are developing guidelines for long-term remote or hybrid work, subject to approval from your supervisor.
By mid-April, vaccine supplies are anticipated to be high enough to accommodate everyone who wants a shot. In the meantime, when UCI employees become eligible for vaccination, they will receive an email invitation to schedule an appointment at the Bren Events Center.
Although the vaccine isn’t mandatory, it is highly recommended, rigorously tested and very safe (the rate of adverse reactions is 11 per million).
Campus parking will remain free until July 1.
UCI is not offering any incentives for early retirement.
2021 commencement plans are expected to be announced by March.
Vaccine offered to UCI employees living in Long Beach
If you live in Long Beach and work at UCI, you’re eligible to be vaccinated in that city. According to Long Beach’s Health & Human Services website, residents in the “education and childcare” category -- which the city defines to encompass “all faculty and staff (including facilities and maintenance staff) at preschools, K-12, community colleges and universities” -- can sign up for shots, subject to vaccine availability.
Six new campus cases*
Three student residents and three campus employees tested positive for COVID-19 on Wednesday. The total number of active cases was 33. For more details, visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard.
UCI COVID-19 NEWS AND EVENTS
Better sleep when feeling anxious
Part 4 of the UCI Counseling Center’s pandemic video series offers tips for getting proper rest despite anxiety. The video clocks in at just over a minute. Tomorrow’s newsletter will include the final episode in this series.
GENERAL COVID-19 NEWS
This section curates noteworthy coronavirus news, trends and opinions. No endorsement by UCI is implied. Note: Some news sites require subscriptions to read articles. The UCI Libraries offer free subscriptions to The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and OC Register ;for students, faculty and staff.
Assembly bill would speed reopening of theme parks
A Fullerton Democrat is co-sponsoring legislation to let Disneyland and other big theme parks reopen in the same earlier tier as small amusement parks.
Feds to open mass vaccination sites in California
The federal government will open its first mass COVID-19 vaccination sites in California – one at the Oakland Coliseum and one at Cal State Los Angeles.
Teachers face growing pressure to return to classrooms
The battle over reopening California schools intensified Wednesday when Gov. Gavin Newsom, the Biden administration and the Southern California chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics all said campuses can safely reopen without teachers being vaccinated.
AstraZeneca vaccine can slow the transmission of virus
According to a new paper by researchers at the University of Oxford, the AstraZeneca vaccine may have the potential to slow the transmission of the virus. Researchers also found that a single dose of the vaccine was 76% effective at preventing COVID-19.
Vaccine skepticism a problem in France, Germany and U.S.
Nearly four in ten people in France, more than 25% of those in the U.S. and 23% in Germany say they definitely or probably won’t get vaccinated against COVID-19, according to a survey that underlines the challenge facing governments.
HOPE, INSPIRATION, LAUGHTER
Amid the heartbreaking loss of life and economic hardship wrought by the coronavirus, we recognize the need for stories of kindness, hope, courage and humor.
Cook survives 3 days inside sunken tugboat
Divers sent to recover dead bodies also found an unexpected survivor, a cook who managed to stay alive through a series of odd coincidences and luck. A videocaptured the rescue.
How 10 classic toys were invented
A bite-sized look at the history of such favorites as Lincoln Logs, Troll dolls, sea monkeys and Tinkertoys.
If you have a shoutout, or if you’d like to share what you’ve been up to during the pandemic, send photos and/or words about your activities, workstation, volunteering, etc., to email@example.com or post on social media with the #UCIconnected hashtag.
* Potential workplace exposure: UCI provides this notification of a potential workplace COVID-19 exposure. Employees and subcontractors who were in these locations on the dates listed may have been exposed to the coronavirus. You may be entitled to various benefits under applicable federal and state laws and University-specific policies and agreements. The full notification is available on the UCI Forward site. If you have been identified as a close contact to a COVID-19 case, the UCI Contact Tracing Program will contact you and provide additional direction.