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COVID-19 Update: New CDC Guidelines

Dear members of the Emerson community:

First, we’d like to thank everyone for their efforts and cooperation with the College’s COVID-19 policies, procedures, and guidelines this semester. Your commitment and patience has resulted in an extremely low positivity rate within Emerson and certainly has helped to maintain the health and safety of our community.

However, now is not the time to let our guard down as we enter the final weeks of in-person classes on the Boston campus. As you may have seen in news coverage, and as we recently have learned through our conversations with the Boston Public Health Commission and the City of Boston, the positivity rate throughout the city is increasing. It is, therefore, more important than ever that we continue to follow the guidelines that will keep us, and our community, safe and healthy.

In addition, we want to make you aware that the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has recently adjusted its guidance on what is considered a close contact. The new guidance indicates that 15 minutes spent cumulatively over a 24 hour period within six feet of an individual with COVID-19 is considered an exposure to the virus (instead of just 15 continuous minutes). Boston Public Health guidance goes further to state that such an exposure can occur even when wearing a face covering. With this shift, and the increase in positivity rate within the city, we must encourage everyone to remain vigilant, wear your masks anytime you’re around other individuals and not in your private space alone, keep physical distance at all times, practice healthy hand hygiene, and continue to follow the testing protocol we have put in place.

In order for us to get through the next 33 days of in person classes we must all work together as One Emerson. 

Thank you, and be well,
Erik Muurisepp
COVID-19 Lead
AVP Campus Life

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