Boise State’s Public Health Office advised all community members, including vaccinated individuals, to wear facial coverings in indoor campus spaces in an email sent to university staff Wednesday morning. This update is a recommendation, not a requirement.
The advisory comes after the Centers for Disease Control recommended that fully vaccinated people wear masks to reduce transmission of the COVID-19 Delta variant, and the City of Boise began requiring masks to be worn in indoor city-owned facilities on Tuesday.
“Although ongoing research confirms that COVID vaccines are safe and effective, it is possible for fully vaccinated individuals to unknowingly spread the virus to unvaccinated individuals,” the advisory read. “This is particularly concerning because the Delta variant, which is present in Ada County, is highly transmissible.”
The Delta variant is causing an influx of mostly unvaccinated COVID-19 patients in local hospitals. The Idaho Capital Sun reported on Wednesday morning that “The number of people hospitalized with COVID-19 in Idaho has doubled this month…[and] the number of ICU patients with COVID-19 nearly tripled.”
Boise State’s COVID dashboard indicates four campus cases of COVID-19, the highest count since early May. The new advisory comes as Boise State prepares to welcome students back to campus for fall semester, with classes starting August 23.. Public health personnel have previously confirmed with The Arbiter that the COVID dashboard will continue to be updated for the foreseeable future.
Boise State’s vaccination clinic remains open for free vaccines and appointments at the Campus School Building.