Public Health Update – March 5, 2021

Date: March 5, 2021

From: Tom McLarney, MD

Subject: Public Health Update / Webinar – March 5, 2021

To the Wesleyan Community:

The State of Connecticut continues to provide updates to the vaccine rollout schedule and recently announced a shift to age-based eligibility for vaccines (with the exception that all who work in education grades K-12 are now eligible). The state is making excellent progress: 75 percent of those ages 75 and older are vaccinated, while 52 percent of those ages 65-74 are vaccinated. Vaccinations are now available for those 55 and older. The rollout schedule for the coming months remains subject to change, and we will keep the campus community apprised of important developments.

Three vaccines are currently approved for use: those made by Pfizer, Moderna, and Johnson & Johnson. Although the J&J vaccine is reported to be 72 percent effective (as opposed to 95 percent for the other two), the most important metric is that all three vaccines provide complete protection against hospitalization and death. The best advice regarding vaccines is to take whichever one is available to you.

Wesleyan encourages members of the campus community to be vaccinated when eligible. The state is no longer requesting that the university upload the names of employees into the Vaccine Administration Management System (VAMS), so please do not wait to receive an email from VAMS. There are a number of options for scheduling vaccinations, and the state maintains a site for scheduling information.

Unless guidance from the CDC changes, regular testing will continue on campus, including for those who have been vaccinated. It is not yet clear the extent to which vaccinated individuals can act as carriers of the virus.

We look forward to resuming normal life on campus in the fall.

A recording of the webinar is available on the Keep Wes Safe site.

Thank you.

Tom McLarney, MD