Last month, we shared with the community the deadline for receiving and uploading proof of a COVID-19 booster shot. As the start of the semester is just around the corner, we wanted to reach out to provide a reminder of this deadline, and to provide an update to Bentley’s isolation and quarantine protocols.
Here’s what you need to know:
• Booster eligibility has changed to five months (formerly six months) from your second dose.
• Please upload your booster shot documentation now to meet the deadline of your move-in date or not later than Feb. 1 (or two weeks after you become eligible if it’s less than five months since your second dose).
• Isolation and quarantine guidelines have changed and being up to date on vaccination (boosted) can help you to avoid quarantine if exposed as a close contact.
All students, faculty and staff without an approved medical or religious exemption are required to receive a COVID-19 booster shot. For most students the deadline to receive your COVID-19 booster shot and upload your updated CDC vaccination card to the Bentley Health Portal is your specific move-in day for residential students and Feb. 1 for non-residential students and students moving onto campus after Feb. 1.
The CDC recently shorted the eligibility interval between second dose and booster from six months to five months. If you received your last vaccine dose less than five months ago (or less than two months ago for the single-dose Janssen/Johnson & Johnson vaccine), the deadline to receive your booster shot is two weeks after you first become eligible. Because of this recent change, students whose second dose of a two-dose vaccine was between August 1 and September 4 will have until February 3 (two weeks from today) to complete the booster requirement but are strongly encouraged to meet the earlier deadline if possible.
A booster clinic will be held on campus on Jan. 26. Please be on the lookout for sign-up information in a follow-up email tomorrow for those who still need to obtain a booster shot. For questions about the deadline to receive your booster, please email COVIDvaccine@bentley.edu.
To upload your proof of a booster shot, log into the Bentley Health Portal, select “Immunization” at the top of the page, then select “COVID-19 Booster” and enter the date you received your booster shot. Then, select “Upload” at the top of the page and select “COVID 19 Vaccine Card (Initial Series & Booster)” to upload a photo of your updated vaccination record.
Updates to Quarantine Requirements
Bentley has adopted the latest isolation and quarantine guidelines of the CDC. In addition to providing you with an additional layer of protection against serious illness from COVID-19, getting a booster shot has an added benefit and can keep you out of quarantine housing.
Those who are up to date on their COVID-19 vaccination, including having received a booster shot, are not required to quarantine if identified as a close contact and displaying no symptoms. Those who are within the 90-day period since testing positive for COVID-19 are also exempt from quarantine if displaying no symptoms.
For those who are unvaccinated or not up to date on vaccination, meaning you are vaccinated and eligible for a booster but have not received a booster, you must quarantine for five days. On day 6, you will be provided with a rapid test and, if negative, may exit quarantine housing, but must wear a mask in all settings through the tenth full day following last exposure.
Updates to Isolation Requirements
In line with the latest CDC guidelines, those who test positive for COVID-19, regardless of vaccination status, are required to isolate for five full days. If on day 6, you display no symptoms of COVID-19 and have been fever-free for 24-hours without the aid of medication, you may exit isolation, but must wear a mask in all settings through the tenth full day. A timeline for isolation can be found below.
The university asks that those who live within a reasonable distance from campus complete their isolation or quarantine requirements at home, if possible, in order to maintain capacity on campus.
We look forward to students beginning to return to campus in the coming weeks and continue to ask for your cooperation and flexibility in the face of challenges that are beyond our control. We remain committed to keeping our campus community healthy and safe, and ask that you do your part by uploading your proof of a booster before your deadline.
Julia Matthews, MSN, MPH
Director, Health Center
Geoff Bartlett, CEM, NHDP-BC
Director of Emergency Management