Ohio University announces COVID-19 vaccine requirement


Staff Report



ATHENS, Ohio — Ohio University President Hugh Sherman shared a message with the Ohio University community today announcing required vaccination against COVID-19.

The message read:

If there’s one thing we know to be true, it’s that OHIO Bobcats care deeply for one another. From doctors and nurses volunteering time and talent to provide community access to vaccinations in rural areas to making sure our friends, peers and colleagues are staying engaged during times of isolation, our University community has demonstrated time and again that this is a community of care.

Our commitment is to provide our students with the most normal college experience possible, but the reality is that as a nation, we are not as far as we hoped we would be in battling the pandemic. Public health experts are tracking an increase in cases in Ohio and on our campuses due to the extremely contagious Delta variant, and we need to do everything we can to continue to show our care and respect for one another and do our part to help keep the entire community safe and healthy.

Therefore, after thoughtful consideration, in consultation with public health experts and in agreement with many of our peer institutions across the state, all OHIO students, faculty, and staff at all locations are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by November 15, 2021. For vaccines that require two doses, both doses must be completed by this date. This applies to all employees, including those working remotely and all students except those enrolled exclusively in fully online programs and coursework who will not access University facilities on any campus in person.

It’s important to note, there will be an opportunity to apply for an exemption of the vaccine requirement for medical reasons or for reasons of conscience, including ethical and moral belief or sincerely held religious beliefs.

All students must be vaccinated or granted an exemption in order to participate in any spring semester in-person activities, including face-to-face instruction and residence life, at any location.

Ohio University recognizes the following vaccines under this policy: Pfizer (two dose); Johnson & Johnson/Janssen (one dose); Moderna (two dose); and Vaccines currently approved under a WHO Emergency Use Listing (EUL)

How to Get Vaccinated:

There is no cost for the COVID-19 vaccines, and they are easy to get either by appointment or at a walk-in clinic.

I am grateful for the coordination by our team at the Heritage College of Osteopathic Medicine, the College of Health Sciences and Professions, and our local health system / public health partners to provide vaccine opportunities for our students, faculty, and staff, and the community-at-large across our campuses.

Clinics are available on the Athens campus and many of the regional campuses.

Schedule a vaccine anywhere in Ohio online or by phone (1-833-427-5634).

Additional details about vaccine availability can be found on our Be Safe Bobcats website.

Providing Proof of Vaccination:

Students, faculty, and staff will register proof of vaccination through the COVID-19 Testing Pathway Program.

If you have already selected the Vaccination Pathway and uploaded your vaccine card, thank you. No further action is necessary (unless a booster becomes necessary).

If you are not yet fully vaccinated, you are required to test on the Weekly Testing Pathway until you are fully vaccinated.

If you have already selected the Weekly Testing Pathway, after you have completed your vaccination, you can change your selection to the Vaccination Pathway by using the link provided in your original pathway confirmation email, or by contacting COVIDoperations@ohio.edu for a link to make the change.

COVID Operations will be announcing new incentive programs for members of the University community who complete vaccination prior to the deadline.

The vaccination is our best protection against COVID-19 and will ultimately help end the pandemic. If and when boosters are recommended, the University will update this policy to reflect those recommendations.

Thank you for doing your part to protect our campus community.

Staff Report