University of Alabama to Drop Mask Mandate for Fully Vaccinated

The University of Alabama announced that starting November 5, those on campus who are fully vaccinated will not be required to wear face coverings in most on-campus facilities.

This is in accordance with UA System’s announcement earlier this month following Executive Order 14042, which required all UA campuses to ensure employees, including student employees, are fully vaccinated before December 8 barring an approved medical, disability or religious exemption.

In a Friday letter to people on campus, The University of Alabama outlined that in that same federally-enforced guideline, masks should become voluntary for certain populations.

“In areas of low or moderate community transmission, fully vaccinated people do not need to wear a mask,” the Order stated. “Fully vaccinated individuals do not need to physically distance regardless of the level of transmission in the area. Individuals who are not fully vaccinated must wear a mask indoors and in certain outdoor settings.”

As of publishing, Tuscaloosa County is an area of moderate community transmission, with transmission rates trending downward.

As of November 5, masks will only be required:

  • For unvaccinated individuals indoors, and in crowded outdoor settings or during outdoor activities that involve sustained close contact with others who are unvaccinated
  • For all individuals in patient clinical-care settings, including the University Medical Center, the Student Health Center, the Capstone Village assisted living and specialty care units, Brewer-Porch Children’s Center, and the Working on Womanhood program
  • For all individuals on Crimson Ride buses

Unvaccinated people will not be required to wear masks:

  • When eating or drinking while maintaining appropriate distancing
  • When alone in an office with floor-to-ceiling walls and a closed door
  • While actively exercising
  • When in residence hall rooms

The University of Alabama asked individuals who are not fully vaccinated to maintain social distancing whenever possible. Anyone who is fully vaccinated and still wishes to wear a mask can do so, even when not required.

These policies are subject to be updated in compliance with any changes to federal guidance, or as needed should Tuscaloosa County see a substantial rise in community transmission rates.

Answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions

Vaccinations for COVID-19 began being administered in the U.S. on Dec. 14, 2020. The quick rollout came a little more than a year after the virus was first identified in November 2019. The impressive speed with which vaccines were developed has also left a lot of people with a lot of questions. The questions range from the practical—how will I get vaccinated?—to the scientific—how do these vaccines even work?

Keep reading to discover answers to 25 common COVID-19 vaccine questions.

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