Reducing the Risk of COVID-19 Transmission on our Campuses
Emilio Carranco, M.D., M.S., Texas State Chief Medical Officer
Texas State University is ready to have you on our campuses for the fall semester. I want to make you aware of our efforts to reduce the risk of COVID-19 at Texas State. As Bobcats, we all have a role in helping to protect our community.
I strongly encourage you to self-quarantine between now and the start of classes. If you are unable to self-quarantine, I suggest you follow the CDC recommendations for wearing face masks, social distancing, avoiding large social gatherings and hand washing/sanitizing. These prevention strategies will help protect against bringing COVID-19 infection into the university community and reduce the possibility of you missing classes at the start of the semester due to infection.
Self-Assessment and Testing
Daily self-assessment for fever and symptoms of COVID-19 is important. Please have your own thermometer so you can check for fever (≥ 100.4°F) every morning and whenever you feel ill. If you are sick—do not go to class or work. The Student Health Center can provide medical evaluations via telehealth. To schedule an appointment, call 512-245-2161. You can find more information on COVID-19 Reporting and Response Stepsin the Roadmap to Return.
The Student Health Center currently provides COVID-19 PCR testing and evaluation for students, faculty and staff. Additional rapid COVID-19 PCR testing should be available by September for faster diagnosis and contact tracing.
Bobcat Trace Reporting and Contact Tracing
Contact tracing is extremely critical. Close contacts of an infected individual must quarantine and be tested for COVID-19. Identifying close contacts as soon as possible can prevent them from infecting others. The university is requesting that all students, faculty, and staff who test positive for COVID-19 or who are identified as a close contact report in Bobcat Trace. This is a new secure web application for reporting positive COVID-19 cases and will guide our contact tracing efforts at Texas State.
Be Safe On and Off Campus
Texas State has developed a plan for reducing the risk of exposure to COVID-19 on campus, but the risk cannot be completely eliminated. When you are off our campuses, we ask that you continue to be responsible and practice safe and healthy behaviors. You must wear a face covering (cloth with multiple layers) when around others, maintain physical distancing of six feet or more whenever possible, avoid large social gatherings and crowded indoor environments, and wash or sanitize your hands frequently.
I encourage you to visit the Roadmap to Return on the university’s homepage for important instructions about beginning the fall semester and links to helpful resources. We will continue to update the Roadmap throughout the fall semester as necessary.
The health of students, faculty, and staff is our priority. If we all follow the measures that have been implemented at Texas State, we can have a safe and successful fall semester. We look forward to seeing you soon!
Emilio Carranco, M.D., M.S.
Texas State Chief Medical Officer