The temporary indoor masking mandate at the University of Missouri System will expire after October 15, starting Saturday, following the decline in the number of COVID-19 cases this semester.
However, the university will still recommend individuals to wear masks in indoor spaces, particularly if maintaining social distancing is not possible.
In a statement issued by the Office of the President, the university said that it expects everyone to remain vigilant and protect themselves and others from COVID-19, Erudera.com reports.
“With this change, MU’s mask guidance comes into alignment with the latest Boone County public health advisory and CDC guidance, which both include recommendations for indoor masking. University facilities and operations in other parts of the state will follow local public health guidance,” the statement reads.
Units across campus where the requirements might remain in place include:
- MU Health Care
- The School of Medicine
- Certain facilities in the College of Veterinary Medicine
Furthermore, the university advised students to stay home if they are sick, perform COVID-19 tests if they have any symptoms related to the virus as well as follow the quarantine guidance.
“Following these practices will continue to assist us in managing the situation, which allows in-person learning, work and other activities to continue,” the university noted.
All state campuses are adhering to the mask policy, including Kansas City and St. Louis having mask mandates in place, whereas Boone and Phelps Counties recommending indoor masks.
At the University of Missouri Kansas City (UMKC), masks are obligatory indoors and outdoors for individuals who are not vaccinated against COVID-19. UMKC offers free COVID-19 testing to all students, staff, and faculty.
Meanwhile, the University of Missouri-St. Louis requires students, staff, faculty, and visitors at the age five and older, regardless of their vaccination status, to wear masks when entering campus, effective as of July 26, 2021.
“Additionally, face coverings are required when utilizing campus shuttles. Wearing face masks outdoors, especially in group settings, continues to be strongly encouraged,” the University of Missouri-St. Louis pointed out.
A total of 690,432 confirmed cases and 11,821 deaths were recorded in Missouri since the COVID-19 pandemic erupted.
Universities in the United States and across the world, continue to call on students to schedule appointments and get vaccinated against COVID-19. More than 800 universities across the United States have already introduced COVID-19 vaccine mandates, including the University of Hawaii, which most recently announced that the COVID-19 vaccine will be mandatory as of January 3, 2022.