A return focused on health, safety and wellness
As McMaster prepares for the gradual return of in-person learning and working in the coming weeks, the health and wellness of our community remains our focus.
As McMaster prepares for the gradual return of in-person learning and working in the coming weeks, the health and wellness of our community remains our focus. To ensure this transition is as safe as possible and to reduce the spread of COVID-19, McMaster will continue to build upon our safety strategy:
- McMaster’s vaccination mandate requires that all students, staff and faculty members are fully vaccinated or have received an approved exemption on human rights grounds to attend a university site. The current definition of fully vaccinated is two doses of an approved vaccine, as per provincial guidance. Non-McMaster community members are also required to show proof of vaccination.
- We encourage our community to get their third dose as soon as they are able, based on availability and eligibility criteria. Bookings are available in Hamilton through the city’s Public Health website.
- McMaster University is hosting a Public Health walk-in vaccination clinic on campus, at CIBC Hall, 3rd floor of the McMaster University Student Centre (MUSC) on Tuesday, January 18, 2022. View our website for more information, including a Q&A on boosters with Dawn Bowdish, an immunologist and professor in the Faculty of Health Sciences.
Daily Screening with MacCheck:
- MacCheck must be used for daily health screening before coming on site. A green check mark in MacCheck means you are clear to attend a McMaster site that day. MacCheck screening is aligned with the current provincial screening tool.
- Students may be asked at show MacCheck at key locations, including student service areas. More information about where MacCheck clearance may required can be found here. Supervisors are asked to monitor Mosaic to ensure employees are cleared to attend a University property.
Need to self-isolate?
- Follow the provincial government’s current guidelines for isolation. For those fully vaccinated, the current isolation period is five days. View the province’s COVID-19 Self-assessment Tool if you have been exposed or have symptoms of COVID-19 to learn if self-isolation is required. Specific instructions are included in the screening tool if you are required to self-isolate.
- Masks are required in all indoor spaces. The University continues to follow current provincial requirements for masking, which recommends reserving medical grade masks such as N95 masks for specific clinical and health care environments.
- Provincial masking guidance remains unchanged from the fall term. High-quality reusable masks, which meet current standards, were widely distributed to many community members’ last fall.
- A non-medical mask with a minimum of two layers, that is tight fitting, covering mouth, nose and chin is recommended by the provincial government. An individual can wear a mask of their choosing provided it offers a level of protection equal to or greater than these recommendations.
- General information on masking can be found here.
Testing and Reporting:
- In alignment with new provincial guidelines, the Student Symptomatic Testing Centre on campus can provide appointments only for healthcare students, students in clinical placements, or students who identify as First Nations, Inuit or Metis.
- Anyone who has received a positive PCR or rapid test and has been to a McMaster location in the last 14 days must use the self-reporting tool in Mosaic. McMaster’s COVID-19 Case Tracker includes all positive cases reported to the university through Mosaic.
- Back to Mac COVID Training is required for all students, faculty members and staff coming to campus, either for the first time or if you had not been on campus during the pandemic. The training provides education on how to do your part in preventing COVID transmission.
Ventilation and Cleaning
- McMaster takes ventilation seriously and continually looks for ways to update our ventilation plan to adopt industry guidelines and best practices. McMaster is further enhancing our ventilation plan for in-person learning this winter, ensuring all lecture theatres and classrooms on campus meet a minimum six equivalent air changes per hour (eACH), which is considered ideal by the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health’s Healthy Buildings for Health guidelines. Learn more about McMaster’s ventilation plan on our website.
- McMaster’s cleaning plan involves cleaning high touchpoint surfaces on an increased frequency schedule, hand sanitizer and wipes in public areas, disinfecting classrooms nightly and public washrooms twice daily at a minimum. Learn more about McMaster’s cleaning plan our website.
As some of us are returning to campus after a long time away, please familiarize yourself with where the fire extinguishers and pull-stations, fire exits, and first aid kits are in your area. Health and safety inspections should be completed before returning to work areas, if not completed already.
Please visit the Back to Mac website for more information about health and safety measures on campus, including vaccination, testing, reporting, cleaning, ventilation, masking and screening.