SDSU COVID-19 Weekly Digest
 
 
October 9, 2020 | Vol. 1, No. 9
 
 
Latest Updates and Announcements
 
 
Dear SDSU Community,

Beginning Monday, an additional but limited number of in-person courses will be held. These courses are primarily upper-division or graduate level determined by faculty and academic leaders to be essential to student degree completion, licensure, and career preparation.

The full list of in-person courses can be found on the Registrar’s site.

Reminders: We have three important reminders for our entire campus community:

Mental health and reliance on support services remain important. The pandemic has been overwhelming in unexpected ways. Please rely on the support services SDSU provides. Resources include:
Everyday actions help protect you and others. Public health officials locally, across the state and nation continue to reinforce specific behaviors that will help protect you and others. The best known ways to protect against the spread of COVID-19 or contracting the virus are as follows:
  • Wear a facial covering.

  • Wash your hands regularly.

  • Maintain at least six (6) feet of physical distance between yourself and anyone not living in your household, even when wearing a facial covering.

  • Do not host or attend gatherings that are not in alignment with existing public health orders.

Check your SDSU email account regularly. Email is the primary way that SDSU will share information with you. In addition to the COVID-19 Weekly Digest and regular campus updates, information is regularly shared via email to students, faculty and staff. Students living in on-campus housing and those taking in-person classes should be especially attentive to SDSU email for regular updates about available testing.

SDSU Student Health Services
 
 
SDSU COVID-19 Cases
 
 
There remain no positive COVID-19 cases associated with transmission due to on-campus research or instruction, with no on-campus faculty cases, and a total of 10 staff cases associated with auxiliary or university employees. SDSU has continued to see a robust decline in positive test results over the last five weeks.

On Thursday, Oct. 8, the San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) confirmed additional COVID-19 cases among students who live in on-campus housing and those who are online-only and live throughout San Diego County.
  • Together, 1,089 confirmed cases and 68 probable cases have been reported for a total of 1,157 cases throughout San Diego County. Of the 1,157 cases, 408 have been connected to students living on-campus. Of these 408, more than 98% have completed their required isolation period and are fully recovered.

  • SDSU is requiring that students taking in-person classes on campus get tested no matter where they live. The university currently has no legal authority to mandate that students living off campus without in-person classes get COVID-19 tested but continues to strongly encourage those students to get tested regularly.

  • Free testing for all students is available at Student Health Services and the county-operated Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center site.
 
 
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As a reminder, most U.S. colleges and universities are not reporting positive cases that occur among their off-campus students if they are attending online-only classes. However, in partnership with HHSA, SDSU has opted to identify all off-campus and online-only cases among SDSU students who live in San Diego county for full transparency.

The SDSU's COVID-19 Case Communications Protocol page is updated daily with information about new cases, and the university continues to send campus notices about new cases in compliance with U.S. Department of Education guidelines.
 
 
Boo to the Flu
 
 
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Getting a flu vaccine is more important than ever during 2020-2021 to protect yourself and the people around you from flu. Doing so can also help reduce the strain on those within healthcare systems who are responding to the COVID-19 pandemic.

During the month of October, Student Health Services is offering flu vaccinations at no cost to current students. Students can make an appointment through HealtheConnect and keep an eye out for walk-in clinic times on the Student Health Services website.

Students who are not able to access Student Health Services or who are not living in the San Diego area should reach out to their health care provider to understand where and how they can receive a flu vaccine. Review the step-by-step guide on how to effectively reach out to your healthcare provider.

Champions for Health will provide free flu shot clinics across San Diego County in partnership with the San Diego Health and Human Services Epidemiology and Immunization Services program and United Healthcare. Faculty, staff and students are all eligible.  

For employees currently enrolled in a health plan, you can also access flu shots through your provider or other approved sites, including the following:
For all other plans, please contact the phone number on the back of your medical ID card, or visit the CalPERS Plans and Rates website for a listing of plans and contact information. Faculty, staff, and student employees can also access the Aetna Resources for Living (Employee Assistance Program) for information how to protect against the flu season.
 
 
Public Health Guidance
 
 
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With Halloween forthcoming, both SDSU and the San Diego Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) remind all members of the community that gatherings of any size are not permissible under current public health orders. Individuals should continue to avoid attending and hosting gatherings, and maintain physical distancing.

HHSA encourages that everyone should also avoid in-person costume parties and provides suggestions for alternative ways to safely celebrate Halloween.

For more information about the oncoming COVID-19 pandemic nationally, in California, in San Diego and in Imperial Valley, rely on the following resources:
 
 
Protect Against Cybersecurity Threats
 
 
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The COVID-19 pandemic has presented vulnerabilities to cybersecurity threats, as cyber criminals seek unlawful access to data and funds from both individuals and organizations. To protect themselves and the university, all students, faculty and staff are encouraged to do the following when using Internet-connected devices:
  • Disable features you may not need: Disabling features you do not use can protect your security and privacy.

  • Configure your privacy and security settings: Most devices default to the least secure settings. Be aware and take a moment to configure those settings to your comfort level.

  • Keep software up to date: The best defense against viruses and malware is updating the latest version of your app, web browser, and operating systems. Sign up for automatic updates, if you can, and protect your devices with anti-virus software.

  • Change default settings: Be sure to change the default password and settings for your protection.

  • Double your login protection: Enable multi-factor authentication (MFA) to ensure that the only person who has access to your account is you. Use it for email, banking, social media, and any other service that requires logging in. If MFA is an option, enable it by using a trusted mobile device, such as your smartphone.

  • Lock your device: Numerous reports occur every year of stolen devices from dorm rooms and cafes. It is up to you to keep your devices secure.

Go to the 2020 SDSU Cybersecurity Awareness Month website for further information. In addition, follow SDSU’s Information Technology Security Office on Twitter @SDSUITSO.
 
 
Tips and Reminders
 
 

All students must check their official SDSU email addresses for information and updates.

 
 

This is the 9th week Student Health Service has offered free COVID-19 testing to all enrolled students. San Diego County Health and Human Services Agency (HHSA) also continues to offer free testing for all faculty, staff, and students at the Parma Payne Goodall Alumni Center. The SDSU COVID-19 Surveillance Testing Plan is ongoing with randomized re-testing of students. All students living in on-campus housing and all students taking in-person courses are required to get COVID-19 tested at least every 14 days.

 
 

As a reminder, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported that it is likely that flu viruses, as well as the virus that causes COVID-19, will both spread this fall and winter. All are encouraged to take flu prevention measures.

 
 

Students should continue to rely on virtual support services available, including remote lab support. Resources for employees are available online (SDSU login credentials required).