As coronavirus cases increase across the state, the University of Maryland is not changing its masking requirements at this time, according to a Friday email from university President Darryll Pines and health center director Spyridon Marinopoulos.
As of now, fully vaccinated individuals are only required to wear masks when riding public transportation, including Shuttle-UM, participating in activities involving K-12 students and obtaining health care services. Unvaccinated individuals must wear masks indoors in public spaces and in crowded spaces outdoors.
This decision follows guidance from the University System of Maryland, county and state health officials and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the email.
The CDC issued guidance this week advising people in areas with a “substantial” or “high transmission” of the virus to wear masks indoors, including those who are fully vaccinated. The agency classified “substantial” transmission as 50 to 99.99 cases per 100,000 people, or a positivity rate between 8 percent and 9.99 percent. “High” transmission is considered 100 or more cases per 100,000 people or a positivity rate of 10 percent or higher.
Prince George’s County is currently experiencing “moderate transmission,” defined as 10 to 49.99 cases per 100,000 people, or a positivity rate between 5 percent and 7.99 percent.
Each transmission level is measured over the course of the past seven days.
Several public school districts in Maryland, including Prince George’s County, have implemented mask mandates for the fall semester, following guidance from the CDC to wear masks in K-12 schools.
If data on campus or in the county changes, or if public health guidance evolves, the university will adjust requirements accordingly, according to the email.
The deadline for vaccination compliance is Monday, according to the email. Those who are not in compliance will face consequences such as canceled class registration for students and progressive discipline — including termination — for employees.