By JENNA SKARLUPKA & RILEY MATHEWS, NEWS3 Reporters
MACOMB, Illinois (NEWS3) – As the state of Illinois continues its COVID-19 vaccine rollout, Western Illinois University’s Office of Risk Management has provided the campus community with updates on vaccination and COVID-19 protocols.
In a campus-wide email sent on March 10, the office said the McDonough County Health Department and McDonough District Hospital are continuing to vaccinate those eligible under the state guidelines. The office also encouraged WIU students, faculty and staff to continue filling out their daily COVID-19 self-check, which now includes a section on whether or not they have been fully vaccinated against COVID-19.
“We remain optimistic that additional COVID-19 vaccines will be provided to the county in the coming weeks,” the Office of Risk Management said in a released statement.
Illinois is currently in phase 1B+ of its vaccination plan, which includes individuals age 16 and older with disabilities or underlying conditions (only the Pfizer vaccine is currently approved for those 16 and older). A fully vaccinated individual has received either two doses of the Moderna vaccine, two doses of the Pfizer vaccine or one dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, which the Food & Drug Administration recently approved.
In the March 10 email, the Office of Risk Management thanked the campus community for their cooperation thus far and encouraged individuals to continue social distancing, mask wearing and following other university directives.
“While there have been numerous changes surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic, it’s important to continue to be vigilant and follow University COVID-19 protocols and policies,” the Office of Risk Management said in a released statement.
The Office of Risk Management also said the Macomb campus is shifting to the University of Illinois System SHIELD testing program for employees and off-campus students. On-campus students will continue to receive COVID-19 tests under WIU’s BD Veritor method “until further notice.”
Individuals who want new face coverings or bottles of hand sanitizer can collect them at the University Union Service Center on the Macomb campus. They can also find more information about WIU’s COVID-19 protocols at www.wiu.edu/coronavirus and on local vaccinations at getyourcovidshot.com.