April 15, 2021, Task Force Update

April 15, 2021 | by the Elmhurst University COVID-19 Task Force

Dear Elmhurst University Community:

This is the weekly update from the COVID-19 Task Force.

This week the Task Force must inform the campus that we continue to trend in the wrong direction. Last week we reported that we had 11 positive cases since spring break. This week we are at 18 positive cases since spring break. As a campus community, we must continue to be diligent in our efforts to stop the spread of the virus. We must wear our masks, we need to continue to physically distance, we need to refrain from hosting or attending off-campus gatherings, we all need to get a vaccine. Vaccinated individuals may visit with other vaccinated individuals in a home or private setting without a mask only if everyone is fully vaccinated (two weeks after the second vaccination and two weeks after the one dose Johnson and Johnson Vaccine).

Many of you have asked if we are going to mandate a COVID-19 vaccination for the fall. This topic is being discussed at the Cabinet and Task Force levels. A definitive answer has not been established at this time; however, the University and the Task Force implores faculty, staff, and students to get the vaccine. Reaching “herd immunity” for the fall will allow the campus to be as open as possible and return to some semblance of normal operations. We thank all of you who have been vaccinated, and we continue to encourage all others to get your vaccine sooner rather than later (especially students).

  • Testing
    • April 9, 2021: 127 individuals tested using the saliva test: 1 positive
    • April 11, 2021: 7 individuals tested using the rapid test: 1 positive
    • April 12, 2021: 177 individuals tested using the saliva test: 0 positives
    • April 13, 2021: 27 individuals tested using the PCR test: 0 positives.
    • April 14, 2021: 259 individuals testing using the saliva test and rapid test: 5 positives
    • Elmhurst University has provided close to 9,000 tests for faculty, staff, and students.
    • Elmhurst University has received 263 reported positive cases of the virus from on-campus (57) and off-campus (206) testing since March 2020.
    • To date, 239 students, 18 staff, and 6 faculty have tested positive since March 2020.
    • 18 positive cases have been reported since spring break.
  • Alert Status
    • Elmhurst University remains in the Yellow Alert Level.
    • The current positivity rate for DuPage County is 7.4%. This is an increase from 7.3% last week.
    • The current positivity rate for Elmhurst University is 0.0063. This is up slightly from 0.006 last week.
  • Vaccines
    • 40.1% of the population in DuPage County has received their first vaccine dose. This is up from 36% last week.
    • 25.8% of the population DuPage County has also received its second dose of the vaccine. This is up from 20.7% last week.
    • Vaccine eligibility is currently in Phase 2. Individuals 16+ are eligible for the vaccine statewide (except in Chicago, where eligibility begins April 19th).
    • The COVID-19 Task Force remains encouraged to hear that some of our Bluejays have been fully vaccinated. Congratulations to all our fully vaccinated campus community members.
    • Additional information regarding the vaccine may be found on the University’s COVID-19 Updates page. Additionally, the IDPH COVID-19 Vaccine page provides answers to frequently asked questions regarding the vaccine.
    • The Task Force is requesting that as individuals become fully vaccinated, they submit their name to Phil Riordan and/or Dr. Dean Pribbenow. No further information is needed other than your name. This is not mandatory. We are trying to get some idea if people have been successful in getting the vaccine. Thank you to all who have submitted their names.
  • Today’s Inspirational Quote: “No matter what happens in life, be good to people. Being good to people is a wonderful legacy to leave behind.” —Taylor Swift
  • Today’s Feel-Good Song: What the World Needs Now Is Love, Wynonna Judd

As always, please be safe and healthy. Wear your face mask (double up on face masks for extra protection—the CDC says it can help better protect you). And let’s be kind to each other during these difficult times we live in.

Bluejay Proud,
The COVID-19 Task Force

Connect with #elmhurstu