Message to the Mercer Community from President Underwood

February 25, 2021

Fellow Mercerians,

As we approach the mid-point of the spring semester, I want to commend you on your commitment to the University’s COVID-19 mitigation strategies and protocols. Since classes began in January, we have seen our positivity rates from weekly testing settle in below 2%, which indicates low community transmission among the University population.

A critical component of the University’s comprehensive plan to detect and mitigate the spread of the coronavirus is randomized surveillance testing. Surveillance testing increases the timeliness of outbreak detection and response by rapidly identifying and isolating COVID-19 cases that would otherwise go undetected without testing. I appreciate everyone’s cooperation with our surveillance testing. Your participation makes a difference in keeping our campuses and centers safe and healthy.

I am pleased to inform you that the state has approved Mercer for COVID-19 vaccine distribution when sufficient doses become available, which I expect to be in the next few weeks. Vaccines will be administered by Mercer Medicine in Macon, and we are hoping that the College of Pharmacy in Atlanta will soon be approved as an additional vaccination site. We will share details about how to schedule your vaccine appointment in accordance with state guidelines once we are ready to begin distribution.

Navigating the COVID-19 pandemic has been a marathon for all of us, and we are not at the finish line yet, although it appears to be in sight. I encourage you to maintain vigilance in your masking, social distancing, hand hygiene, symptom monitoring and compliance when you are selected for mandatory surveillance.

Go Bears!