April 21 - Updates on COVID-19
Twisting branches and blossoms in Aldrich Park. Photo by Nedda Bozorgmehri
TODAY'S CAMPUS UPDATES
Data breach reminder
In the wake of a cyberattack data breach that affected the University of California, everyone should enroll in the free Experian ID theft protection service offered by UC. This video explains how to sign up and take other steps to protect yourself. You should also consider freezing your credit reports with all three agencies, which prevents criminals from opening lines of credit in your name. You can easily “unfreeze” your credit report temporarily whenever you legitimately need it accessed in the future.
No new campus cases*
No student residents or on-campus employees tested positive for COVID-19 on Tuesday. For more information, visit the UCI COVID-19 dashboard.
GENERAL COVID-19 NEWS
This section curates noteworthy coronavirus news, trends and opinions. No endorsement by UCI is implied. Note: Some news sites require subscriptions to read articles. The UCI Libraries offer free subscriptions to The New York Times, Wall Street Journal and OC Register for students, faculty and staff.
Pageant of Masters, O.C. museums to reopen this summer
After more than a yearlong shutdown because of the pandemic, several Orange County arts institutions are emerging from quarantine and reopening their doors.
UCSF doctor says COVID booster shots may be unnecessary
According to infectious disease physician Dr. Monica Gandhi, there’s good evidence that booster shots may not be needed six months after initial vaccination, a deadline that is coming up for people inoculated in December. Or, if boosters are needed, the side effects will be less severe, she predicts.
New tactics sought to persuade unvaccinated Americans
Half of American adults have received at least one vaccine shot. Now comes the hard part: tailoring messages and tactics to persuade not only the vaccine hesitant but also the indifferent. One of the most reluctant demographic groups: Generation Z, people born between 1997 and 2012.
U.S. warns against travel to 80% of the world
The State Department urged Americans to reconsider any international travel plans they might have and said it would issue specific warnings not to visit roughly 80% of the world’s countries because of COVID-19 risks.
Experts debate the need to continue outdoor masking
Citing vaccination rates, WHO guidance and the safety of being outside, one infectious disease specialist says masks are no longer necessary outdoors, but another says it’s still too soon to discard the rule.
Correction re ‘0.007% of fully vaccinated Americans got COVID’
A news item in yesterday’s newsletter said none of the 6,000 people (out of 84 million) who got COVID after being fully vaccinated died or got severely ill. The story was later updated and said 396 were hospitalized and 74 died.
HOPE, INSPIRATION, LAUGHTER
Amid the heartbreaking loss of life and economic hardship wrought by the coronavirus, we recognize the need for stories of kindness, hope, courage and humor.
How people in the past imagined the future
Airplanes with swimming pools, space cats, robot disciplinarians and other fascinating forecasts from previous decades.
Vaccine selfies: Being part of a miracle
TarunKumaar Rajasekar, a business administration major and resident advisor in Middle Earth, said he got the vaccine partly “to keep myself and the people around me safe.” But he added, “Thinking about how much the pandemic has affected everyone's life in so many different ways, it is almost a miracle to have a vaccine that can offer some sort of return to normal, so I wanna be a part of that. Also, the vaccine is free and I usually have a hard time passing anything up that’s free.”
After getting the shot, “I was so excited I just went and got a lot of food. So much food that I instantly took a three-hour nap after it,” he said. And more food is on the way: “One thing I look forward to doing now that I'm vaccinated is going home to my parents not worried about possibly affecting them in any way. I’m missing my mom's cooking.”
If you have a shoutout, or if you’d like to share what you’ve been up to during the pandemic, send photos and/or words about your COVID-19 vaccination, activities, workstation, volunteering, etc., to firstname.lastname@example.org or post on social media with the #UCIconnected hashtag.
* Potential workplace exposure: UCI provides this notification of a potential workplace COVID-19 exposure. Employees and subcontractors who were in these locations on the dates listed may have been exposed to the coronavirus. You may be entitled to various benefits under applicable federal and state laws and University-specific policies and agreements. The full notification is available on the UCI Forward site. If you have been identified as a close contact to a COVID-19 case, the UCI Contact Tracing Program will contact you and provide additional direction.