Campus Update — February 15

Augustana University is closely monitoring the evolving COVID-19 situation. Here are the latest things to know:

Global Outlook

National Outlook

  • As of 12:26 p.m. on Sunday, February 14, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has reported 27,417,468 positive cases of the novel coronavirus and 482,536 deaths.
  • According to the CDC, 70,057,800 doses of COVID-19 vaccine have been delivered, and 52,884,356 have been adminisered throughout the U.S. Of the vaccines administered, the CDC reports that 38,292,270 people have recieved one or more doses, and 14,077,440 people have recieved two doses. 
  • On Wednesday, December 2, the CDC provided new shortened quarantine guidance as an acceptable alternative to the quarantine period of 14 days.
  • Effective January 26, the CDC issued an order requiring all airline passengers to the U.S. ages two years and older must provide either a negative COVID-19 viral test taken within three calendar days of travel or provide a positive test result and documentation from a licensed health care provider or public health official of having recovered from COVID-19 in the 90 days preceding travel. Passengers must also attest, under penalty of law, to having received a negative qualifying test result or to recovery from COVID-19 and medical clearance to travel. 

State Outlook

  • As of 10:34 a.m. on Monday, February 15, the South Dakota Department of Health (SD-DOH) has confirmed 110,376 total (confirmed and probable) positive cases of COVID-19, including the 61 cases that are new (confirmed and probable), and 1,844 deaths. There are 2,092 active cases in the state, including 86 current hospitalizations. A total of 106,440 people have recovered from COVID-19 in the state.
  • According to the CDC, 182,025 doses of the COVID-19 vaccine have been delivered to South Dakota, and 160,223 vaccinations have been administered as of Sunday, February 14. Of the vaccinations administered in the state, the CDC reports that 109,875 people have received one or more doses, and 50,247 have received two doses. 
  • South Dakota's allocation of the COVID-19 vaccine has increased to 13,550 doses each week, an increase from 12,800. As of February 14, South Dakota will be vaccinating priority groups in Phase 1D; those who are 70 years and over (the age will be lowered in five year increments), high risk patients (dialysis, post-transplant, active cancert), high risk residents in congregate settings, residents in licensed independent living facilities and group homes. Read more about "Vaccine Priority Groups" in the state.
  • The federal government has begun supplying South Dakota retailers with a limited amount of the COVID-19 vaccine, which include some Walmart, Hy-Vee and Lewis Drug stores and pharmacies supplied by Cardinal Health.
  • Read more about the vaccine on the SD-DOH website and the CDC website.

City Outlook

  • The city has a Sioux Falls COVID-19 Dashboard that provides information and resources about the coronavirus testing, case data and the response in Lincoln and Minnehaha Counties. As of 1:10 p.m. on Sunday, February 14, Lincoln and Minnehaha Counties reported a total of 35,093 total (confirmed and probable) cases of the novel coronavirus, including 24 cases that are new, and 401 deaths. There are 608 active cases in both counties, including 24 current hospitalizations. A total of 34,084 people have recovered throughout the two counties.
  • Other updates about City of Sioux Falls services and operations are available at siouxfalls.org/covid19.

Campus Outlook

  • As of Monday, February 15, Augustana University has received a total of 372 reports of positive COVID-19 from the campus community since receiving its first positive case report on April 23, 2020. Of those cases, one remains active and 371 people have recovered.
  • Augustana students, faculty and staff who receive a positive COVID-19 test are asked to remain home until they have fully recovered and notify the COVID-19 Response Team at goodhealth@augie.edu. The AU community is also asked to report dates of their COVID-19 vaccinations at my.augie.edu (login required). By reporting vaccinations, Augustana will be better able to monitor and evaluate COVID-19 protocols in place, as well as identify the employees and students who are eligible for upcoming South Dakota vaccination groups. Despite vaccinations, everyone on campus must continue to follow all Viking Flex Plan protocols, including the mask policy.
  • For daily updates on positive COVID-19 cases reported to AU, please visit the my.augie.edu portal.
  • A more comprehensive look at COVID-19 cases within K-12 schools, as well as colleges, universities and technical schools in South Dakota can be found on the SD-DOH website, updated weekly on Mondays.

As we continue to implement the Viking Flex Plan and welcome students and staff on campus, we fully anticipate receiving reports of positive cases. In order to deal with the anticipated increase of positive cases reported and to preserve the confidentiality and privacy of all involved — Augustana will notify the entire campus community of individual positive COVID-19 cases only when a particular case or set of cases poses a greater risk to the community that cannot be identified through contact tracing. Those in our campus community who are known to have met the exposure criteria determined by the CDC will be notified. For a better understanding, please view COVID-19 Basics #ForAU.

If and when an individual reports testing positive for COVID-19, we will continue to utilize contact tracing, identifying and contacting anyone who may have been in contact with the individual. Augustana’s Employee Health Educator, Campus Clinic staff and others will stay in touch with these individuals to offer any support they may need. More resources regarding health and safety can be found at augie.edu/VikingFlex or within our Viking Flex Plan Frequently Asked Questions.