COVID-19 Information

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All  students who will be on campus or engage in any level of in-person instruction or activity will be required to submit records of their COVID-19 vaccination through the College's health records management system.

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Upload proof of your vaccination to the Mercy student health portal

  1. Once you log in to the system find the COVID-19 Vaccine Intake Questionnaire 
  2. Submit your records (name of vaccine and date of doses) 

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Exemptions, Accommodations & Waivers

Students may seek a medical or religious exemption, and reasonable accommodations will be provided in accordance with College Policy. 

Fully online students taking 100% of their courses online and who do not plan to come to campus or participate in any on or off-campus College sponsored event for any purpose do not need to apply for a waiver. 

Please contact the Office of ACCESSibility (accessibility@mercy.edu / (914) 674-7764) to lean more regarding applying for an exemption, accommodation or waiver.

Mask Policy

MASK POLICY

Masks are required in the following circumstances:

  • Any employee, student, contractor or vendor who has received an approved exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine and the booster if eligible, is required to wear masks while indoors at all times except in private offices. 
  • Faculty, staff and students in certain programs, such as in the health sciences, may be required to wear masks at the discretion of the program and faculty where health and safety dictates, or may be required at an off-campus facility. 
  • Anyone who enters the Student Health Office must wear a mask.  
  • Anyone who is required pursuant to current guidelines relating to those who tested positive for, or have been exposed to, COVID-19 must wear a mask pursuant to those guidelines.
  • The College strongly recommends that in addition to the above circumstances, community members wear masks when in large crowds, particularly when indoors, and when they are not feeling well.

Learn more about the latest guidance on mask effectiveness. This indicates that certain types of masks (such as well-fitting disposable surgical masks, N95s, and KN95s) are more effective than others. 

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FAQs

Q: Do students need to be vaccinated for COVID-19 to attend in-person classes?
A: Yes. Per the College’s vaccination policy, all students who will be on campus or engage in any level of in-person instruction or activity for the fall 2023 term will be required to submit records of their COVID vaccination and booster dates, when applicable, through the College's health records management system

Vaccines: 

  • Mercy College students who plan to attend classes in-person at any of Mercy’s campuses are required to submit proof of their fully vaccinated status by uploading the information online prior to registering for classes. Fully vaccinated means two weeks after the second dose of the Moderna Pfizer, or Novavax vaccine, or single dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.    

  • Fully online students taking 100% of their courses online and who do not plan to come to campus or participate in any on or off-campus College sponsored events may obtain a waiver.   

Boosters: 

All Mercy College students who reside in on-campus housing, participate in Mercy College athletics or are in clinical or experiential programs are required to show proof of the COVID-19 booster. Individuals are eligible to receive the booster:   

  • 2 months after receiving the J&J vaccine 
  • 5 months after receiving the second Pfizer or Moderna dose 

Booster appointments are available every day at public sites, including the Westchester County Center and sites across New York City and at many pharmacies. The College also has limited supplies of booster vaccines. Please stop into the Health Office. 

Q: How do I upload my COVID-19 vaccination and booster information?
A:  Please submit your vaccination and booster information through our HIPAA compliant portal here. Those who previously submitted the dates of their initial doses only need to submit the date and proof of their booster dose.

  • Go to “My Forms”
  • Click on “COVID-19 Vaccine Intake Questionnaire” link.
  • Follow the instructions to upload your dates and an image of your vaccine card.

Q: Must I be vaccinated for COVID-19 if I am taking only online courses?
A: Fully online students taking 100% of their courses online and who do not plan to come to campus or participate in any on or off-campus College sponsored event for any purpose may obtain a waiver. They may not come inside any of Mercy’s campuses or facilities, however, for any purpose.

Q: Do faculty and staff need to be vaccinated and boosted for COVID-19 to work on campus?
A:
Yes, faculty and staff who will be on campus are required to be fully vaccinated and boosted and should submit proof their vaccination and booster or request an exemption. Documentation can be uploaded through the College’s health records management system:  https://mercy.studenthealthportal.com/Forms.   

Fully vaccinated means two weeks after the second dose of the Moderna Pfizer, or Novavax vaccine, or single dose of the Johnson and Johnson vaccine.  

In addition, proof of the booster is required for any employee who is eligible, which means:  

  • 2 months after receiving the J&J vaccine 
  • 5 months after receiving the second Pfizer or Moderna dose 
  • Those who have had a recent COVID infection are eligible to receive a booster shot as long as you have completed your isolation period, fully recovered from your illness and have completed your primary vaccination series.  

  • For those who are not currently eligible, they must obtain the booster within one month of when they do become eligible. 

  • Q: How can I learn more about vaccine exemptions and medical or religious accommodations? 

  • A: Students and employees may seek a medical or religious exemption from the vaccination.  Reasonable accommodations will be provided in accordance with College Policy. Students should contact the Office of ACCESSibility (accessibility@mercy.edu / (914) 674-7764) and employees should contact the Office of Human Resources, HR@mercy.edu to learn more regarding applying for an exemption from the vaccine or accommodation . 

     

    Note that while students and employees can seek an exemption from the vaccine and booster, some off-campus clinical and experiential sites may not allow for exemptions. 

Q: Are masks still required on campus?
A: Masks are required in the following circumstances:

  • Any employee, student, contractor or vendor who has received an approved exemption from the COVID-19 vaccine and the booster if eligible, is required to wear masks while indoors at all times except in private offices. 

  • Faculty, staff and students in certain programs, such as in the health sciences, may be required to wear masks at the discretion of the program and faculty where health and safety dictates, or may be required at an off-campus facility. 

  • Anyone who enters the Student Health Office must wear a mask.  

  • Anyone who is required pursuant to current guidelines relating to those who tested positive for, or have been exposed to, COVID-19 must wear a mask pursuant to those guidelines.

  • The College strongly recommends that in addition to the above circumstances, community members wear masks when in large crowds, particularly when indoors, and when they are not feeling well.

Q: What face coverings are acceptable?
A: Acceptable face coverings include: Mercy-issued cloth face coverings or other cloth face coverings (e.g., homemade sewn, quick cut), surgical masks, N95 respirators, and face shields. Bandanas, neck gaiters or fleeces and valve masks are not considered acceptable face coverings. Individuals with disabilities may request an accommodation to the face mask requirement. Learn more on the
 latest guidance on mask effectiveness. This indicates that certain types of masks (such as well-fitting disposable surgical masks, N95s, and KN95s) are more effective than others. 

Q: Do I need to complete the health screening on the Mavericks Safe App?  
A: No, currently employees nor students are required to complete the daily health screening, though the College reserves the right to implement this screening in the event that there is an increase in COVID cases and/or there is a local, state or federal mandate to require health screening.  

Q: Does Mercy offer COVID-19 testing ?  
A: Yes, testing is available at the College’s Health Office for individuals who may have been exposed to COVID-19, or who have symptoms of COVID-19. At-home tests are also available at all Mercy campuses.

Q: Will Mercy College communicate about future confirmed cases of coronavirus?
A: No. Mercy College and the Westchester County and New York City Departments of Health no longer conduct formal contact tracing. Anyone who tests positive is instructed to directly notify their close contacts. The Student Health Office will notify students and faculty via email when they learn of a positive case in the classroom.

Q: What do you do if you test positive for COVID-19?
A:
Vaccinated and unvaccinated individuals who test positive should stay off campus and follow these guidelines:

  • Students: please notify the Student Health Office at healthoffice@mercy.edu

  • Faculty or staff members: please contact your supervisor or Program Director who will notify Human Resources. You can also report through healthalert@mercy.edu.

  • Stay home for 5 days and isolate from others in your home. Most people with COVID-19 have mild illness and can recover at home without medical care. Do not leave your home, except to get medical care. Do not visit public areas and do not go to places where you are unable to wear a mask.

  • Take care of yourself. Get rest and stay hydrated. Take over-the-counter medicines, such as acetaminophen, to help you feel better.

  • Stay in touch with your doctor. Call before you get medical care. Be sure to get care if you have trouble breathing, or have any other emergency warning signs, or if you think it is an emergency.

  • Do not travel and avoid public transportation, ride-sharing, or taxis if possible. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention website provides helpful information on facts and guidance about exposure. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/your-health/if-you-were-exposed.html 

Q: If I am a close contact to someone with COVID-19, do I need to quarantine?  
A: No, regardless of your vaccination status you do not need to quarantine.   

  • You need to wear a mask for 10 days from the exposure and you should test on day 5 with the day of the exposure as day 0.  Test immediately if you develop symptoms regardless of the timing.  Please make sure to monitor your symptoms as well for up to 14 days from the exposure.     

  • You are not required to submit a negative test result to the college.

  • You can go to your office and attend class.  

More information from the CDC about this protocol can be found here.   

Q: How should I protect myself?
A: The CDC recommends taking every day preventative actions to help stop the spread of germs including:

  • Avoid close contact with people who are sick
  • Avoid touching your eyes, nose, and mouth
  • Stay home when you are sick
  • Cover your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throw the tissue in the trash.
  • Clean and disinfect frequently touched objects and surfaces using a regular household cleaning spray or wipe.
  • Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds, especially after going to the bathroom; before eating; and after blowing your nose, coughing, or sneezing.
    • If soap and water are not readily available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol. Always wash hands with soap and water if hands are visibly dirty. For information about handwashing, see CDC’s Handwashing website.

Q: What do I do if I feel sick?
A: Mercy students should contact the Health Office on the Dobbs Ferry Campus at (914) 674-7255. Faculty and staff should contact their primary healthcare provider.

Q: What if I am experiencing increased anxiety or stress related to concerns about COVID-19?
A: The following resources are available:

  • Mercy has partnered with BetterMynd to provide free virtual mental health services. To register for services go to bettermynd.com. To schedule an on-campus appointment, please email CounselingCenter@mercy.edu. For more information, visit the Counseling Center webpage here.
  • Faculty and Staff have access to the Employee Assistance Program (EAP) is a resource available to all employees, providing no-cost counseling service to help address stress and other personal issues you and your family may face. The EAP can be reached 24 hours a day and 7 days a week at 800-327-1850 or https://www.guidanceresources.com.

Q: If I am feeling sick, do I need to take a sick day?
A: As always, employees are encouraged to use sick leave when feeling sick. In some cases, individuals may qualify for NYS Quarantine Leave. For more information about updated College leave policies, click here.

Q: Are there any limitations for in-person events and gatherings?
A:
Currently there are no limitations, however the College reserves the right to limit what events and gatherings will take place on campus, and off-campus at College-related events, as well as numbers permitted in any particular gathering, should there be a rise in COVID rates.

Q: How often will classrooms be cleaned?
A: Our cleaning providers will disinfect and detail classrooms daily. For additional cleaning, materials will be available for faculty, staff, and students who wish to wipe down their individual tables, chairs, and computer equipment as an additional precaution.

Q: Will Mercy be doing increased cleaning of high-touch areas?
A: Mercy has implemented protocols to ensure that high touch areas are cleaned appropriately with increased frequency. This includes doorknobs, light switches, elevator buttons, and other frequently touched items. All Mercy shuttles will be wiped down after every trip and receive enhanced cleaning at the end of each day.

Q: Will Mercy provide cleaning supplies for individuals to clean their own spaces?
A: Yes, the College understands that many people will be more comfortable cleaning their workstations themselves prior to use and will be making the proper cleaning supplies available.

Q: Are the residence halls open?
A: Yes, Mercy’s residence halls are open. For general housing questions or concerns, please email residentiallife@mercy.edu. For questions about fall registration, please contact your PACT mentor or pact@mercy.edu.

Q: What is Mercy doing to ensure its facilities are safe, and receiving the proper cleaning and disinfection protocol?
A: Currently only those who reside in the dorms are permitted inside the dorms. Further, in accordance with guidance provided by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the Mercy College Facilities and Operations Team has hired additional personnel to provide increased frequency of cleaning on high-contact surfaces including but not limited to doorknobs, light switches, countertops, elevator buttons, computer and podium keyboards, and vending machines with an enhanced viral disinfectant.

 

Q. Are Guests permitted in the Residence Hall?

A: Yes, however daily guests must show proof of fully vaccination and overnight guests must show proof of the booster as well.  

Q: Are in-person events and gatherings permitted? 
A: Currently, there are no COVID-related restrictions in place for on-campus events, gatherings and meetings for Mercy and non-Mercy related purposes; however, the College will monitor trends and uptick in COVID cases and will amend this policy if needed.

The College reserves the right to limit what events and gatherings will take place on campus, and off-campus at College-related events, as well as numbers permitted in any particular gathering. The College’s policy will continue to adhere to any local, state and federal COVID-19 laws/ordinances, including strict adherence to guidelines relating to NYC indoor dining requirements. 

Q: Are visitors permitted on campus? 

A: Yes. Currently there are no restrictions for individuals who are invited to campus to enter College facilities, except in the following circumstances: 

  • Guests to Residence Halls:  
  • • All invited guests who are visiting any Mercy College residence hall are required to show proof of full COVID-19 vaccination. 
  • • Guests who will be staying overnight in any of the College’s residence halls shall be required to provide proof of full vaccination and a booster shot, if eligible. 
  • Alumni Restrictions:
  • Mercy College alumni who regularly use Mercy College facilities, including but not limited to the gym and libraries, must provide proof of full vaccination and booster if eligible. To do so, they must apply for an alumni card by submitting proof of the COVID-19 vaccination and booster online.  Alumni can contact the Office of Alumni Relations at alumni@mercy.edu or 914-674-7759 if they have any questions.

Q: Do all visitors to Campus need to be vaccinated?  

A: Contractors, vendors, residential hall guests and alumni must adhere to the following:  

Contractors and Vendors: All Mercy College contractors and vendors who regularly appear on campus are required to provide proof of full COVID-19 vaccination, including the booster, if eligible to their employer before coming to Mercy College campuses. Those individuals, like Mercy employees, are entitled to request an exemption with their employer. 

Residential Hall Guests: All guests to residential halls will be required to provide proof of the COVID-19 vaccine prior to entering.  All overnight guests to residential halls are required to show proof of the COVID_19 vaccine and the COVID-19 booster (if eligible). 

Mercy College Alumni: All Mercy College alumni who regularly use campus facilities, including but not limited to the gym and libraries, shall be required to provide proof of vaccination before gaining access to Mercy’s campuses.  They must obtain pre-approval and an identification card through the Office of Alumni Relations, which will allow them access to Mercy’s campuses. 

Q: Do attendees at Mercy College organized events need to show proof of vaccination? 

A: No. Proof of COVID-19 vaccination and masks are not required, however, if the COVID-19 rates in our region shift (i.e., levels move from low to medium or higher under CDC guidelines), the College reserves the right to change policy and require proof of COVID-19 vaccination and masks.

Q: Is Mercy permitting outside organizations to use space on its Campuses? 

A: Yes. Currently, there are no COVID-related restrictions in place for on-campus events, gatherings and meetings for Mercy and non-Mercy related purposes; however, the College will monitor trends and uptick in COVID cases and will amend this policy if needed.  

Q: Are there requirements for Mercy events held off-campus? 

A: Currently, there are no COVID-related restrictions in place for on-campus events, gatherings and meetings for Mercy and non-Mercy related purposes; however, the College will monitor trends and uptick in COVID cases and will amend this policy if needed. 

Q: Will Mercy be conducting a review of the HVAC systems to ensure proper ventilation?
A: Yes, Mercy is following all CDC recommended guidelines that pertain to HVAC and airflow operations. Heating, ventilation and cooling systems are being reviewed and enhanced to increase outdoor air ventilation where possible. Filtration will be improved to MERV-13 recommended standards wherever possible, and we have established longer run times, and increased sanitization of components.

Q: What is the plan for ventilation and fresh air at the Manhattan and Bronx Campuses where windows do not open?
A:  The Manhattan and Bronx Campuses utilize a closed HVAC system where fresh air is introduced to the building through the system, which is designed to work in environments where windows do not open.  The systems include MERV-13 filters, and make-up fresh air and exhaust components.

Q: Are HVAC filters in offices being changed at recommended frequencies and sanitized?
A: Yes, Mercy is following the recommendation from the CDC to increase filtration and disinfection of all filter components and has updated HVAC filters to the MERV-13 filter as suggested wherever possible.

Q: Can I visit campus?
A: Yes, we will be hosting tours in groups of up to 10 individuals. Please contact admissions at admissions@mercy.edu. We also have a Virtual Tour you can check out.

Q: Can I talk to someone if I have questions or need help?
A: Yes, that is what we are here for!  Please contact your admission counselor as needed. Here are a couple of other ways to contact us:

Q: I am an international student. Who can I contact if I have questions?
A: International students who have questions can contact The Office of International Student Services: Valerie Monaco, vmonaco@mercy.edu or Bogdana Vladescu, bvladescu@mercy.edu.

Q: What are the symptoms of COVID-19? (source: World Health Organization, https://www.who.int/news-room/q-a-detail/q-a-coronaviruses)
A: The most common symptoms of COVID-19 are fever, tiredness, and dry cough. Some patients may have aches and pains, nasal congestion, runny nose, sore throat or diarrhea. These symptoms are usually mild and begin gradually. Some people become infected but don’t develop any symptoms and don't feel unwell. Most people (about 80%) recover from the disease without needing special treatment. Around 1 out of every 6 people who gets COVID-19 becomes seriously ill and develops difficulty breathing. Older people, and those with underlying medical problems like high blood pressure, heart problems or diabetes, are more likely to develop serious illness. About 2% of people with the disease have died. People with fever, cough and difficulty breathing should seek medical attention.

Q: How does COVID-19 spread?
A: COVID-19 is spread in three main ways:

  • Breathing in air when close to an infected person who is exhaling small droplets and particles that contain the virus.
  • Having these small droplets and particles that contain virus land on the eyes, nose, or mouth, especially through splashes and sprays like a cough or sneeze.
  • Touching eyes, nose, or mouth with hands that have the virus on them.

Q: Is Mercy working with the local health authorities to receive the most recent updates?
A: Mercy College is closely monitoring the outbreak of the coronavirus (COVID-19) and our staff is consulting with public health, and state and county officials.

Q: Who should I contact if I have a coronavirus related question or would like to provide information that might be helpful to the College?
A: The College has created a dedicated email address HealthAlert@mercy.edu for coronavirus related questions and to provide information that might be useful to the College.

Q: Where should I get my information about the virus?
A: Public health officials are concerned about misinformation about this outbreak. If you have a question about coronavirus, please visit the websites of reputable sources including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, state and local health agencies and the World Health Organization for the most up-to-date information about the virus and its spread.  Additionally, the New York Department of Health has a hotline 1-888-364-3065 dedicated to the coronavirus.

In addition, the College has created a dedicated webpage www.mercy.edu/coronavirus on the Mercy website that includes safety recommendations and preventative measures on staying healthy and Frequently Asked Questions including how Mercy is responding to this situation.