KN95 Masks for Faculty, Staff, and Students
From Dr. Jean Morrison, University Provost and Chief Academic Officer
and Derek Howe, Senior Vice President for Operations
We are aware that as we approach the start of the spring semester, some faculty, staff, and students are feeling increasingly anxious about the prospect of returning to campus. While we are confident in the safety protocols that are in place, including a vaccine mandate and twice-weekly testing for all undergraduate students and weekly testing for all other members of the community, we understand and empathize with the anxiety present in our community, particularly for those with young children or immunocompromised members of their households.
Our medical experts have advised that, in addition to our booster mandate and testing, one of the best tools available for maintaining individual health and safety is a well-fitted mask worn consistently and correctly. BU’s facial mask policy remains in place and has never been more important. While a number of types of masks are acceptable – including high quality, multi-layered cloth masks, medical/surgical masks, and respirators – the University has decided to provide a one-month supply of KN95 masks at no cost to BU community members who will be on campus so that those of you who are interested in utilizing this high-quality type of mask will have easy access to one.
Starting next Wednesday, January 19, the University will make available KN95 masks to all faculty, staff, and students. The masks will be distributed to faculty and staff through the on-campus COVID testing locations, and can be picked up at your next regularly-scheduled test. These masks can be safely worn for up to 40 hours or approximately one week as long as they are not visibly soiled and have not lost their shape. We will make available one 5-mask packet per person, which will enable use of a KN95 mask for the next month.
As always, we appreciate your continued patience and understanding as we navigate yet another semester disrupted by the pandemic. We will continue to be in close conversation with our medical experts regarding all of these decisions. Thank you for all that you do and best wishes for a productive and safe semester.