Letter: Strongly Encouraging Wearing a Mask Indoors

April 20, 2022

Dear UMB Community, 
Since our last letter, the University of Maryland, Baltimore (UMB) has seen a slight uptick of COVID-19 cases and at least one cluster of infections related to off-campus events where attendees were not wearing masks.
At this time, the University is strongly encouraging you to wear a face covering indoors while in close proximity to others at UMB, and please consider doing the same while in the community. It is your personal responsibility to choose your level of protection in areas where masks are not required.
Please read the letter Taking Precautions Amid Increased COVID-19 Cases for additional steps on how to protect yourself and others.
Medical-grade, KN95, or equivalent masks continue to be required for people 2 years or older in the following locations:
  • Patient care and clinical areas to include patient waiting areas
  • In-person health care simulation labs — face shields/eye protection are not required in health care simulation labs for protection against COVID-19. However, face shields/eye protection may be required to simulate real-world conditions or for other educational purposes. Each school dean or designee will determine what is appropriate for their particular school and programs within that school.
  • UMB public transportation (UMB shuttle or Safe Ride)
On Monday, the federal mask mandate for public transportation was overturned by a federal judge. However, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) continues to recommend wearing masks on public transportation. Therefore, our requirement to wear a mask on UMB public transportation remains in effect.
Shuttle drivers will have masks on hand for those who do not have one.
Events and food service will remain unchanged, as well.
In keeping with current CDC, city, and state guidance, the UMB Public Health team will no longer be conducting contact tracing interviews for all reported positive cases. Those working in direct contact with patient populations, whether at work or for school, can continue to expect an interview.
We will be relying more on members of our community to notify their close contacts, as most of you have already been doing. Please review this CDC information PDF about how to identify and talk with your close contacts, so they can take steps to prevent further spread. If you are uncomfortable revealing your positive status to your contacts, you could notify them by using the anonymous contact service Tell Your Contacts.
Please continue to report your positive COVID-19 cases, symptoms, or close-contact exposures to receive guidance using the COVID-19 Report Form. If you receive an error message that the form is down, please email UMBOccupationalHealth@som.umaryland.edu to notify us.
Stay healthy,
Marianne Cloeren, MD, MPH
Associate Professor of Medicine
University of Maryland School of Medicine
UMB Public Health Officer