COVID cases increase: Protocol reminders and holiday safety tips

CSU Mask Vax Report Test graphic

As the weather becomes cooler and activities become more limited to indoors, COVID-19 cases within Larimer County and Colorado State University have begun to rise. For the most updated statistics within the county and within CSU, check:

The Pandemic Preparedness Team and CSU’s Public Health Office have been preparing for and expecting this rise of cases as we head into the winter months. However, everyone still needs to do their part to keep incidences of COVID low.

“To continue with classes and other University activities in-person, it is vital that everyone does their part to get through the rest of the semester,” said Marc Barker, co-chair of the Pandemic Preparedness Team. “While we plan to continue with in-person activities, we want to stress that we are able to do so because of public health measures that are in place – masks, the COVID Reporter, and vaccine and screening mandates.”

Public health requirements

COVID Reporter: Students and faculty are required to report a close exposure, positive test or symptoms at

The pandemic preparedness team is aware that home COVID tests are becoming popular, however:

  • Home tests cannot be used to excuse academic or work absences.
  • Home test positives must be reported to COVID-19 Reporter. The COVID Reporter is an imperative part of the CSU Public Health Team’s effort to contract trace, track exposures and to stop the spread of COVID-19 across campus.
  • Excused absences from work and school must be verified with a nasal swab test regardless of at-home test results.
  • Everything noted above is required regardless of vaccination status.

Current public health guidance is posted at and has been updated for winter.

Saliva screening holiday hours

Saliva screening locations across campus will be closed on Wednesday, Nov. 24, through Friday, Nov. 26. Saliva screening will be optional for students and staff the week of Nov. 22, and weekly saliva screening requirements for unvaccinated individuals will not be enforced. Compliance tracking university wide will resume Monday, Nov. 29. Screening hours will be adjusting through the holiday season; check for updated hours at

Holiday tips and guidelines

As the University heads into the holiday season, be aware of how to keep yourself, your family and others safe heading into the New Year:

  • Protect those not yet eligible for vaccination such as young children by getting yourself and other eligible people around them vaccinated.
  • Wear well-fitting masks over your nose and mouth if you are in public indoor settings if you are not fully vaccinated.
  • Even those who are fully vaccinated should wear a mask in public indoor settings in communities with substantial to high transmission.
  • Outdoor gatherings are safer than indoor gatherings.
  • Avoid crowded, poorly ventilated spaces.
  • If you are sick or have symptoms, do not host or attend a gathering.
  • Get tested if you have symptoms of COVID-19 or have close contact with someone who has COVID-19.

CSU community poster

CSU Community Poster Image

Download the prevention poster, which faculty, staff and students can print on demand by visiting

Finally, continue to wear your mask indoors. This is still the best first line of defense on University grounds against the COVID-19 virus. Following the tips and guidelines listed above through the winter months and through the holiday season will ensure that we make the most of our time together and ensure the safety of our community and each other.