Monday, February 22, 2021

Reminder: Campus COVID-19 cleaning practices

In this video, Associate Director of Custodial Services Andy Bruckner explains how the University of Iowa’s dedicated custodial team is helping mitigate the spread of COVID-19 through updated cleaning practices. All cleaning practices align with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. To date, the spread of COVID-19 has not been traced back to any classrooms on campus.

Vaccine update: Four reasons why we need to wear masks after being vaccinated

If you’ve been vaccinated against COVID-19, you might feel like you can do away with the face mask and face shield that have become our constant companions over the past 10 months. However, wearing protective equipment after vaccination is still just as important as ever. Here’s why:

  1. There simply aren’t enough people who are vaccinated yet. While there are several variables that will need to be evaluated before we can relax our safety precautions, the number of vaccinated Americans is currently too low to offer enough protection from the vaccine alone and could take several months. We will watch the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and the Iowa Department of Public Health (IDPH) for further guidance about protective equipment and vaccinations.
  2. We don’t yet know if vaccination stops asymptomatic spread. While clinical trials indicate that COVID-19 vaccines, like Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna, are about 95% effective at preventing symptoms of COVID-19 in the vaccine recipient, we do not yet know how well they will help stop the spread of the virus. Keeping up our safety standards protects ourselves and others until we have more data on the full effectiveness of the vaccine.
  3. We also know that the virus is evolving, and there is some early indication that the current vaccines may not be fully protective for the new variants. This means it is critical that we do everything we can to try to reduce the numbers of COVID cases—both by vaccinating people as quickly as possible and by using the tried-and-true protective measures to reduce the evolution and spread of new variants.
  4. We must continue to role model for our community. It will not be visible from the outside who has and who has not received the vaccine. We must continue to model good safety behaviors, like wearing a mask and keeping our distance, until enough individuals have been vaccinated across the United States and until new infection rates have decreased.

For campus vaccination information and updates, see To learn more about vaccines and vaccine safety, see the University of Iowa Health Care COVID-19 Vaccine Information page.

Campus operations

The university continues to monitor self-reported COVID-19 testing data on campus, while also tracking state, region, and national COVID-19 infection rates.

University of Iowa seven-day rolling average

University of Iowa self-reported COVID-19 testing

These data reflect new cases since Feb. 19, 2021.

The University of Iowa has published an updated snapshot of self-reported positive COVID-19 tests from faculty, staff, and students.

Number of self-reported cases of COVID-19


  • New cases: 6
  • Total cases: 2,997


  • New cases: 1
  • Total cases: 438

These numbers reflect only self-reported positive or presumed positive COVID-19 tests from UI faculty, staff, and students on the academic campus since Aug. 18, 2020. These data will not match data reported by UI Hospitals & Clinics or by the Iowa Department of Public Health for several reasons, including different testing time intervals and geographic scope. Students who also are employees of the university are only reported in the student number to avoid double counting. The UI has more than 30,000 students and nearly 30,000 employees. Many employees continue to work remotely but have self-reported to authorize sick leave.

Number of residence hall students in quarantine: 2*

Number of residence hall students in self-isolation: 2**

*Quarantine: Quarantine is used to keep someone who might have been exposed to COVID-19 away from others.

**Self-isolation: Isolation is used to separate people infected with the virus (those who are symptomatic and those with no symptoms) from people who are not infected.