The University of Delaware announced Friday that it will require all external visitors to UD events to provide proof of vaccination against COVID-19 or a negative PCR test for the virus, starting Sept. 10.
UD had announced in August that all students, staff and visitors would be required to wear masks indoors.
The school has adopted the vaccine/testing measure to protect the UD community against the spread of the virus, a statement said.
The state’s largest university is joining a growing number of institutions doing that. The Grand Opera House announced last week that it would require vaccines or negative tests and masks for staff, performers and audiences at shows on its Copeland stage, baby grand or the Playhouse on Rodney Square, unleashing a torrent of email abuse from those opposed to it. OperaDelaware also announced it would require them. Hospitals require them, too, to visit patients.
UD’s new policy will apply to attendees and participants who are ages 12 and older at UD athletic events, performances and other events that are open to external visitors, either by ticket or by invitation, according to an announcement.
The statement also offered specific definitions about what what the policy means.
“Full vaccination” means that all guests must have received their final COVID-19 vaccine dose at least 14 days in advance of the UD event they are attending, the statement said.
Authentic proof of a negative COVID-19 PCR test will be accepted if the test was taken within 72 hours of the event through a medical or accredited company. At home tests will not be accepted.
Guests will be allowed to present a paper copy of their vaccination card or negative test results, OR show an electronic copy of their vaccination card or negative test results on their smart phones.
Adults will also need to show valid identification matching the vaccination card/test results, the statement said.
In addition, all event attendees and participants — including UD students, faculty and staff — will need to complete the UD Daily Health Check and show the green check display reflecting health clearance for venue/community access.
The university said it will continually evaluate its event attendance policy in consultation with public health guidance.
Betsy Price is a Wilmington freelance writer who has 40 years of experience, including 15 at The News Journal in Delaware.
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