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University of Minnesota to require vaccines once FDA approved

A student walks on the University of Minnesota campus
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The University of Minnesota announced on Monday that it would be requiring students and faculty to get COVID-19 vaccines once the shot is fully approved by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA).

University President Joan Gabel made the announcement in a letter to students and employees, The Associated Press reports. The decision will need approval from the school’s Board of Regents. Those who do not get vaccinated will be subject to regular COVID-19 tests.

“We understand that this is a challenging decision for our community, but our interests are first and foremost the health of our students, faculty and staff,” Gabel said.

The AP notes that the University of Minnesota has already issued an indoor mask mandate for all five of its campuses across the state.

The university joins numerous others across the U.S. that have issued vaccine and mask mandates for their campuses.

In late July, the University of Michigan announced that it would be requiring all students, faculty and staff to be vaccinated by this upcoming fall semester.

“Widespread vaccination is the primary and most effective tool that will bring the COVID-19 pandemic under control and it is the key to a vibrant and engaging academic year for all of us in the University of Michigan community,” school officials said in a letter.

According to the Johns Hopkins University COVID-19 tracker, around 55 percent of Minnesota’s population is fully vaccinated against COVID-19. Cases and hospitalizations in the state have risen somewhat though deaths have remained relatively low.

Health officials are anticipating that the FDA could approve at least the Pfizer vaccine in a matter of weeks.

Tags COVID-19 vaccine mandate Minnesota Responses to the COVID-19 pandemic
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