Face Masks – University of Rochester

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The University is requiring surgical, N95, KN95, or KF94 masks (non-cloth masks) to be worn by all students, faculty, staff, and visitors—including those who are fully vaccinated—while indoors on any of the University’s campuses and properties. Cloth masks are acceptable only as a second/outer layer when paired with a surgical, N95, KN95, or KF94 mask. The only exception to this face mask policy is the use of a clear face mask when necessary for communication with individuals who are deaf or hard of hearing.

In line with this requirement, the University is making available free disposable surgical face masks throughout many campus locations.

The Medical Center—including the School of Nursing and School of Medicine & Dentistry—has separate masking policies and guidelines for clinical areas, which will remain in effect and are available on the URMC Intranet site.

As part of the current mandate:

  • Any in-person meetings or group activities in conference rooms or other indoor spaces should be conducted with everyone being masked—regardless of vaccination status.
  • Individuals may remove their masks when working alone in their offices.
  • In the classroom, fully vaccinated instructors need to be masked unless teaching or lecturing at least 6 feet away from students, in which case the mask can be removed; class attendees must remain masked. This 6-foot rule also applies to guest speakers who are on campus speaking to an audience.
  • When eating in Rochester Dining locations or other public or shared spaces on campus, everyone should remain masked up to the point of starting a snack, or meal, remove their face mask to eat, and then re-mask when done.
  • In on-campus student living spaces, students may be unmasked in their room with their roommate(s) or “family unit” (family units are defined in our frequently asked questions). All other times, students should be masked.
  • Outdoors, everyone who is not fully vaccinated should wear a face mask on campus when physical distancing isn’t possible.
  • Face masks continue to be required for everyone on the University shuttles.

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