The decision is a response to the rapid spread of the omicron variant.
The California State University system said Wednesday that it will require all faculty, staff and students using the system’s facilities and programs to get a booster shot to ensure they are fully immunized against COVID-19.
Previously, the 23-campus system required this same group of people to get the Pzifer, Moderna or J&J vaccine before the start of the fall semester, a measure that met with high compliance.
Wednesday’s announcement is related to the rapid spread of the omicron variant of COVID-19, which is expected to increase throughout California shortly after the New Year holidays, placing a huge burden on many hospitals.
“Vaccination, including a booster dose when eligible, remains our most effective strategy against infection and severe disease,” CSU Chancellor Joseph I. Castro said in a statement.
The decision will apply to virtually all of the nearly 50,000 students who collectively attend San Diego State University and Cal State San Marcos.
The CSU – which has 477,000 students and 56,000 teachers and employees across the system – said in a statement Wednesday that “the new requirement requires that reinforcements be received before February 28, 2022 or six months after the person received the last dose of the original vaccine, whichever is later.
“However, individual campuses may set an earlier compliance date for students and unrepresented employees based on local circumstances.”
SDSU said in a statement to its community that “all students, faculty and staff who may receive the COVID-19 booster must have their booster on file at HealtheConnect by Tuesday, January 18, 2022 to be considered fully vaccinated. ”
The news comes a day after the University of California announced that students and staff in the 10 campus system should receive the booster shot early next year.
Seven of UC’s nine college campuses, including San Diego, said they would temporarily delay online classes for part of January to help prevent the expected rise in omicron infections.