New Mask Guidelines at LTCC to Combat Omicron Variant
January 11, 2022
With the Omicron variant rapidly spreading throughout the country and El Dorado County, it’s crucial that LTCC pivots to new campus procedures based on the latest science that will better protect ourselves and others around us.
The Omicron variant is significantly more transmissible than prior variants. The most recent evidence strongly suggests that cloth masks are not adequate protection against it, and that a well-fitting surgical mask, or a KN95 or N95 mask is significantly more effective at limiting the spread of this variant.
While the CDC still states that well-fitted, two-layer cloth masks can be worn and that even a cloth mask is better than no mask at all, the varying degree of quality, type, fit, and effectiveness of cloth masks makes it challenging for college staff to ensure that an appropriate mask is being worn by everyone. They are not standardized, and therefore are not as reliable a protection as surgical, KN95, or N95 masks.
In an effort to better protect our college and limit the spread of this highly contagious variant, LTCC will require the use of surgical, KN95, or N95 masks beginning Friday, January 14 and until further notice. Surgical masks are available for free to anyone who comes to campus who needs one. They are available at the library building main security desk.
Please see LTCC's updated Mask Wearing Guidelines document for more information. These will be posted around campus and on LTCC’s website. We encourage you to make the transition to consistently wearing one of these more effective masks ASAP.
This shift will better protect the health of our students, staff, and faculty, and will help to ensure that LTCC can keep its doors open to serve the community during this variant surge.