Use of Facemasks on Campus

Emilio Carranco, M.D., M.S., Director, Student Health Center | April 23, 2020

Email sent to faculty and staff

Faculty and Staff,

While social distancing, hand-washing and staying home if sick remain the most important strategies for slowing the spread of COVID-19, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends using cloth face coverings in public settings where social distancing measures are difficult to maintain.  Based on this CDC recommendation, Texas State University is encouraging faculty, staff and students working on campus whose work makes it difficult to maintain social distancing to use cloth facemasks.  Employees can purchase their own cloth facemask through a variety of online retailers or in the TSUS marketplace, or find many easy do-it-yourself mask-making guides online such as those provided by the CDC at Cloth Face Coverings.  Surgical masks or respirators should be reserved for medical professionals, public safety officials and laboratory environments.

The university has secured approximately 2,000 cloth facemasks for employees who cannot obtain one from other sources, and will provide up to two cloth facemasks upon request.  Facemasks may be picked up at the University Distribution Center located at 305 River Ridge Parkway in San Marcos, Texas or can be delivered by requesting them using the Requesting Catalog Delivery Form.  When using the Requesting Catalog Delivery Form, select “Other” for Item Needed and enter “Facemask” in the next field to identify the item needed.  In the “Number of Cartons Needed” field, enter the names and employee ID numbers of up to 5 employees in the same office.  For those wanting to pick up facemasks, please call the University Distribution Center at 512-245-2294 to get a time for pick up between 8am – 12 pm or 1pm – 5pm. 

Asymptomatic persons infected with COVID-19 can unknowingly spread infection.  Facemasks can help reduce the risk of spreading infection to others.  It is important to review these Facemask Use and Care guidelines to learn how to properly use, store and clean re-usable cloth facemasks.  Improper use of a face mask reduces its safety benefits and increases the risk of exposure.  If deemed appropriate, department supervisors may want to review this information with their employees.