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Corona Virus (COVID-19) Updated September 9th, 2022

September 9, 2022  
 

COVID MASKING UPDATE:

The BSC Health Committee has decided to change our policy related to masking. Instead of strongly recommending masking we are now reverting to our previous policy before the last wave of COVID and making “masking optional” at Beth Sholom. Based on declining rates of COVID cases and hospitalizations and Montgomery County now moving back to a “low” transmission status we felt comfortable making this change. Additionally, Montgomery Country recently changed their masking recommendations from “Strongly recommending” masking indoors to making it optional everywhere except for health care facilities.

While we will not be continuing to send out e-mails regarding individual COVID cases in the shul we will continue to maintain a COVID dashboard in order to track rates of COVID in the shul and ensure transparency with the community in terms of COVID risk (dashboard link). We request that you continue to notify shul leadership or the Health Committee if you develop COVID and were recently in shul. We will of course continue to keep cases anonymous.

With the now wide availability of the bivalent COVID booster, the Health Committee strongly recommends that all people who are eligible obtain a COVID booster. 


1.  Masks will now be optional for all individuals. We encourage those who would like to or need to wear masks to do so.
 
2. There will continue to be a mask only section in the Epstein Sanctuary (indicated with signs at the end of the row).
 
3. Kiddish will continue to be inside if it is not nice outside.
 
4. A vaccine requirement is still in effect for all individuals who are eligible over 5 years old for both indoors and outdoors. The only exceptions to the vaccine requirement are members with valid medical exemptions from a doctor. All vaccination-eligible guests on Beth Sholom premises are required to be vaccinated unless they have a valid medical exemption from a doctor. It will be the responsibility of the Beth Sholom member hosting to ensure that said guests are aware of the vaccine requirement.

5. Finally, individuals who have COVID symptoms should not attend shul. Symptoms include at least one of the following: Fever of 100.4 degrees Fahrenheit or higher, new onset cough, shortness of breath, or new loss of taste or sense of smell, OR at least two of the following minor symptoms: muscle aches, sore throat, headache, nausea or vomiting, diarrhea, chills, fatigue, and congestion or runny nose. Anyone with one of the major or two of the minor symptoms should refrain from attending events at Beth Sholom and consider undergoing COVID testing.

To return to shul after testing positive for Covid, we follow CDC guidelines that one can return to shul after day 5 if symptoms resolved but must remain masked (no eating) through day 10.

6. It is recommended that those who have one of the minor symptoms listed above in #5 should wear a mask. 

As we progress to the next stages of the pandemic, we are immensely grateful to our Health Committee for the countless hours they have spent weighing important questions to keep our community as safe and healthy as possible.

As always, please feel free to reach out with any questions by writing to health@bethsholom.org

-Beth Sholom Congregation

 

 

Thu, December 8 2022 14 Kislev 5783