All UMass students, faculty and staff will need to get a COVID vaccine booster shot soon, the university system announced Tuesday.
It's a new addition to this fall's vaccination requirement, which left nearly all of the system's more than 90,000 students, faculty and staff vaccinated, the announcement noted.
People with an accepted religious or medical exemption to the vaccine requirement won't need to get the booster shot, either.
"Vaccination is the best defense against COVID-19," President Marty Meehan said in the statement. "The data are clear that vaccination protects us against severe illness and death. I urge everyone to get vaccinated and, as soon as they are eligible, get a booster."
More on COVID in Mass.
The announcement didn't put a deadline on when the members of the community would need to get the booster shot. Staff in Meehan's office were required to get a booster shot reasonably soon after they become eligible -- six months after their second Pfizer or Moderna shot or two months after a Johnson & Johnson shot.
The announcement noted that the UMass Amherst, Dartmouth and Chan Medical School had a similar requirement, and UMass Boston and Lowell issued the requirement for students and were negotiating with their unions to require the same for staff.