At UAlbany, education a key part of battling COVID-19

ALBANY — University at Albany saw 18 new COVID-19 cases last week,  inching closure to the 100-case threshold that according to state guidelines would trigger a campus-wide “pause” and force classes to shift online.

Off-campus parties have been blamed for the spread of the disease, but strict sanctions against students who knowingly break safety protocols and widespread testing are only part of the solution, experts say.

Education and changing students’ attitudes about the disease is a key component to managing any public health crisis, according to Dolores Cimini, director at UAlbany’s Center for Behavioral Health Promotion and Applied Research.

“In the 1980s, when we did AIDS prevention, what we did was education and we gave people condoms and dental dams. During COVID-19, we doing education and we are giving people masks, sanitizer, and other things to protect themselves,” Cimini said. “We distributed them not only to our long-term students but

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