Robbins: Majority of University employees are fully vaccinated against COVID-19

Robbins: Majority of University employees are fully vaccinated against COVID-19

By Pila MartinezUniversity Communications
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President Robert C. Robbins has called on University employees to verify that they are fully vaccinated in order to meet a federal requirement.
President Robert C. Robbins has called on University employees to verify that they are fully vaccinated in order to meet a federal requirement.

More than 75% of University employees, including student workers and graduate assistants/associates, have had their COVID-19 vaccination verified, President Robert C. Robbins said during a briefing on Monday.

About a month ago, Robbins called on University employees to upload their vaccination documentation or request an accommodation in order to comply with President Joe Biden's Sept. 9 executive order. That order requires institutions that contract with the federal government, including the University of Arizona, to ensure their employees are fully vaccinated for COVID-19, in alignment with the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force's guidance. 

Under the federal requirement, the deadline for University employees to show that they are fully vaccinated or to be granted a religious or disability/medical accommodation, is Jan. 18, an extension of the original Dec. 8 deadline.

Employees can be vaccinated at Campus Health or can use Vaccine Finder to find a nearby location. After completing the series of vaccination shots, employees can upload their vaccination documentation using the University's HIPAA-compliant system, which is secure and maintains privacy.

In response to feedback from employees and to make it easier for them to comply, the University created two additional ways to verify vaccination without having to upload their documentation.

If they were vaccinated in Arizona, employees can ask to have their vaccination verified through the Arizona State Immunization Information System. They also can show proof of vaccination in person at the Student Union Memorial Center (Tucson room, third level) Monday through Friday between the hours of 7:30 a.m. and 3 p.m. (Note: This location is closed daily from noon to 12:45 p.m.)

"We'll continue our efforts to educate and reach out to each one of our employees who have not yet gotten vaccinated or may choose never to get vaccinated and to have a discussion with them about what we can do to help them through this," Robbins said.

Teams across the University are working in close collaboration on a daily basis to ensure compliance as the deadline approaches to prevent negative consequences for employees. Human Resources has been and will continue to reach out to those who haven't verified their vaccination or received an approved accommodation.

In February, a few weeks after the University began administering vaccinations on campus, Robbins reached out to employees to encourage them to get vaccinated and to share any barriers that prevented them from getting vaccinated.

Robbins issued a similar call during the briefing.

"We're going to work with everyone because we want everyone to be protected," he said. "But we want everyone to be working as well, because we need you. We need you at the University."

Visit the Human Resources employee COVID-19 vaccine requirement page for more information – including timelines for getting vaccinated before the deadline and an FAQ.

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