Update: Vaccination and Saliva Testing Exemption
Dear Faculty, Staff and Students,
Last week, the University of Illinois System and UIC announced that all students will be required to get a COVID-19 vaccination prior to the fall 2021 semester. This requirement is a crucial step to protect our community and it is consistent with decisions we have made throughout the pandemic, guided by current public health and scientific recommendations, to ensure that we can return to mostly normal operations in the fall.
With this new requirement, we anticipate that the majority of our campus will be fully vaccinated, and it will allow us to ease restrictions on masking, social distancing and saliva testing. We want to share additional guidance to prepare our campus for the fall 2021 semester:
VACCINATION AND COVID-19 SALIVA TESTING EXEMPTION
The student vaccination requirement applies to students at all campus locations, including the regional campuses, although implementation will be handled locally by the regional deans.
Currently, vaccination is not a requirement for faculty and staff to participate in on-campus activities during the fall 2021 semester. However, all employees are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated for the health and safety of our entire community.
Throughout the pandemic, UIC has relied on regular COVID-19 saliva testing, daily health screening and contact tracing programs to minimize the spread of COVID-19 among our campus community.
All students, faculty and staff will have the option to immediately opt-out of regular saliva testing and daily health screenings if you are fully vaccinated and you disclose your COVID-19 vaccination status.
Beginning today, all faculty, staff and students will find a new section of the UIC Healthcheck app that gives you the option to disclose your COVID-19 vaccination status. Upon disclosing that you are fully vaccinated (at least 14 days since your final dose of a COVID-19 vaccine), you will no longer be required to participate in mandatory on-campus saliva testing and you will no longer need to complete a regular self-attestation through the UIC Healthcheck app. Your UIC Daily Pass will remain green.
All individuals who have been fully vaccinated (including those who received their vaccination through UI Health) will need to complete this attestation through the UIC Healthcheck. In the coming weeks, those who have attested to being vaccinated in UIC Healthcheck will receive an email with instructions on how to submit proof of vaccination. Those who have not been vaccinated, or choose not to disclose, must continue to participate in mandatory on-campus saliva testing and health screening.
If you are a UI Health employee and you do not use the UIC Healthcheck app, you will receive instructions from the hospital on the process to disclose your vaccination status to receive an exemption from saliva testing.
If you have questions about disclosing your vaccination status, please email COVIDtesting@uic.edu.
Please note that if you have symptoms of COVID-19 you should isolate from others and be tested regardless of vaccination status. The vaccine is highly effective but not 100% and rapid identification of infection helps prevent transmission to others.
The campus masking guidance, updated May 19, remains in effect. However, we anticipate modification to masking requirements once we have confirmed that a significant percentage of the campus population is vaccinated.
QUARANTINE AND ISOLATION
Fully vaccinated individuals who have disclosed their vaccination status using the UIC Healthcheck app will not be required to quarantine if they are a close contact of someone with a positive COVID-19 test or if they have returned from international or domestic travel.
Anyone with symptoms of COVID-19 or a positive COVID-19 test, regardless of vaccination status, will need to follow the guidance provided by the university’s contact tracing team.
All travel (personal or business) should continue to be reported per updated guidance available on the COVID-19 University Travel webpage.
TEACHING PLANS FOR FALL
Over the next few weeks, Acting Provost Karen Colley will be meeting with the Academic Planning Task Force and other faculty groups to consult with them on how to best implement classroom instruction in the fall, taking into consideration the new student vaccination requirements and any changes in masking and social distancing that may be implemented as a result.
WHERE TO OBTAIN A VACCINATION
If you have not been vaccinated, you can take advantage of free, convenient vaccination appointments that are available on campus. For more information about COVID-19 vaccination at UIC/UI Health or to make an appointment, visit vaccine.uihealth.care. If you have any questions about making a vaccine appointment, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Beginning Monday, June 28, UI Health is making it even easier for staff and patients to get the COVID-19 vaccine by transitioning to convenient UI Health locations:
University Village Vaccine Site (UIC Students and Employees, Patients, Community)
724 W. Maxwell St.
Tuesday, Wednesday: 1 to 4 p.m.
Thursday: 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.
Appointments available online and by phone; walk-ins welcome. Free parking is available in the Maxwell Street Parking Garage.
College of Pharmacy, Room B8 (UIC Employees only)
Mondays: 7:30 a.m. to 3 p.m. (open July 6 due to July 5 holiday)
Walk-ins are welcome.
EEI Auditorium (UI Health Patients)
1855 W. Taylor St.
Monday–Friday: 8:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m.
Offering first and second doses
Appointments will be made by clinic staff
Effective today, the Credit Union 1 Arena will transition to provide second dose-only vaccinations through July 16. Students, employees, patients, and Chicago residents who received a first dose at CU1 will go there for the second dose. Appointments are required.
Individuals may wish to be vaccinated in their local areas. You can use vaccines.gov resources to find available appointments or walk-in hours near you.
We will continue to share information by email and on today.uic.edu and provide updates as our plans for fall evolve.
Acting Provost and Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs
Robert Barish, MD, MBA
Vice Chancellor for Health Affairs
Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs
Susan Bleasdale, MD
Acting Chief Quality Officer and Medical Director, Infection Prevention and Control