SEC-045: COVID-19 Health & Safety Requirements – Vaccination, Testing, Face Masks, Events and Gatherings, and Visitors

Applies To:

Academic Division for the 2021-2022 Academic Year.

Reason for Policy:

The University is committed to providing a safe environment in which to teach, perform research, work, learn, and study. Because coronavirus (COVID-19) can spread quickly and cause widespread illness and death, the University has established requirements and recommendations for vaccination, testing, face coverings, events and gatherings, and visitors to the University to protect faculty, staff, and students from potential exposure to this disease. The University strongly encourages that all members of the University community get vaccinated and boosted as soon as they are eligible.

Definition of Terms in Statement:
  • Event or Gathering:

    In-person, on- or off-Grounds assembly, meeting, or convening that brings together multiple people from separate households in a single space, indoors or outdoors, at the same time for a common purpose to conduct University business or student activity. Events and gatherings may include meetings, social events, or other extracurricular activities that bring together people for in-person interaction. Events and gatherings do not include University-scheduled classes or labs. Events and gatherings do not include settings in which people are in the same general space at the same time but doing separate activities, like dorms, offices, stores, and restaurants where people may be working, shopping, or eating in the same general area but not gathering together in an organized fashion.

  • Face Covering (Face Mask):

    Face coverings/masks are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) and the Virginia Department of Health primarily to slow the spread of COVID-19 by reducing spread of the virus from the wearer to others. They are not intended to provide protection from inhalation of small particles or virus aerosols. According to CDC guidance, an effective face covering will:

    • Cover both the mouth and the nose;
    • Fit snugly but comfortably against the side of the face;
    • Include multiple layers of tightly woven fabric or multiple layers of non-woven material, e.g., 3-ply disposable masks;
    • Allow for breathing without restriction; and
    • Be one that you will wear consistently.
  • Fully Vaccinated:

    Fully Vaccinated: Per CDC guidance, people are considered fully vaccinated:

    • 2 weeks after their second dose in a 2-dose series, such as the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines;
    • 2 weeks after a single-dose vaccine, such as Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen vaccine; or
    • 2 weeks after the last dose of vaccines that have been authorized for emergency use by the World Health Organization.
  • University Property:

    Land or buildings that the University owns or leases and that is under the control of the Board of Visitors. University property also includes premises the University uses for activities of its offices, departments, personnel, or students.

Policy Statement:

To protect faculty, staff, students, contractors, and visitors from potential exposure to COVID-19, the University encourages individuals to follow CDC guidelines and federal, state, and local directives. All faculty, staff, students, and contractors are required to follow COVID-19 risk mitigation measures, as directed by the University.

  1. COVID-19 Vaccination: All students, full-time and part-time UVA faculty and staff, including those working remotely, are strongly encouraged to receive their primary series of COVID-19 vaccine and a booster dose when eligible per CDC recommendation. This policy does not apply to UVA Health Team Members who are governed by OCH-002: Occupational Health Screening and Maintenance. Team Members are all persons providing clinical, educational, research, administrative, or other services within or for the benefit of the Health System, regardless of employer. This includes School of Medicine and School of Nursing students who are required to be in health system facilities for training or practical experience.

  2. Testing: Students who are experiencing COVID-19 symptoms should contact Student Health and Wellness for care instructions and testing. Symptomatic employees should contact Employee Health, and if COVID-19 positive, should refer to specific procedures on the HR website. All students, faculty, and staff are encouraged to test if they develop symptoms or come into close contact with an individual who tests positive. UVA Health Team Members are governed by OCH-002: Occupational Health Screening and Maintenance. Team Members are all persons providing clinical, educational, research, administrative, or other services within or for the benefit of the Health System, regardless of employer. This includes School of Medicine and School of Nursing students who are required to be in health system facilities for training or practical experience.

  3. Face Masks: Wearing masks is optional in UVA properties and on public transportation with the following exception: masks must be worn in UVA Health and Student Health and Wellness Center clinical spaces or where patient care is provided.


    1. AMERICANS WITH DISABILITIES ACT (ADA) ACCOMMODATIONS: Some members of the University community may have pre-existing conditions that preclude them from wearing a mask; the relevant UVA office will evaluate requests for accommodation to determine whether there is a qualifying disability-related condition under ADA and a reasonable accommodation. Students with qualifying disability-related conditions can contact the Student Disability Access Center (SDAC) to seek accommodations related to masking requirements. Employees with qualifying disability-related conditions can seek accommodations related to masking requirements by following the Procedures for Employees with Disabilities to Request Workplace Accommodations.
  4. Events and Gatherings: Individuals should follow CDC guidelines for safe in-person events and gatherings.

  5. Visitors to the University: Visitors are allowed on Grounds and must comply with the face mask requirements listed above.

Compliance with Policy: If a student or employee violates the rules and requirements around University risk mitigation and public health measures, it may result in disciplinary action in accordance with relevant University policies.

Effective Term of the Policy: We will continue to monitor 1) public health conditions, (including case counts, hospitalizations, and other conditions); 2) federal, state, local directives; and 3) CDC and VDH guidelines closely and will adjust this policy as circumstances warrant in order to mitigate the spread of COVID-19. This policy will remain in effect until federal, state, local, and/or University directives deem that mitigation measures are no longer necessary or recommended to help reduce the spread of COVID-19.

Questions about this policy should be directed to Emergency Management, Environmental Health and Safety, or the Office of the Vice President and Chief Student Affairs OfficerCOVID

Effective Date: 09/02/2021 Last Revised Date: 04/20/2022
Policy Type: University
Oversight Executive: President of the University
Major Category: Safety, Security and Environmental Quality
Next Scheduled Review: 07/01/2022
Approved by, Date: President of the University, 09/02/2021
Revision History: Revised Vaccination and Face Masks effective 4/20; Revised Face Masks effective 3/28; Revised Testing, Face Masks, Compliance with Policy, Events and Gatherings effective 3/21/22; Revised Events and Gatherings effective 2/05/22; Revised Reason for Policy, COVID-19 Vaccination and Testing 1/31/22; Revised Reason for Policy, Definition Face Covering, COVID-19 Vaccination, Testing, Compliance with Policy 1/19/22; Revised Events and Gatherings and next scheduled review date 1/14/22; Revised Exceptions 1/11/22; Revised Vaccination and next scheduled review date 1/7/22; Revised Vaccination (Faculty/Staff) 1/5/22; Revised Vaccination 12/21/21; Revised next scheduled review date 12/6/21; Revised Section 1 Faculty & Staff date for receipt of final vaccination dose 11/8/21; Revised Vaccination and Testing sections 10/28/21; Revised masking exceptions and next scheduled review date 10/22/21; Reviewed and revised next scheduled review date, added definition of University Property 10/1/21; Revised Compliance with Policy/contract workers 9/28/21; Removed covered contract workers from Section 1 Contractors and Section 2 9/14/21. New academic year policy 9/2/21.