All Washington residents age 16 and up are eligible to be vaccinated at no cost.
Appointments available at UW Medicine and many other providers. Learn more.

Current Healthy Washington status

  • Bothell and Seattle campuses: Phase 3

  • Tacoma campus:  Phase 2

The University of Washington’s Bothell, Seattle and Tacoma campuses base their COVID-19 recovery phase in accordance with the state’s Healthy Washington plan (pdf) and its Campus Reopening Guide (pdf).

Due to case counts and hospitalizations in Pierce County exceeding Phase 3 limits, Pierce County returned to Phase 2 on April 16. UW Tacoma also returned to Phase 2 on this date. UW Bothell and the UW’s Seattle campus remain at Phase 3. On May 4, Governor Inslee announced a two-week pause on counties changing phases.

The following items apply to all UW campuses:

  • Face coverings are required on all campuses, even if you’ve been fully vaccinated.
  • The majority of courses are offered remotely. Additional in-person student services and activities are dependent on a campus’ current phase.
  • Telework is supported through Sept. 10, 2021. In Phase 2, telework is strongly encouraged. In Phase 3, if an employee can telework and it does not impede operations, they should be allowed to do so.
  • All on-site work must adhere to all appropriate safety measures, the Return to On-site Work Decision Tree and unit COVID-19 Prevention Plans.
  • Non-instructional events and gatherings must follow applicable restrictions from the state and University, including limits on attendees based on whether the event is indoors or outdoors.

More information on how the University is implementing the Healthy Washington phases is available below. Units need to be prepared to quickly move between phases, including back a phase, in the event of changes in state requirements.

Once the University has entered a phase, individual campus units are eligible to move to that phase after submission of their Safe Start Checklist and in accordance with their unit COVID-19 Prevention Plans.


You must stay home and if you are sick, have COVID-19 symptoms, or if your health provider confirms or suspects COVID-19. This requirement applies even if you’re fully vaccinated. Also notify UW Environmental Health & Safety for public health follow-up including contact tracing and facilitating testing. UW Medicine employees should contact their Employee Health Services office. Additional details and contact information are in the relevant FAQ.


University of Washington COVID-19 Healthy Washington phases

Units may have guidelines that are stricter than the University-level guidelines – please consult your supervisor or unit leadership with specific questions.

Healthy Washington Phase 1

On-site work and related activities: Telework is strongly encouraged. All on-site work must adhere to all appropriate safety measures and the unit’s COVID-19 Prevention Plan. Follow the Return to On-site Work Decision Tree to determine what work activities are permitted to occur on-site.

High-risk populations: Accommodations are required for employees at high-risk for serious illness who request them.

In-person, non-instructional university-sponsored events: Must follow COVID-19 prevention guidelines for events, including submitting a prevention plan. In general, events must follow specific capacity restrictions below.

  • Indoor: Only if necessary and with no more than six attendees. Hold events remotely when possible. No non-UW events on UW campuses.
  • Outdoor: Only if necessary and with no more than 10 attendees. Hold events remotely when possible. No non-UW events on UW campuses.

Travel: Official international travel and non-essential domestic travel are restricted under University guidelines. Non-essential personal travel is strongly discouraged. Check with your unit’s leadership regarding unit-specific restrictions.

Instruction:

  • Conducted in accordance with the state’s Campus Reopening Guide and UW guidance.
  • Majority of courses offered remotely.
  • Clinical instruction with safety protocols may be offered in-person.
  • Lab and practicum courses with physical distancing and safety protocols may be offered in-person.

Student life:

  • Services offered remotely with limited exceptions for services only able to be delivered in person.
  • Dining services match restaurant guidelines.
  • Student residents de-densified with appropriate physical distancing and public health procedures (roommates are considered household members).

Intercollegiate athletics: Operates under specific guidance from state and local health authorities.

Healthy Washington Phase 2 - Tacoma campus

On-site work and related activities: Telework is strongly encouraged. All on-site work must adhere to all appropriate safety measures and the unit’s COVID-19 Prevention Plan. Follow the Return to On-site Work Decision Tree to determine what work activities are permitted to occur on-site.

High-risk populations: Accommodations are required for employees at high-risk for serious illness who request them.

In-person, non-instructional university-sponsored events: Must follow COVID-19 prevention guidelines for events, including submitting a prevention plan. In general, events must follow specific capacity restrictions below.

  • Indoor: Maximum 25% capacity or 200 people, whichever is less. Events over 50 people require University approval via Environmental Health & Safety. Hold events remotely when possible. No non-UW events on UW campuses.
  • Outdoor: Groups of 15 attendees, not to exceed 200 people. Events over 50 people require University approval via Environmental Health & Safety. Hold events remotely when possible. No non-UW events on UW campuses.

Travel: Official international travel and non-essential domestic travel are restricted under University guidelines. Non-essential personal travel is strongly discouraged. Check with your unit’s leadership regarding unit-specific restrictions.

Instruction:

  • Conducted in accordance with the state’s Campus Reopening Guide and UW guidance.
  • Majority of courses offered remotely.
  • Clinical instruction with safety protocols may be offered in-person.
  • Lab and practicum courses with physical distancing and safety protocols may be offered in-person.

Student life:

  • Combination of remote and in-person services with appropriate physical distancing and public health procedures.
  • Student residents allowed with appropriate physical distancing and public health procedures (roommates are considered household members).

Intercollegiate athletics: Operates under specific guidance from state and local health authorities.

Healthy Washington Phase 3 - Bothell and Seattle campuses

On-site work and related activities:

  • Telework flexibility is supported through Sept. 10, 2021, which will also apply in Phase 4. If an employee can telework and it does not impede operations, they should be allowed to do so.
  • Employees who can telework but would prefer to come to campus may work on site if authorized by their unit as long as COVID-19 safety measures are in place and it is operationally feasible. All on-site work must adhere to all appropriate safety measures and the unit’s COVID-19 Prevention Plan. Follow the Return to On-site Work Decision Tree to determine what work activities are permitted to occur on-site.

High-risk populations: Accommodations are required for employees at high-risk for serious illness who request them.

In-person, non-instructional university-sponsored events: Must follow COVID-19 prevention guidelines, including submitting a prevention plan. In general, events must follow specific capacity restrictions below.

  • Indoor: Maximum 50% capacity or 400 people, whichever is less. Events over 100 people require University approval via Environmental Health & Safety. Face masks and at least a six-foot distance between people are required. Hold events remotely when possible. No non-UW events on UW campuses.
  • Outdoor: Not to exceed 400 people. Events over 100 people require University approval via Environmental Health & Safety. Face masks and at least a six-foot distance between people are required. Hold events remotely when possible. No non-UW events on UW campuses.

Travel: Official international travel and non-essential domestic travel are restricted under University guidelines. Non-essential personal travel is strongly discouraged. Check with your unit’s leadership regarding unit-specific restrictions.

Instruction:

Student life:

  • Combination of remote and in-person services with appropriate physical distancing and public health procedures.
  • Student residents allowed with appropriate physical distancing and public health procedures (roommates are considered household members).

Intercollegiate athletics: Operates under specific guidance from state and local health authorities, including guidelines for spectator events.

 

Healthy Washington Phase 4

Details on Healthy Washington Phase 4 will be posted when they are released by the state.


Returning to our campuses will happen in phases

While the move to remote work and classes was across-the-board and immediate, the move to having more employees working in-person on UW campuses will be both phased and specific to each unit’s circumstances.

Phase status is determined by the state based on a COVID-19 risk assessment. The Washington Department of Health reassess the metrics every two weeks and announces phase changes every other Friday. Units need to be prepared to move between phases, including back a phase, quickly in the event of changes week-to-week.

The general steps for each move to the next phase will be:

  1. The state moves a region with a UW campus or workplace to move to the next phase of the Healthy Washington plan. (King, Pierce and Snohomish counties comprise the Puget Sound region.)
  2. The change in phase is communicated to unit leaders (chancellors, deans and vice presidents) by the Executive Office along with any changes or updates needed to the University’s COVID-19 Prevention Plan. Units review their unit COVID-19 Prevention Plan(s) to ensure any new required elements are addressed, including adequate supplies, signage, space considerations for social distancing and training, and report back to the Executive Office on their overall readiness.
  3. Unit leaders will then communicate with their units outlining their plans and timelines for moving to the next phase (or reverting back to a previous phase).
  4. Each unit moves to the next phase on the date indicated, presuming there is no intervening change in the public health situation that would necessitate a reevaluation.

No unit can move to the next phase ahead of the state or University doing so, but a unit may delay its move to the next phase until it has completed the necessary preparations to do so safely.


State and county dashboards

The state of Washington is monitoring the outbreak and reporting information through its COVID-19 Risk Assessment Dashboard. This is the data that ultimately determines movement from one phase to another.

Similarly, King County lists key indicators of COVID-19 activity for the county, which is relevant to the Seattle campus and UW Bothell. And Pierce County maintains a dashboard that is relevant to UW Tacoma.