Face coverings are required indoors regardless of vaccination status.
UW personnel and students are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

With the end of the state’s Healthy Washington phases on June 30, the University of Washington’s Bothell, Seattle and Tacoma campuses are basing our health and safety guidelines on state and local health requirements and guidance.

The following items apply to all UW campuses and work locations, with certain exemptions as indicated below. UW Medicine and units with clinical operations should continue to follow health-care-specific guidance.


You must continue to stay home if you are sick, have COVID-19 symptoms, or if you test positive for COVID-19. Notify UW Environmental Health & Safety if you test positive for COVID-19 or have close contact with an individual who has tested positive. This requirement applies even if you’re fully vaccinated. EH&S conducts public health follow-up, including contact tracing. UW Medicine medical center employees should contact their respective Employee Health Center. Additional details and contact information are in the relevant FAQ.


Current health requirements and guidelines

Instruction

Autumn quarter courses are largely in-person. Students needing accommodations and/or auxiliary aids due to a disability or temporary health condition should contact Disability Resources for Students.

Student life

Services are largely in-person, following public health guidance. Residence halls are operating at full capacity.

Vaccinations

All UW students and personnel are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or to have an approved medical or religious exemption. Under Governor Inslee’s proclamation, vaccination is a condition of employment as of Oct. 18, 2021.

Face coverings

The UW requires all individuals to wear a mask indoors, regardless of vaccination status. A mask or other suitable face covering is required indoors when other people are present and in all public and common areas, such as lobbies, hallways, stairways, restrooms, elevators and shared vehicles.

University personnel verified to be fully vaccinated in accordance with the University’s COVID-19 Vaccination Policy may temporarily remove their face coverings when formally presenting to or instructing a group or class in a large space from behind a podium or in a stage-like setting. Physical distance of at least six feet from others is required at all times while the face covering is removed. Masks that allow the lips to be visible in order to increase accessibility are available for units to purchase from the UW Creative Communications Safe and Clean Storefront.

Face coverings are required at outdoor events of more than 500 people, and strongly recommended at other outdoor events where physical distancing can’t be maintained.

Physical distancing, capacity and other updates

Based on state guidance, as of July 7, the UW lifted both indoor and outdoor distancing and COVID-19 capacity requirements, though distancing is still recommended for individuals who are not fully vaccinated.

Also consistent with state requirements, Environmental Health & Safety (EH&S) updated the University’s COVID-19 Prevention Plan template, in-person events guidance, cleaning and disinfection procedures, training and other guidance documents on its COVID-19 health and safety resources.

On-site work and related activities

High-risk populations

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

Travel

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


Safely returning to our campuses

A range of health and safety measures are in place for autumn quarter. Additionally, chancellors, deans, vice presidents and other direct reports to President Cauce and Provost Richards received Back-to-the-Workplace Guidance for Staff for the period beginning Sept. 11, 2021. This guidance is supplemented by UWHR’s Return to onsite work page, which includes on-site work and telework resources for managers and employees.

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Back-to-School Task Force

Learn more about the task force overseeing how to promote both safety and academic excellence at the Bothell, Seattle and Tacoma campuses.

Sven Haakanson, a curator of Native American anthropology at the Burke Museum, works with artifacts at a lab bench.

Back-to-the-Workplace Task Force

Learn more about the resources and information available to help staff, faculty and other academic personnel work safely and productively whether on- or off-campus.


Archived information: Healthy Washington phases

The state’s Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery plan ended June 30. The following information is maintained as an archive of the University’s application the Healthy Washington phases. Units may have had guidelines that were stricter than the University-level guidelines.

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

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

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.


State and county dashboards

The state of Washington is monitoring the outbreak and reporting information through its COVID-19 Risk Assessment Dashboard. 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.