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State Mandate Impacts COVID-19 Vaccination Medical Exemption for Some Employees and Student Workers

September 07, 2021
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​Washington Gov. Jay Inslee issued a proclamation on Aug. 20 that affects some employees and student workers who have submitted a COVID-19 vaccination medical exemption form to Whitworth. One of the two medical exemption options Whitworth had previously accepted from employees has been disallowed. Here is the original exemption language that is no longer a valid option:

Option 2: The patient has health concerns about the COVID-19 vaccines and has discussed those with me. I verify that I have consulted with the patient on the risks and benefits of the COVID-19 vaccines as they relate to the patient's health concerns associated with receiving the COVID-19 vaccines.
Healthcare Provider Initial _____

This mandate impacts employees of all types (full time, part time, contractors, vendors, volunteers, student employees, etc.). Students who have selected this exemption option are not impacted by the mandate unless they are also employed by the university or planning to become employed by the university. In those cases, their exemption is invalid for continued or new employment on campus.

What do I do if I claimed this exemption?

A representative from human resource services and/or student employment will contact each employee, including student employees, who claimed this exemption to discuss your options, which are:
  1. Receive the COVID-19 vaccination (per the mandate, a person must be fully vaccinated by Oct. 18; please see below), or
  2. Submit a different reason for a valid exemption (either Medical: Option 1 or Religious). Employees may access the revised medical exemption form here and the religious exemption form here. Student employees may find both exemption forms here.      
When would I need to get the vaccine to meet the Oct. 18, 2021, deadline?

Refer to the chart below. You must receive two doses of Moderna/Pfizer or one dose of Janssen/Johnson & Johnson by Oct. 4, 2021, to meet the proclamation deadline. 

COVID-19
Vaccine
Series dose requirementFirst dose no later thanSecond dose no later than Fully vaccinated = two weeks past final dose (must be by Oct. 18, 2021)
Pfizer2 doses, 21 days apartSept. 13, 2021Oct. 4, 2021Oct. 18, 2021
Moderna2 doses, 28 days apartSept. 6, 2021Oct. 4, 2021Oct. 18, 2021
Janssen/Johnson & JohnsonSingle-doseOct. 4, 2021N/AOct. 18, 2021
 
The governor's proclamation cited the heightened risk present in our state and the need for added protection from the highly contagious delta variant. Whitworth continues to prioritize the safety of our campus for both employees and students by putting into practice the mandates and guidelines set by both state and local health authorities.

Whitworth's employee vaccination policy is currently being updated to reflect these changes and, when finalized this week, can be found in the FAQs on our COVID-19 webpage.