July 27, 2022
To: Members of the University Community
From: Ka Yee C. Lee, Provost, and Katie Callow-Wright, Executive Vice President of the University and Chief of Staff in the Office of the President
Subject: COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement Update for 2022-23 Academic Year
Date: July 26, 2022
Throughout the pandemic, our University community has taken a wide range of steps to limit the impact of COVID-19 and uphold our crucial mission of research and education. Today we write with an update on the University’s COVID-19 vaccination and testing requirements, developed with the guidance of experts at the University of Chicago Medicine.
The revised policies will take effect on September 16, 2022:
- Vaccine Requirement: All University employees and students will be required to provide proof that they have received at least two doses of a COVID-19 vaccine authorized or approved by the FDA or WHO. You can find vaccination options near you at vaccines.gov.
- Weekly Testing: Anyone who does not upload proof of receiving two vaccine doses will be required to participate in weekly COVID-19 testing if they are coming to a Chicago-area facility for any reason and at any frequency. In general, unvaccinated individuals no longer need to request an exemption from the vaccine mandate, though they are required to take part in weekly testing. Unvaccinated individuals who are working remotely or taking classes remotely may request an exemption from the weekly testing requirement based on their remote status.
- Booster Recommendation: Additional COVID-19 vaccine doses (e.g., booster shots) beyond the initial two vaccine doses will not be a University requirement; however, the University strongly recommends that individuals continue to receive vaccine boosters as recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
- N-12 and Healthcare Settings: Employees in an N-12 or healthcare/patient-facing environment may be subject to separate requirements and will receive additional communication.
Individuals who have already uploaded to my.WellnessPortal proof of vaccination with two doses do not need to take further action. Vaccinated individuals who have not uploaded proof of vaccination to the my.WellnessPortal are encouraged to do so as soon as possible, following these steps. For more information please see the vaccination FAQs.
We will communicate again soon with instructions for unvaccinated members of the community to enroll in weekly testing or apply for a remote-only exemption for testing.
The COVID-19 vaccination requirements will help prevent serious illness from COVID-19 and contribute to a level of immunity within the University community. While vaccines do not remove the risk of infection, they have been shown to reduce the average severity of COVID-19 disease. We are fortunate that most University employees and students already have received initial rounds of vaccination, as well as booster shots. The University will continue to reinforce expert medical guidance on recommended vaccine boosters as the pandemic evolves. The updated vaccination and testing policy is our plan for the 2022-23 academic year, which we will continue to evaluate and may modify if needed.
Thank you for your continued dedication to help uphold the health of our community.