This message was sent to faculty and staff via email on August 2, 2021.
Dear Faculty and Staff,
Earlier today, the University of Rochester, along with officials from Rochester Regional Health, the Monroe County Health Department, and others jointly announced that each will be requiring employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 or submit to frequent regular COVID testing and stricter safety protocols, including daily symptom tracking and masking indoors. The full UR Medicine health system of hospitals, nursing homes, and home care agencies, is also participating in the program. This move is in keeping with the University’s ongoing commitment to the health and safety of every member of our community, which is our top priority.
To implement this requirement and to manage public health at our University, all faculty and staff, including those who are working in a hybrid model or remotely, are required to report their vaccination status by Monday, August 16, by completing the online COVID Vaccine Participation Form. The University has already begun efforts to collect this information from students returning to campus, as well as Medical Center faculty and staff.
Those who do not report their vaccination status by the August 16 deadline will be referred to the Office of the Provost (for faculty) or the Department of Human Resources (for staff) for follow-up.
Employees who have not already submitted a vaccination form online are asked to do so as soon as possible before August 16. Those who received their vaccinations through an Employee Health vaccination clinic at the Friends of Strong waiting room or Conference Rooms ACF A&B at Strong Memorial Hospital do not have to complete the form as their information is already in the University’s system. Please be assured that vaccination information submitted to the University will not affect an employee’s employment status.
To submit a vaccination form:
- Log in to the COVID Vaccine Participation Form. To access the form, employees must either be on-site at the University or connected to the University’s secure Virtual Private Network, and must enter their username and password (active directory credentials used for logging into a University work computer or email). The University is using a secure and reliable system through Strong Memorial Hospital. As a result, the form will have Strong Memorial Hospital branding, even though it is being used by all University employees. If you have a problem logging in, please call University IT Helpdesk at (585) 275-2000 or email to UnivITHelp@rochester.edu.
- Complete the survey. Those who report being vaccinated will then be directed to submit proof of vaccination.
The Medical Center will continue its existing reporting procedures per requirement of the New York State Department of Health. Managers whose employees do not have access to a computer during work hours must accommodate staff so that they can complete this process on work time.
Members of the University community who are not yet vaccinated and would like to be should receive a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, or first dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines by Wednesday, September 8.
Faculty and staff who choose not to be vaccinated will be required to participate in a frequent regular PCR nasal swab COVID testing program, complete the Dr. Chat Bot questionnaire daily (note all employees who work in clinical areas are still required to complete Dr. Chat Bot daily regardless of vaccine status; and all unvaccinated staff should complete Dr. Chat Bot regardless of whether or not they will be on site), and wear a facemask at all times when at the University. These protocols also apply to employees who are in the process of getting vaccinated between the reporting deadline of August 16 and receiving their single dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the first dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccine by September 8, as well as the subsequent two-week period that follows for immunity to take effect.
Testing for unvaccinated employees will begin Monday, September 20. Specifics about the testing program, which is being developed by URMC’s Employee Health and the University Health Service, will be disseminated by mid-September.
The University will sponsor on-campus vaccine clinics to make it easy and convenient for employees to receive the vaccine. In addition, the Finger Lakes COVID-19 Vaccine Hub and the Monroe County COVID-19 vaccine webpage have up-to-date information on how to obtain a vaccine as early as today. Once vaccinated, employees will be able to edit their information on the COVID Vaccine Participation Form.
A reminder that employees receive up to four hours of paid time off from work to receive the vaccine without having to use their existing PTO, sick time, or vacation. In addition, the University provides a paid vaccine day to full-time and part-time employees experiencing severe side effects after receiving the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine or the second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer vaccines.
Any vaccinated members of the University community who wish to wear a face mask for additional protection are encouraged to do so; the University is providing facemasks free of charge at distribution locations around campus.
For more information on the vaccination and testing/masking requirements, see the FAQ available on the University’s COVID-19 Resource Center. Please contact ASK URHR (firstname.lastname@example.org) with any further questions.
Thank you in advance for completing the form and helping to promote the health and safety of our University community. Your participation is essential as we look forward with optimism to the new academic year.
Sarah C. Mangelsdorf
President and G. Robert Witmer, Jr. University Professor
CEO, University of Rochester Medical Center and Dean, School of Medicine and Dentistry
Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer