Campus Messages

An archive of email messages sent to the entire UCSF community by the Chancellor and members of the Chancellor's Cabinet.

UCSF’s Mandatory COVID-19 Vaccine Policy

Dear UCSF Community,

I am writing to provide you an update that the deadline for complying with the new UC-wide COVID-19 vaccination policy is Wednesday, Sept. 1, 2021. As required by the new policy issued by the UC office of the President, anyone coming onsite to any UCSF campus must be vaccinated or submit a request and get approval for an exception or deferral.

As you are aware, we are experiencing a surge of new COVID-19 cases in our community and at UCSF as the highly contagious Delta variant rapidly spreads in the Bay Area. We strongly encourage everyone to be vaccinated, including those who work remotely. Vaccination against the virus that causes COVID-19 is very effective in preventing serious illness and death.

Please take the time to carefully read this message. It provides instructions on actions you must take, including:

  1. Who must comply with the policy
  2. What you are required to do
  3. How to request a vaccination exception or deferral
  4. What you need to do if your request is approved
  5. What happens if you don’t comply with the policy
  6. Where to get more information
  1. Who must comply with the policy
  • All faculty, staff, students, trainees, contractors, vendors and volunteers, as well as newly hired employees, who come to work or study on a UCSF campus, must comply with this vaccination policy.
  • Non-UCSF employees will be required to work with their employers to submit proof of vaccination or an approved exception to UCSF.
  • All new UCSF employees hired after Sept. 1, must comply with this policy within eight weeks after starting employment.
  1. What you are required to do
  • If you were vaccinated at UCSF or provided proof of your vaccination at a location outside of UCSF to Occupational Health Services (OHS), you are compliant with this new policy and do not need to resubmit your vaccination record.
  • If you have not previously submitted your vaccination documentation, please submit it prior to Sept. 1, to the OHS portal at (MyAccess/VPN required) to be in compliance with the policy.
  • If you have not been vaccinated, please do so as soon as possible to help protect your health and safety and that of our community. UCSF offers drop-in vaccination at several campus locations.
  • If you previously declined the COVID-19 vaccination or took no previous action and wish to request an exception, you will now need to do so by the Sept. 1 deadline. To request an exception, go to the OHS website to download, complete and upload a form. All requests for exceptions will be reviewed and either approved or declined by the appropriate UCSF department in approximately three business days.
  1. How to request a vaccination exception or deferral

As described in the UC-wide policy, exceptions to being fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Sept. 1 include the following:

  • A medical exemption, based on contraindications or precautions to COVID-19 vaccination that are recognized by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or by the vaccines’ manufacturers.
  • A deferral due to pregnancy or recent diagnosis of COVID-19.
  • A disability accommodation, which includes pregnancy, childbirth, or a related medical condition where reasonable accommodation is medically advisable.
  • A religious objection that is based on the Constitutional right to religious liberty and a sincerely held belief, practice, or observance that conflicts with the University’s COVID-19 vaccination requirement.

Please note that a request for medical exemption and disability accommodation must be approved by a physician, nurse practitioner or other licensed medical professional practicing under the license of a physician. This UC policy is being implemented in accordance with our UCSF policies, collective bargaining agreements, and is subject to applicable collective bargaining obligations, if any.

  1. What you need to do if your request is approved
  • Importantly, if you are approved for an exception (or are awaiting approval for a requested exception) and are working or studying onsite, you will be required to wear a mask/face covering, maintain physical distancing and get tested weekly or twice weekly, depending on your role at UCSF.
  • Mandatory testing enforcement will officially begin on Sept. 1, but unvaccinated or partially vaccinated employees and learners are encouraged to begin regular COVID-19 testing now at UCSF locations, including UCSF Fresno.
  1. What happens if you don’t comply with the policy
  • Employees and learners who choose not to be fully vaccinated and who do not receive an approved exception or a deferral may be barred from physical access to UCSF’s facilities, programs and services.
  • Pursuant to the policy, collective bargaining agreements and subject to applicable collective bargaining obligations, if any, those who are non-complaint may also face consequences up to and including dismissal from education programs or employment.
  1. Where to get more information
  • If you remain undecided about getting a vaccine, please attend a COVID-19 vaccination Q&A webinar on Monday, Aug. 16, from noon to 1 p.m., where you can get your questions answered confidentially.
  • We will also devote the next COVID-Response Town Hall on Friday, August 6 to answer questions about the policy and will explain the emerging science about the Delta variant.
  • For more information about the policy, please visit the coronavirus website or send an email to [email protected].

We appreciate your compliance with this policy and with all the public health measures outlined by UCSF and public health officials. We share your hope that we can soon turn the tide on this pandemic. Thank you for all you do for our patients and learners, and for continuing to serve our communities.


Josh Adler, MD
Chief Clinical Officer, UCSF Heath
Vice Dean Clinical Affairs, UCSF School of Medicine