Time to vaccinate

June 11, 2021
Kim A. Wilcox
June 11, 2021

Dear Campus Community, 

If you have been waiting to get vaccinated, now is the time.

Over the last several months, vaccines have been available to UC Riverside employees through health care providers, pharmacies, and public clinics. Now, as we near the end of the academic year, we are experiencing minimal transmission of coronavirus on campus. Throughout California and the U.S., the increase in vaccine distribution parallels a steep decline of transmission, though it is important to note that neither cases nor deaths have stopped completely. The efforts to eradicate this deadly disease are working but the virus has not yet disappeared.

UC Vaccination Policy
While COVID-19 vaccination is currently voluntary, a UC vaccination policy will be finalized and issued by July 15. The effective date for policy compliance will be two weeks before faculty, staff, and students are expected to be on campus for the fall quarter. The policy will allow for narrow medical exemptions consistent with CDC guidance and manufacturer labeling, and students and employees will be able to request accommodation based on disability or religious belief. Additional information will be outlined broadly in general implementation guidance and in detail in location-specific guidance by mid-July. 

Submitting Your Vaccine Record 
So far, 28.8% of employees have submitted their COVID-19 immunization records. Immunization records are housed in the HIPAA-secure Epic system. If you have received your vaccination but have not yet submitted your information, please complete the COVID-19 Vaccine Tracking Form.

We will track and share updates on the percentage of employees and students who have submitted their proof of vaccination on the vaccines page of our Campus Return website.

All employees who complete the COVID-19 Vaccine Tracking Form by July 15, 2021, (including all those employees who have already submitted their record) will receive the below:

  • $5 in Bear Bucks on their R’Card or the option to donate $5 to R’Pantry; and 
  • A free R’Card, which normally costs $30 to order. The R’Card can be used as payment at campus stores and restaurants and offers several other benefits such as UCR Library privileges, educator discounts, and access to campus facilities.

Beyond the above, national awards and regional incentives like California’s Vax for the Win may also be available.

Health and Safety is the Priority 
Of course, the primary incentive to vaccinate remains your health and safety as well as the health and safety of those around you. We recognize that not everyone can be vaccinated, making it even more important for those who can.

In preparation for fall, UCR is participating in the White House College Vaccine Challenge and continue to encourage students to also get vaccinated. To date, 30% of current UCR students have submitted their form. 

Throughout the pandemic, I have regularly explained that the health and safety of the campus community guides our decision making. This priority is one each of us must own. Thank you for doing your part to keep yourself and our community safe.