Administrative Mandate On Required COVID-19 Vaccination

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Purpose

To protect and preserve the health, safety, and welfare of the UNM community, the University of New Mexico requires that all faculty, staff, and students accessing University facilities, housing, programs, services, and activities in person to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19, subject to limited exemptions.

To be considered fully vaccinated, all current employees and students are required to have completed their initial vaccine series, as well as their initial booster dose of the vaccine when eligible according to the FDA. Individuals who completed their initial mRNA vaccine series (two doses of Pfizer or Moderna) on or before June 15, 2021, or their initial viral vector vaccine (single dose of Johnson & Johnson) on or before October15, 2021, must provide documentation of receipt of their initial booster dose no later than January 17, 2022.

Individuals who completed their initial mRNA vaccine (two doses of Pfizer or Moderna) after June 15, 2021, or who completed their initial viral vector vaccine (Johnson & Johnson) after October 15, 2021, must provide documentation of receipt of their initial booster within four weeks of eligibility, according to criteria provided by the FDA (5 months after completing an initial two dose mRNA vaccine series, and 2 months after receiving a viral vector vaccine). At this time, UNM is not requiring multiple booster doses of the vaccine.

Note: On January 7, 2022, the FDA shortened the booster eligibility criteria for mRNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) to five months after initial vaccine series.

Application

This mandate applies to all UNM personnel and students who access UNM facilities, housing, programs, services, and activities located on the Main Campus in Albuquerque, the Academic Health Sciences Campus in Albuquerque, Gallup Campus, Los Alamos Campus, Taos Campus, and the Valencia Campus. Campus facilities include, but are not limited to: office buildings, libraries, classrooms, dormitories, research laboratories, dining facilities, student centers, athletics facilities, entertainment venues, gymnasiums, university buses and shuttles, and our sites at Mesa Del Sol. This mandate does not apply to employees of UNM Hospitals, UNM Medical Group and the Sandoval Regional Medical Center; these UNM entities have specific policies pertaining to their employees and facilities.

COVID-safe practices (CSPs) are currently in force at all locations listed above in accordance with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidance and the New Mexico Department of Health (DOH) mandates. Individuals who are not vaccinated and do not have an approved exemption may not be cleared to access University facilities, housing, programs, services, or activities in person. Individuals who are not vaccinated may be required to participate in or implement additional CSPs to mitigate risk to others whenever they access University facilities, housing, services, programs, or activities in person, including but not limited to weekly COVID testing.

Procedures

All employees and students MUST provide documentation of full vaccination using a vaccine authorized by FDA License or under an FDA Emergency Use Authorization (EUA), and documentation of receipt of a booster dose of the vaccine, if eligible according to the booster criteria defined by the FDA, unless they qualify for an exemption.

To be considered fully vaccinated, all current employees and students are required to have completed their initial vaccine series, as well as their initial booster dose of the vaccine when eligible according to the FDA. Individuals who completed their initial mRNA vaccine series (two doses of Pfizer or Moderna) on or before June 15, 2021, or their initial viral vector vaccine series (single dose of Johnson & Johnson) on or before October15, 2021, must provide documentation of receipt of their initial booster dose no later than January 17, 2022.

Individuals who completed their initial mRNA vaccine series (two doses of Pfizer or Moderna) after June 15, 2021, or who completed their initial viral vector vaccine series (single dose of Johnson & Johnson) after October 15, 2021, must provide documentation of receipt of their initial booster within four weeks of eligibility, according to criteria provided by the FDA (5 months after completing an initial two dose mRNA vaccine series, and 2 months after receiving a viral vector vaccine).  At this time, UNM is not requiring multiple booster doses of the vaccine.

 

Note: On January 7, 2022, the FDA shortened the booster eligibility criteria for mRNA vaccines (Pfizer and Moderna) to five months after initial vaccine series.

All newly hired faculty and staff employees are required, prior to their start date, to provide documentation of full vaccination, and if eligible according to the FDA, proof of a booster dose of the vaccine. 

All newly admitted students are required, no later than 10 days prior to the start of the semester, to provide documentation of full vaccination, and if eligible according to the FDA, proof of a booster dose of the vaccine. Late starting students may not enroll in or take classes unless they have provided documentation of full vaccination, and if eligible according to the FDA, proof of a booster dose of the vaccine.

All documentation to verify vaccination or exemptions must be uploaded.

International students vaccinated with a vaccine from the World Health Organization Emergency Use List (WHO EUL) may submit documentation of that vaccination; these students are recommended to be vaccinated again upon arrival in New Mexico using an FDA approved vaccine and subsequently submit documentation of that vaccination.  Students who have received vaccines from the WHO EUL must still receive a booster and should contact vaxthepack@unm.edu for additional guidance on requirements and deadlines.

Exemptions

Disability/Serious Medical Condition/Medical Contraindications: If a covered individual cannot receive the COVID-19 vaccine due to a qualifying disability/serious medical condition or medical contraindications or precautions as confirmed by a medical provider, a request for an exemption must be submitted to the Vaccine Verification website for review by the Office of Compliance, Ethics, and Equal Opportunity.  This exemption request must be supported by documentation from a health care provider licensed as such within the State of New Mexico.  A person who is granted an exemption may be required to adhere to additional safety measures to ensure the health and safety of the individual and the University community, which may include required weekly COVID-19 testing.

Students requiring medical accommodations in their academic environment must submit a request for review by the Accessibility Resource Center.

Religious: An exemption to the COVID-19 vaccine mandate may be granted based on a person’s sincerely held religious belief, practice, or observance. A request for exemption must be submitted to the Vaccine Verification website for review by the Office of Compliance, Ethics, and Equal Opportunity. A person who is granted an exemption may be required to adhere to additional safety measures to ensure the health and safety of the individual and the University community, which may include required weekly COVID-19 testing. 

Limited Remote Work Exemption: Employees working entirely remotely can request a Limited Remote Work Exemption on that basis. This request must attest that the employee will not access any university site or facility at any of our campus locations for any purpose and must be endorsed by the employee’s supervisor. Employees requesting this exemption should refer to the specific requirements as outlined on the appropriate exemption request form.  Once employees have obtained all appropriate approvals, the request should be uploaded by the employee to the vaccination verification site.  At this time, employees at the Health Sciences Center are not eligible for the Limited Remote Work Exemption.

Limited Remote Learning Exemption: Students who are completing all their courses online may request a Limited Remote Learning Exemption to the vaccination requirement. An exemption form will be provided to make this request, which must be signed by both the student and an academic advisor, and then uploaded by the student at the vaccination verification site. Limited Remote Learning Exemptions must be submitted and approved each semester.

Existing Policies Concerning COVID-safe Practices

This action supplements, and does not replace, existing policies and guidelines requiring all faculty, staff and students to observe CSPs including appropriate use of either personal protective equipment and/or face coverings, social and physical distancing, frequent handwashing and cleaning, and regular surveillance testing.


This page last updated on Monday, May 16th at 9:30am