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COVID-19 Interim Policies FAQ

Updated 11/2/21

Eligible employees may be entitled to certain COVID-19 related benefits under certain circumstances, and should consult with their HRM to confirm eligibility.

COVID-19 Interim Policies FAQ

Yes. As announced on Oct. 6, the university expanded its vaccination requirement to comply with President Biden’s Sep. 9 Executive Order. The executive order requires all employees of federal contractors to be vaccinated, which means that all Stanford faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars, including those working remotely in the United States, must be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 and upload proof of their vaccination status on Health Check by Jan. 4, 2022. Please note that the deadline has been extended from Dec. 8, 2021, to Jan. 4, 2022, consistent with the recent guidance from the federal government. Only those with an approved medical or religious accommodation will be exempt.

Yes, the vaccine requirement applies to all employees, regardless of their work location.

Yes. We are requiring vaccination for all who have not been vaccinated because there is strong evidence that vaccination adds significant protection even if you have already had COVID-19. As the Delta variant continues to drive higher infection and death among the unvaccinated, we must ensure the safety of our community.

No. At this time, only the initial COVID-19 vaccination is required at this time. All of our COVID-19 vaccination policies follow guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and other state and county public health authorities. As guidance evolves, we will update our vaccination requirements accordingly.

Employees returning to work from LOA are expected to be fully vaccinated upon their return or by Jan. 4, 2022, whichever is later, or have a request for accommodation on file.

Newly hired employees are expected to be fully vaccinated by their start date or by January 4, 2022, whichever is later, or have a request for accommodation on file.

Faculty, staff, and postdoctoral scholars may apply for an accommodation by Nov. 12 based on a disability or medical condition. Medical accommodations will be allowed only for specific reasons consistent with guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), including:

  • Documented history of severe allergic reaction to one or more components of all three currently approved COVID-19 vaccines.

  • Documented history of severe or immediate-type hypersensitivity allergic reaction to a COVID-19 vaccine, and separate contraindication to other available formulations.

Learn more about the COVID-19 Vaccination Medical and Religious Accommodation criteria and process or submit a request for accommodation

In accordance with relevant federal and California law, and in accordance with Stanford’s policy on workplace accommodations, faculty, staff and postdoctoral scholars may apply for an accommodation by Nov. 12 based on a sincerely held religious belief. Please be advised that social, political, or economic philosophies, or personal preferences, are not considered to be religious beliefs. Learn more about the Medical and Religious Accommodation Criteria and Process

Employees who are fully remote and do not come to Stanford must comply with the vaccine requirement or have an approved accommodation, but are not required to test unless they have symptoms. If a fully remote employee must come to a Stanford location for any reason, they must have a negative COVID-19 test less than 48 hours prior to that event.

Employees on LOA or PTO must have a negative COVID-19 test less than 48 hours before returning to the workplace.

Anyone who has not uploaded verification of full vaccination or who does not have an approved medical or religious accommodation by January 4, 2022, will not be eligible to work or be paid and will be placed in an unpaid status for a 30-day period. Vacation, PTO or other leave time cannot be used during this period. Since you will be in unpaid status, you will not receive paid holidays, and you will be responsible for the full cost of health benefits beginning February 1st (including the cost of the university’s contributions). Those who are not compliant with the vaccination requirement or have not been approved for an accommodation by the end of the 30-day period will be separated from Stanford.

Yes, eligible employees may use up to 24 hours for self-care and personal wellness. The use of COVID Flex Hours for non-quarantine or non-illness-related purposes is subject to your manager’s approval, and you should discuss scheduling arrangements with your manager in advance.

This self-care time is not intended as a substitute for using your vacation time, which allows you to take extended breaks from work. Please work with your manager to discuss your individual situation. 

For more information on eligibility and qualifying uses, please see the COVID Flex Hours policy page.

Effective Sept. 20, 2021, regular surveillance testing will be required for faculty, academic and non-academic staff, contingent employees and postdoctoral scholars who are working on-site, regardless of vaccination status. Also, employees who are unvaccinated are required to complete additional health and safety measures, including self-reporting daily health status in Health Check and increased weekly surveillance testing. View more details about the COVID-19 Vaccination and Surveillance testing policy for faculty, staff, and postdocs

If you are restricted from returning to Stanford due to personal travel and are unable to work from home, you may use COVID Flex Hours, and/or vacation/PTO/floating holiday, or take an unpaid leave of absence. For information about the university’s travel guidance, visit Health Alerts.

If you are required to self-isolate because you are sick or tested positive for COVID-19, you may use COVID Flex Hours and/or your accrued sick leave. Consult with your manager or school/unit HR manager about other available benefits based on your specific circumstance.

If you are not sick, but are required to quarantine due to possible exposure, and cannot perform your work from home, you may be eligible for quarantine pay

If you are required to self-isolate because you are sick or tested positive for COVID-19, you may use COVID Flex Hours and/or your accrued sick leave. Consult with your manager or school/unit HR manager about other available benefits based on your specific circumstance.

If you are restricted from returning to Stanford due to personal travel and are well, but you cannot work from home, you may use COVID Flex Hours and/or vacation/PTO/floating holiday, or take an unpaid leave of absence. For information about the university’s travel guidance, visit Health Alerts.

To support employees during this period of uncertainty, the university has created new interim policies, effective September 1. Employees should consult with their supervisor to discuss options such as flexible work arrangements, COVID Flex Hours, personal leave, Paid Family Leave if eligible, etc. Visit COVID-19 Family Resources for additional resources. 

In addition to university support, state and federal programs provide expanded benefits that may also be of assistance in particular situations related to COVID-19 impacts.

We recognize returning to the workplace may be a concern for some employees. The health and safety of our community is our top priority. In following guidance from Santa Clara County Public Health, the university is implementing new protocols and safety practices to keep our community safe as more people return to the workplace. Because the workplace will be different, to prepare for your return, please talk with your manager to understand the changes that are implemented in your specific building. If afterwards you are still uncomfortable, talk with your manager and/or your school/unit HR manager to understand your options. If you are sick with COVID-19, please stay home and use COVID Flex Hours and/or sick leave.

Contingent employees are eligible for quarantine pay. Casual employees who do not work a regular schedule may receive quarantine pay for work hours scheduled prior to the quarantine period that the casual employee is prevented from working due to quarantine.

Contingent employees are also eligible for COVID Flex Hours. Please see the COVID Flex Hours policy page for more information on eligibility and qualifying uses.