The UO will offer vaccines to all its employees in April

Coronavirus vaccine bottle

COVID-19 vaccine clinics for University of Oregon employees will begin the week of April 19, with clinics for students to follow in May. Employees will receive an invitation to schedule a vaccination appointment at one of several scheduled clinics.

“This is great news for our UO community and an important next step in our effort to return to mostly in-person instruction, research and activities in fall term,” said André Le Duc, chief resilience officer. “We encourage employees to take this opportunity to get vaccinated and aid in the university’s strategy to safeguard the UO community as we continue to work towards getting back together.”

“We will have ample supply of doses so that all UO employees who want a vaccine will be able to get one,” said Krista Dillon, safety and risk services director of operations.

Vaccination clinics for Eugene locations will be held on weekdays during regular business hours April 21-29 at Autzen Stadium. Exact days and times will be provided when appointment scheduling begins. Employees will be able drive through, walk through or bike through the clinic to receive their vaccinations, which will be given by pharmacy technicians from Albertsons Pharmacy.

Arrangements are being made to also provide UO Portland employees and Oregon Institute of Marine Biology employees access to vaccines. More information will be shared with employees who work at those locations as it becomes available.

“Getting vaccinated at a UO-based clinic is not the only option available to UO employees,” Dillon said. “If an employee has the opportunity to receive a vaccine through a health care provider, pharmacy or public health clinic before it is available through the university’s process, there is no reason to wait until our clinics begin.”

UO community members, including those who meet state criteria for frontline workers, may become eligible for vaccines before UO clinics begin and may register with their county, pharmacy or health care provider to receive a vaccine. This may be the faster route for getting a vaccine for some individuals.

Those living in Lane County can make a vaccination appointment through the Lane County Public Health appointment form. You must be eligible under current Oregon Health Authority guidelines to schedule an appointment.

Vaccinating students, faculty and staff will happen in step with the Oregon Health Authority’s vaccine eligibility schedule. According to state guidance, students will become eligible for vaccines no later than May 1 based on OHA’s phased approach for vaccine distribution. The university will offer vaccination clinics for UO students; specific dates and details will be announced.  

All faculty, officers of administration, classified employees, graduate employees and student employees will receive an invitation through their UO email account no later than April 12 to schedule their vaccination appointments. The clinics will use the Pfizer vaccine, which requires two doses, the second no earlier than 21 days after the first.

Employees will schedule appointments for both their first and second dose at the same time. Clinics for the second dose of the vaccine will be held May 12-20.

Employees who are working at the time of their scheduled vaccination should make arrangements with their supervisor to ensure appropriate coverage while employees are released from work to attend the appointment. Attending a vaccination appointment while on duty will be considered paid time. Employees are not required to get a COVID-19 vaccine.

Vaccines at UO-based clinics are free. However, employees will be asked to provide health insurance information so that Albertsons Pharmacy can bill available insurance for administering the vaccine. 

The vaccine email invitation will ask employees to either sign up for a vaccine appointment or indicate that they have already been vaccinated. Collecting information about vaccination rates will assist with contact tracing during case management and planning for fall.

Understanding the total number of UO community members who are vaccinated helps the university plan for safely resuming more in-person campus experiences and greatly assists with its ability to address future COVID-19 cases as they occur, said Mark Schmelz, chief human resources officer. 

“While powerful, vaccines are not the only strategy in our safety tool box,” Schmelz said. “We will continue to rely on current strategies, such as face masks, testing and contact tracing, to lower the risk of COVID-19 as more people return to campuses. These measures remain important whether someone is or is not vaccinated.”

Visit the UO coronavirus website to stay informed about COVID-19 vaccines and the university’s continued response to the pandemic.