Dec. 16: The University of California has released updated interim amendments to its systemwide vaccination policy; these changes went into effect Dec. 12 and are reflected in the content below. Get more information on these amendments, UCLA’s new deadlines and the public comment period for these new changes.
This page covers the following topics:
- UC vaccination and booster policy
- Vaccination terms and definitions
- How and where to get vaccines and boosters
- Getting vaccinated outside the U.S.
- Providing proof of your vaccination
- Requesting a vaccination exception or booster opt-out
- Returning to campus after being remote
Vaccination and booster policy
Getting vaccinated is one of the most effective ways to protect yourself from severe COVID-19 illness and hospitalization. In alignment with the University of California’s COVID-19 vaccination policy (PDF), UCLA students, faculty, staff and others who work, live or study on campus or at other UCLA facilities need to be fully vaccinated (and up to date on boosters) — with limited medical exceptions and accommodations based on disabilities or religious beliefs, as well as temporary deferrals for those who are pregnant or have recently had COVID-19.
The current UC interim policy — introduced Dec. 12, 2022 — also allows individuals who have received their primary vaccinations to opt out of receiving COVID-19 boosters by signing a declination statement, receiving education on vaccines and agreeing to certain non-pharmaceutical interventions, which may include mask-wearing and/or other mitigations. (UCLA health care workers, however, may not opt out of their first booster; only those who have received an official exception or deferral will be exempt.)
New students and employees: Entering students and new faculty and staff hires who will be learning, living or working on campus will need to have completed their primary COVID-19 vaccinations and must submit proof of their vaccination before arriving.
Full-time and hybrid schedules: The UC policy applies to all those working or learning on campus or UCLA facilities either full time or on a hybrid schedule, regardless of the amount of days worked each month.
Fully remote: While vaccinations and boosters are strongly urged for those working or learning fully remotely, they are not required. If, however, you return to work or class on campus, you will need to be up to date on your vaccinations and boosters and to submit proof to UCLA.
Vaccination terms and definitions
You are considered fully vaccinated when:
- 14 days have passed since you received the second dose of a two-dose primary vaccine or a single-dose primary vaccine.
You are considered up to date on vaccinations when:
- You have received your primary vaccine series and the most recent booster dose recommended for you by by the CDC or the California Department of Public Health. For most people, that means receiving a bivalent booster dose.
You are currently eligible for a bivalent booster when:
- At least two months have passed since you received the second dose of a Pfizer–BioNTech, Moderna, Novavax or other WHO-approved two-dose vaccine (or monovalent booster), or at least two months have passed since you received the Johnson & Johnson vaccine (or monovalent booster). Recommendations may differ for those with compromised immunity.
Note: If you have been diagnosed with or treated for COVID-19, you may consider deferring your booster dose by 90 days since the date of your diagnosis or the last day of your treatment. If you defer, you will need to submit a declination form.
How and where to get vaccines and boosters
Available vaccines and boosters
The following COVID-19 vaccines and boosters have been approved or authorized for use in the United States:
- Pfizer–BioNTech (two-dose vaccine and bivalent booster)
- Moderna (two-dose vaccine and bivalent booster)
- Novavax (two-dose vaccine and monovalent booster)
- Johnson & Johnson (single-dose vaccine and monovalent booster; however, the CDC advises that the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and booster only be considered in limited situations, due to safety concerns)
The CDC currently recommends that those who are eligible receive a bivalent booster — either from Pfizer–BioNTech or Moderna — which targets the original virus and more recent omicron variants. The bivalent booster is recommended even for those who may have already received one or more monovalent boosters. Most people are eligible for the bivalent booster when:
- At least two months have passed since they received the second dose of the primary vaccination series of Pfizer–BioNTech, Moderna, Novavax or other two-dose vaccine approved by the FDA and/or WHO — or two months have passed since they received a monovalent booster.
- At least two months have passed since they received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson vaccine.
- Note: Those who are unable or unwilling to receive a bivalent booster may get a Novavax monovalent booster if they are at least 18, they completed their primary vaccine series at least six months ago and they have not received any other booster dose.
People who are moderately or severely immunocompromised have different recommendations for vaccines and boosters. For more information on vaccines and boosters, visit the CDC’s Vaccines for COVID-19 and COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters.
Where to get your vaccine and booster
Vaccines and boosters are available to members of the Bruin community through certain campus health facilities, state and local health agencies, and pharmacies.
Outside UCLA: The quickest option for most students and employees is to schedule a free off-campus vaccination or booster appointment through:
At UCLA: Vaccines and boosters may also available through UCLA, though wait times vary based on supply.
- UCLA employees
UCLA faculty and staff can schedule a vaccination through UCLA Occupational Health Services by calling 310-825-6771. Employees who are UCLA Health patients also have the option of booking an appointment through myUCLAhealth. (If you don’t have an account, view instructions on how to sign up. If you are unable to login or need help creating an account, contact the myUCLAhealth support line at 855-364-7052.)
- UCLA students
The Ashe Student Health & Wellness Center offers mRNA vaccines and boosters to students; information on how to schedule an appointment is available through the Ashe Center’s COVID-19 vaccine hub for UCLA students.
Getting vaccinated outside the U.S.
International students and faculty are encouraged to get vaccinated as early as possible, including in their home countries. However, only vaccines that have been granted emergency use authorization by the World Health Organization meet the university’s vaccine requirement. (The CDC keeps a list of WHO-authorized vaccines, and you can follow the status of vaccines through the WHO EUL/PQ evaluation process.)
Those who have been vaccinated outside the U.S. with a WHO-authorized vaccine can also receive an FDA-approved booster in the U.S.
If you can’t get an authorized vaccine
International students and faculty who cannot obtain a vaccine that has been approved or granted emergency use authorization by the WHO are encouraged to plan ahead and schedule an appointment for a COVID vaccine upon arrival in the United States.
Some people may have already received a COVID-19 vaccine that is not currently authorized in the U.S. While data on the safety and efficacy of receiving an authorized vaccine after getting a non-authorized one are not available, in some circumstances people who have partially completed a vaccination series with a non-authorized vaccine may be offered revaccination with an FDA/WHO–authorized one in the U.S.
Coming to campus
Students and faculty who have been unable to obtain an authorized vaccine in their home countries will still be allowed to come to campus, but they will be referred to a vaccine site to get vaccinated immediately.
Until they are fully vaccinated, they will be subject to the non-pharmaceutical interventions described in UC’s Appendix A: COVID-19 Prevention Strategies for unvaccinated individuals. Additional safety measures may be required, depending on the circumstances, by local health authorities.
If you have further questions about UCLA’s acceptance of international vaccines, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Confirm your vaccination and booster with UCLA
All students, faculty and staff who will be living, learning or working on campus or at other UCLA facilities are required to submit proof of their vaccination and boosters to UCLA. Individuals can do so online or use the UCLA Mobile app, which is available on the App Store and the Google Play Store.
Proof of vaccination and/or booster should be submitted between Dec. 31, 2022 and Feb. 1, 2023.
Students can submit proof by logging into the Arthur Ashe Student Health & Wellness Center’s electronic patient portal and clicking on the Medical Clearance section.
Staff and faculty can most easily confirm their status through UCLA’s UCLA COVID-19 Action Center by giving the university consent to check UCLA Health records and the California vaccination database. (Alternatively, you can upload an image of your CDC vaccination card or non-U.S. equivalent, or upload an official medical record from your health care provider.)
If you gave consent to check records for your initial vaccination, the survey should automatically update your booster status. If you didn’t, you can give consent for your booster. If your records are not found, the system will provide instructions on how to proceed.
- UCLA Health employees and those in clinical settings
UCLA Health personnel and those who work in clinical settings have been given information through COVID-19 protocols for health care settings on how to upload their proof.
- Non-matriculating students
UCLA Extension students, visiting students and those in executive education programs will receive guidance on how to verify their vaccination status through their program department.
- Pre-K–12 students
Students age who are eligible for vaccinations and boosters will receive information from the UCLA Lab School or the Geffen Academy at UCLA about notifying their program of their vaccination status.
Exception requests and opt-outs
In certain limited circumstances, students and employees may be granted a medical exception, an accommodation based on religious beliefs or disabilities, or a temporary deferral based on pregnancy or recent COVID-19 infection. In addition, if you received your initial vaccination series but wish to opt out of the booster requirement, you may do so.
Requests should be submitted between Dec. 31, 2022 and Feb. 1, 2023.
To request an exception, deferral or opt-out:
Students, including student employees, may submit requests through the UCLA COVID-19 Action Center.
Non-UCLA Health employees should use the UCLA COVID-19 Action Center to submit a request. Please visit the UCLA Insurance and Risk Management’s How to Request a COVID-19 Vaccine Exception page for details and guidance before initiating the process. Additional information on exemptions, accommodations and deferrals is available on IRM’s COVID-19 Related Accommodation or Workplace Adjustment Information page.
- UCLA Health employees
Information has been shared directly with UCLA Health personnel on how to submit exception requests.
Remote students and employees returning to campus
Returning students and employees
If you have been working completely remotely but are now returning to campus on a full-time or hybrid basis, you will need to update your work status through the UCLA COVID-19 Action Center (formerly the Symptom Monitoring Survey). If you have not yet done so, you will also need to upload proof of your vaccination and booster status or request an exception through the Action Center.
Fully remote students and employees
If you are newly remote and will not be coming to campus at any point during the term, you will need to update the UCLA COVID-19 Action Center (formerly the Symptom Monitoring Survey); indicate that you will be fully remote so that you’re not flagged for noncompliance with the vaccination policy. If you are fully remote but have already been vaccinated, you should upload proof of your vaccination through the Action Center.