Proof of Vaccination Survey
Earlier this month, the White House announced a six-pronged plan to advance the fight against COVID-19. It included an Executive Order (E.O.), E. O. 14043, that stated that Federal employees need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by November 22, 2021. FSIS realizes this is a significant step and understands that it is critical to help contain the global pandemic, reduce infection rates, and keep everyone safe. All decisions that are being made prioritize the health and wellness of employees, contractors, visitors, and the broader public. Moreover, the Administration is committed to letting the policy follow the science.
The Delta variant accounts for 99%+ of all new COVID-19 cases in the country, which is more infectious than earlier variants. Vaccinations have been shown to protect against severe illness brought on by the Delta variant. To put things in perspective, there have been more than 680,000 deaths and over 42 million people impacted by COVID-19 in the United States to date. This is more than the flu pandemic in 1918, making COVID-19 the deadliest pandemic in our country’s history. At that time, the nation had very few public health tools to address the flu pandemic. Now, the nation has very effective vaccines to combat COVID-19 which are safe and have met rigorous scientific standards. The importance of vaccines for saving lives cannot be overemphasized, especially since 95% of people hospitalized for COVID-19 are not vaccinated.
III. NEW SURVEY REQUIREMENTS
A. As a result of this new Executive Order, USDA is now required to collect proof of vaccination and more detailed information about each employee’s vaccination status via this survey: Proof of Vaccination by USDA Employees. Everyone is required to complete it no later than November 9, 2021.
B. Employees are to upload into the survey one of the following as proof of vaccination:
- A copy of the record of immunization from a health care provider or pharmacy;
- A copy of the COVID-19 Vaccination Record Card;
- A copy of medical records documenting the vaccination;
- A copy of immunization records from a public health or state immunization information system; or
- A copy of any other official documentation containing required data points that include: type of vaccine administered, dates of administration, and the name of the health care professionals or clinic sites administering the vaccines.
C. For employees who still need to be vaccinated, below are interim deadlines that will ensure that they are two weeks from their last dose and thus, considered fully vaccinated by the November 22nd deadline.
- October 11: First dose deadline (Moderna COVID-19 vaccine);
- October 18: First dose deadline (Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine);
- November 8: Second dose deadline (Moderna and Pfizer vaccine);
- November 8: First (only) dose deadline (Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine); and
- November 22: Federal employees must be fully vaccinated.
D. Visit Vaccines.gov to find a location that offers COVID-19 vaccines near you and learn more about the benefits of vaccinations here.
E. By October 18, 2021, employees have the right to request an accommodation. For those interested in seeking a religious accommodation or a reasonable accommodation (for medical reasons), request documents can be obtained by emailing FSISHR1@usda.gov with “reasonable accommodation” or “religious accommodation” in the subject line. Instructions for submitting the requests will be provided to employees along with the request documents. Completed request documents may be submitted at this time. Once FSIS receives additional guidance from USDA, the Agency will process the requests, and both supervisors and employees will be provided with the additional information.
Refer questions about this notice to the FSIS Feedback mailbox FSISFeedback@usda.gov.
Accommodations contact: call 1-877-FSIS-HR1 (1-877-374-7471) or email FSISHR1@usda.gov with “reasonable accommodation” or “religious accommodation” in the subject line.
Office of Policy and Program Development