The university will cover the cost of over-the-counter COVID-19 at-home test kits for employees and their families enrolled in a JHU health plan.
We are excited for the approach of the fall 2022 semester and anticipate a return to the most normal operations we have seen since the beginning of the pandemic.
COVID remains a serious challenge locally, nationally, and globally, but based on our experience in managing the pandemic within our community—and your diligence in following best practices to prevent the virus’s spread—we believe we can safely enact further loosening of our public health restrictions.
Among the policies:
- Routine asymptomatic testing is no longer required for anyone, including those with exceptions to the university’s vaccine mandate. We may reinstate testing requirements for particular groups if necessary to address outbreaks during the semester.
- Voluntary PCR-based saliva testing will continue through the fall semester, and free rapid test kits will continue to be available to all affiliates.
- Masking is no longer required in any campus spaces, including for individuals with exceptions to the vaccine mandate. Masking is highly effective at preventing the spread of COVID, and we may reinstate the mandate for certain groups or in certain circumstances if necessary.
- Individuals may choose to continue masking themselves based on their individual circumstances, and we will continue to provide free, high-quality masks for all affiliates.
- A full course of COVID baseline vaccinations and at least one booster shot is required of all JHU employees and students. Documentation must be provided through our Vaccine Management System. Our policy for granting medical and religious exceptions remains unchanged.
- Novavax has been added as an option for baseline vaccination, but we still require an mRNA (Pfizer or Moderna) booster shot as soon as individuals are eligible, regardless of their initial vaccine.
- Individuals arriving from overseas who received a vaccine authorized by the World Health Organization but not the U.S. Food and Drug Administration are immediately eligible for a booster (you may wait 28 days following your last dose).
Isolation and Leave
- If you have any COVID or flu-like symptoms, including fever, muscle or body aches, coughing, congestion or a runny nose, difficulty breathing, diarrhea, or fatigue, do not come to campus for class or work. Johns Hopkins faculty and staff who feel ill or are concerned about exposure to the coronavirus should continue to utilize the Johns Hopkins COVID-19 Call Center at 443-287-8500, seven days a week, between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m.
- Anyone testing positive should isolate for at least five days and until they are free of symptoms. Employees are still eligible for 10 days of COVID leave in addition to other forms of leave, which can be used for one or more infections over the course of the pandemic (up to 10 days total across all infections, not per infection).
Events, Gatherings, and Dining
- No restrictions are in place with regard to events and gatherings or serving food and beverages.
As has been the case since the beginning of the pandemic, these policies reflect close consultation with Johns Hopkins experts in public health and infectious disease, as well as compliance with state and local regulations. We will continue to closely monitor public health conditions, and if we need to reinstate control measures to protect the health and safety of our community and our neighbors, we will do so. However, based on the near-universal vaccination of our community as well as the proven effectiveness of measures such as the use of high-quality masks, we have every expectation that we will be able to complete the fall semester in person as planned.
- School of Medicine faculty, staff, students, and postdoctoral fellows will continue to follow Johns Hopkins Medicine policies.
- The Applied Physics Laboratory has its own policies for individuals on its property, but for APL staff members who work, teach, or attend classes at other JHU or JHM campuses, the mandates for each campus apply and can supersede APL guidelines.
Frequently Asked Questions
What do faculty, staff, and students need to know before coming to campus or to a JHU work location?
Masking is optional in classrooms, lab- and studio-based classes, university administrative spaces, research labs, public spaces, athletic facilities, and non-classroom communal spaces such as residence halls and libraries.
If you choose to wear a mask, the most effective types of face coverings are:
- N95 masks
- KN95 masks
- KF94 masks
- A combination of a cloth mask with a surgical mask
The university has obtained a large supply of N95 and KN95 masks to distribute; affiliates are entitled to two masks per week while supplies last. Masks can be picked up at asymptomatic testing locations on campus.
Vaccination and Booster Requirements
All eligible individuals affiliates must be vaccinated and boosted. Proof of vaccination/booster must be uploaded to the Johns Hopkins Vaccine Management System. Full vaccination including a booster is highly protective against severe illness and hospitalization. More information on the booster requirement
All JHU students, staff, and faculty may also utilize JHU testing sites for voluntary asymptomatic COVID testing. More information on testing locations and schedules
- No smoking or vaping
- Seasonal influenza vaccination is required for all affiliates and must be documented via the Vaccine Management System
Last updated: July 18, 2022 4:05pm
Can events be held?
Yes. Capacity limits on indoor events have been lifted and permission are no longer required. Food service is now allowed at indoor events. Physical distancing should still be maintained where feasible.
Last updated: April 18, 2022 9:59am
Do decisions about activities and health and safety protocols apply to buildings not located on the university’s main campuses?
All reopening plans and health and safety guidelines established by the university apply to people taking part in activities in all of its owned or leased locations.
Last updated: Dec 16, 2020 3:36pm
How does the university’s phased approach align with the state of Maryland and Baltimore City?
The university is guided by the types of activity allowed by both the state and the city along with its own evaluation of public health and medical advice from Johns Hopkins experts.
Last updated: June 22, 2021 12:47pm
Will Johns Hopkins provide vaccinations for JHU affiliates?
All Johns Hopkins affiliates in Maryland and Washington, D.C., can schedule a vaccination appointment through Johns Hopkins Medicine in MyChart. Johns Hopkins University is also hosting a series of clinics where faculty, staff, students, and contractors can receive a COVID-19 vaccine. Vaccinations are free and staff can use COVID-19 vaccine leave for time off while they receive or recover from the vaccination. Visit the COVID Vaccine Information site for updates.
Last updated: June 22, 2021 11:30am
Is there anything I need to do before I can schedule a vaccination at a Johns Hopkins physician office or JHM clinic?
If you don’t already have a MyChart account, you may receive an email asking you to activate your account. MyChart is a secure website and mobile app used by Johns Hopkins Medicine that can be used to schedule COVID-19 tests and vaccinations, if you need them in the future. If you have any questions about MyChart, please send an email to Testinginfo@jhu.edu.
Last updated: June 29, 2021 3:07pm
Why is Johns Hopkins University requiring the COVID vaccine?
Multiple vaccines have been demonstrated to provide high levels of protection against the COVID virus with reports of only minimal and brief side effects following administration. Ensuring that the overwhelming percentage of our community’s population is vaccinated will greatly reduce the risk of the virus’s spread on our campuses and will also protect our neighbors in Baltimore.
Johns Hopkins affiliates who are required to be vaccinated—and who were not vaccinated at a Johns Hopkins Medicine facility—can upload a photo of their COVID-19 vaccination record to the JHU Vaccine Management System. Affiliates may also submit an exception request in the VMS.
More information about submitting proof of vaccination to the VMS is available on the COVID Info website.
We encourage anyone interested in learning more about the science of the vaccine to visit Johns Hopkins Medicine’s COVID-19 Vaccine Safety website.
Last updated: July 12, 2021 2:52pm
Who is included in the vaccination mandate?
COVID-19 vaccination and booster are required for all JHU faculty, staff, postdoctoral fellows, and undergraduate and graduate students who work or study at a U.S.-based university campus or worksite. That includes:
- Members of collective bargaining units.
- Contractors who provide services to the university community and whose primary work location is on university properties located in Maryland or Washington, D.C., regardless of employer, except contractors or vendors whose presence at any JHU property is solely limited to the delivery of goods.
- Those who are doing business on behalf of the university, including individuals engaged in work-related travel.
Medical and religious exceptions will be made where appropriate.
School of Medicine affiliates will be governed by Johns Hopkins Health System vaccination policies.
“Worksite” includes locations that are not within the Homewood, East Baltimore, or Washington, DC campuses, such as but not limited to Keswick, Mt. Washington, etc.
Visitors who fall under the JHU Visitor Policy (i.e., visiting faculty, students, and scholars) are subject to the vaccination mandate.
Last updated: April 18, 2022 10:05am
Can I take time off to get vaccinated?
Yes. Faculty and staff can take up to two days off to be vaccinated and/or to recover from any side effects of the vaccine. See JHU HR Information Regarding Novel Coronavirus for details.
Last updated: June 30, 2021 12:41pm
Can I take time off to be tested?
Yes. You are permitted 30 minutes of time off for testing. (This does not need to be accounted for specifically in your E210 time sheet.)
Last updated: Aug 4, 2022 10:56am
How do the vaccination policies apply to faculty, students, or staff who may be returning to Johns Hopkins’ U.S.-based worksites from abroad?
If the affiliate was able to be vaccinated abroad with a non-FDA vaccine, those doses will be accepted by JHU. Email a copy of the vaccination documentation to VMS@jhu.edu and it will be uploaded to VMS for you. These affiliates should then get an mRNA booster (either Pfizer or Moderna) to be in compliance with JHU requirements. If the affiliate was not vaccinated abroad, they should start their COVID vaccine in the U.S.
Last updated: March 9, 2022 5:01pm
Does the mandate apply to university contractors?
The mandate includes non-employees who provide services to the university community and whose primary work location is on university properties located in Maryland or Washington, D.C., regardless of employer, with the exception of contractors or vendors whose presence at any JHU property is solely limited to the delivery of goods.
Last updated: June 9, 2021 12:53pm
Can I ask my colleagues/can they ask me about my vaccination status?
Managers and business partners have a business need-to-know in many situations, and are allowed to ask about vaccine status. However, it is not the same for colleagues/peers. Asking why an individual did not receive a vaccination may elicit private information about a disability and forcing a co-worker to disclose a disability could be noncompliant with the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). In other words, asking about status is only allowed if it is “job-related and consistent with business necessity,” which means that JHU and managers can ask their direct reports, as can HR business partners. However, peers/colleagues do not have a business necessity to know this. Therefore, while you may be allowed to ask your coworker, they have the right to refuse to tell you (and vice versa).
Last updated: Aug 4, 2022 10:57am
Who will know my status if I upload my vaccine information to the Vaccine Management System?
Your manager and divisional HR business partner will have access to see your status but will not know why you were granted an exception, if you have one. Managers and HR have permission to access this information for business-related reasons (such as when it is a requirement for working in person), to ensure that everyone is being compliant with the vaccination mandate or the masking and COVID testing requirements associated with an approved exception to the mandate.
Last updated: July 1, 2021 3:32pm
What are the COVID vaccination requirements for new JHU employees?
All JHU employees (faculty, staff, bargaining unit members, contractors, and postdoctoral fellows), including School of Medicine employees, are required to be vaccinated unless they have obtained an approved exception. JHU accepts both FDA-approved vaccines (Pfizer-BioNTech, Moderna, J&J/Janssen) and vaccines administered outside the U.S.; Johns Hopkins Medicine (including the JHU School of Medicine) only accepts FDA-authorized COVID vaccines. In addition, all JHU employees must receive an mRNA COVID booster (either Pfizer-BioNTech or Moderna) as soon as they are eligible. All vaccination documentation must be uploaded to the Vaccine Management System (VMS).
New employees may submit a request for a religious or medical exception to the vaccine requirement through the Vaccine Management System (VMS). The request must be submitted and approved within two weeks of the first day of employment.
If the new employee does not show progress toward compliance with the vaccination requirement, they will be out of compliance and should not be on-campus until they complete the required steps.
Last updated: March 9, 2022 5:02pm
Are there exceptions to the vaccination mandate?
Yes. Medical and religious exceptions will be made using the standard vaccine exemption process in the Vaccine Management System.
Last updated: Jan 12, 2022 2:53pm
What additional requirements are in place for faculty/staff with vaccination exceptions?
Testing requirements for affiliates who have not been vaccinated and/or have not received the booster, and who do not work at the School of Medicine, are:
- Vaccinated faculty and staff with the booster – no mandated testing
- ALL students, staff, and faculty who have not received the COVID vaccine and booster – 2x/week
Face-coverings continue to be required in indoor settings for faculty, staff, and students who are not fully vaccinated and boosted.
Last updated: March 18, 2022 7:02am
How to submit proof of vaccination or request an exception
How do I report my vaccination status?
All JHU affiliates must log in to the Vaccine Management System (VMS) to upload their flu, COVID, and COVID booster vaccination documentation.
Last updated: Jan 12, 2022 3:53pm
How will the university verify COVID vaccine records from other countries in other languages?
The university asks that vaccination documentation in other languages be translated (and certified) before they are uploaded to the forthcoming Vaccine Management System. All affiliates will electronically sign their submission to affirm that the information that they provided is accurate.
Last updated: June 22, 2021 12:15pm
How can JHU ask about my vaccine status? Isn’t this a HIPAA violation?
The U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) has confirmed that Federal EEO laws do not prevent an employer from requiring all employees physically entering the workplace to be vaccinated for COVID-19, so long as employers provide reasonable accommodations and other EEO considerations. The EEOC does not consider questions about vaccination status to be medical inquiries. HIPAA, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act, provides protections for patients’ confidential health information, and it covers what your health care provider can share with others—not employers and what they can ask for.
Last updated: June 23, 2021 5:01pm
What file types are acceptable for uploading proof of vaccination?
You can upload a JPEG, HEIC (iPhone), or PNG photo of your vaccination card or a PDF copy of a vaccination record.
Last updated: July 22, 2021 10:45am
What do I do if I lost my vaccination card?
If you were vaccinated in Maryland; West Virginia; or Washington, D.C., you can register and obtain your COVID-19 vaccination record from Maryland MyIR, a free website service that allows consumers to view and print copies of their official vaccination records directly from ImmuNet, Maryland’s immunization information system. Just register, download or print a copy of your certification of vaccination, and upload it into VMS.
If you were not vaccinated in Maryland, your doctor’s office or the location where you were vaccinated (e.g., CVS, Walgreens, etc.) should also have a record and you should reach out to them to get a copy. You may also be able to locate this on your patient portal or on the pharmacy website under prescription records or immunization record. You can find your state’s immunization records system at this link provided by the CDC.
Last updated: July 18, 2022 1:45pm
Where should I go for testing? Can I go to an off-campus pharmacy or do an at-home test?
For testing required by the university, you must come to one of several campus testing locations across JHU. All specimen analyses will be conducted by a laboratory that is located within the Johns Hopkins Hospital, and all results will be posted to MyChart. Off-campus tests at local pharmacies and at-home tests are not accepted.
JHU testing sites are also available at any time to all affiliates for elective, optional testing, but affiliates are also free to have elective testing done at locations not affiliated with the university.
Last updated: March 9, 2022 5:12pm
How do I make a testing appointment?
Appointments can be made through MyChart (also available as a mobile app from the Apple App Store or Google Play). You must have an active MyChart account to participate in the testing and vaccination programs at JHU. If you are having issues activating your MyChart, call 888-676-3433 or email Testinginfo@jhu.edu.
Also see: Testing locations and schedules
Last updated: April 6, 2022 5:03pm
Where is testing available and what are the hours of operation?
The university has established several campus locations across JHU for mandatory or voluntary testing. Detailed testing site information and hours of operation can be found on the Testing Locations + Schedules page on this website.
Last updated: Aug 9, 2021 4:00pm