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COVID-19 Vaccines

COVID-19 Vaccines

For patients or parents seeking a COVID-19 vaccine, visit the state's Vaccine Locator, or call the COVID-19 Information Hotline at 800.525.0127, then press #.

Information for health care professionals below.


Find more WSMA public service announcements on vaccines and other COVID-19 subjects on our Vimeo page.

Governor Mandates COVID-19 Vaccination for Health Care Workers

State employees and workers in private health care and long-term care settings will have until Oct. 18 to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 as a condition of employment under an emergency order issued by Gov. Jay Inslee. The mandate applies to all state agency worksites and employees, as well as health care employees in private sector health care and in long-term care settings, including nursing homes, adult family homes, assisted living, enhanced services facilities, residential treatment facilities, and other treatment facilities. (For definitions of "health care provider" and "health care setting" as pertains to the mandate, review pages 6 and 7 of the emergency order.)

This new requirement includes exemptions for individuals with legitimate medical reasons or sincerely held religious reasons. The exemptions do not include personal or philosophical objections. Review the emergency proclamation.

The Washington State Department of Health has provided guidance to help health care employees and employers move into compliance with this directive. Make sure you’re familiar with this information by downloading the Department of Health’s COVID-19 Vaccination Requirement FAQ for Health Providers, Workers, Settings, and Operators.

Implementation guidance for physician practices

The WSMA is helping physicians and practices across Washington implement this new mandate, regardless of practice type. Working with the law firm Montgomery Purdue PLLC, the WSMA has prepared guidance, including sample clinic policy and exemption forms and an on-demand vaccine mandate webinar Q&A.

Visit Implementing the COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate at Your Practice (sign-in required – to establish an account with the WSMA, click on ‘sign in’ at the top of the page) for more information on these resources.

Instilling COVID-19 Vaccine Confidence

The WSMA has joined the Washington State Department of Health to help promote confidence in, and uptake of, life-saving COVID-19 vaccines. Our members are the key to our success in this endeavor. By leveraging the trust patients have in their physicians, you can help ensure Washingtonians are receiving guidance based on sound science and good medical practice—and help counter the increasing barrage of misinformation circulating on- and offline.

The following resources can help you and your practice or organization in this effort.

Please reach out to your patients about the COVID-19 vaccine

Many patients have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine and its impact on their health. WSMA President Nathan Schlicher, MD, JD, sent a message to all physicians and physicians assistants in Washington urging them to reach out to their patients directly to talk to them about the COVID-19 vaccine.

Download the president's message, which includes a sample message you can send to your patients.

Remember: Many patients have questions about the COVID-19 vaccine. Please make yourself available to talk to your patients about the vaccine, regardless of your specialty.

Join the Power of Providers initiative

Washington’s Power of Providers COVID-19 vaccine initiative encourages physicians from all specialties and health care providers throughout the state to proactively reach out and talk to their patients about COVID-19 vaccination. You can commit to the POP initiative by agreeing to SEEK, ASK, VACCINATE, and EMPOWER (SAVE) your patients around COVID-19 vaccine.

  • SEEK: Seek your patients’ COVID-19 vaccination status.
  • ASK/EDUCATE: If your patient isn't vaccinated, ask them about the vaccine and offer education if they’re unsure.
  • VACCINATE: If your patient agrees to vaccination, provide them with a COVID-19 vaccine or a referral to a location that provides COVID-19 vaccination.
  • EMPOWER: Empower your patients to share their vaccination status with the community.

If you agree to do these four things at your practice, please fill out the online commitment form. The Department of Health will send you your certificate as well as optional buttons or stickers. Learn more about the POP initiative.

COVID-19 conversation guides for physicians and health care providers

The DOH offers a new provider toolkit featuring educational materials and information, including conversation guides, designed to instill confidence in COVID-19 vaccines. Find the conversation guides under Educational Materials then Resources for Providers.

The American College of Obstetrics and Gynecology offers a COVID-19 Vaccines and Pregnancy: Conversation Guide for Clinicians.

Key COVID-19 vaccine messages

The WSMA and the Washington State Department of Health are reinforcing these key COVID-19 vaccine messages:

  • Don’t hesitate, vaccinate.
  • All three COVID-19 vaccines are safe and very effective in protecting you and protecting others.
  • Talk to your doctor today about getting the shot.

“Don’t Hesitate, Vaccinate!” public service announcement

The WSMA and the DOH have produced a 45-second PSA featuring WSMA President Nathan Schlicher, MD, JD, MBA, called “Don't hesitate, just vaccinate!.” Share freely with your networks.

Messages from the WSMA president

Your WSMA president has authored or co-authored editorials urging public confidence in all three life-saving COVID-19 vaccines.

Countering hesitancy in patients and health care workers

WSMA members Bob Lutz, MD, from the Department of Health’s COVID-19 Response Team, and John H Vassall MD, physician executive for quality, safety & equity at Comagine Health, shared best practices for addressing Washingtonians' hesitancy and how to approach communities with significant health disparities in a recent webinar. View the archived webinar on the Department of Health website.

Professional Resources

Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment (CISA) Project

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends a 3rd dose of mRNA COVID-19 vaccine for those suffering from moderate to severe immunocompromising conditions. The CDC guidelines offer a list of the most common moderate to severe immunocompromising conditions, but also leave discretion to the patient and physician to ensure each case is reviewed based on individual needs. CDC’s Clinical Immunization Safety Assessment (CISA) Project can assist physicians in developing the best plan for their patients. If physicians have questions about specific cases in relation to whether or not they should receive the vaccine or if their patient is possibility experiencing side-effects to the vaccine, they can consult CISA for clinical consultation.

Enroll in the COVID-19 Vaccination Program

Practice, clinics, and other facilities interested in administering COVID-19 vaccine must enroll in the federal COVID-19 Vaccination Program. Visit the DOH website for details. For questions about the enrollment process or for technical assistance, please contact COVID.vaccine@doh.wa.gov.

Volunteers needed

The Washington State Department of Health, in partnership with our health profession boards and commissions, has made it easier for retired health care workers or those with inactive licenses to get back into the workforce and help administer the COVID-19 vaccine. On Jan. 31, Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah signed the Public Readiness and Emergency Preparedness Act (PREP Act) authorization, allowing workers with expired or inactive licenses to administer COVID-19 vaccines under certain circumstances.

To participate, health care workers must first register WAserv.org. Check the Department of Health's health care provider resource page for a registration guide, which provides step-by-step instructions for navigating WAserv.

COVID-19 vaccine distribution and prioritization

Everyone 12 and older are eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine. The state’s phased eligibility approach has helped ensure those most vulnerable were the first to be vaccinated, including older adults, those in long term care facilities, critical health care workers, and more.

Details on the state's vaccine distribution planning can be found on the DOH COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution webpage.

COVID-19 Scientific Safety Review Workgroup

The COVID-19 Scientific Safety Review Workgroup, which includes Washington, Oregon, Nevada, Colorado, and California, reviews the safety and efficacy of COVID-19 vaccines when approved by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration. State officials believe this added layer of independent expert review will help build confidence in the vaccine. Washington's representatives on the work group include Edgar Marcus, MD, University of Washington, and John Dunn, MD, Kaiser Permanente Washington.

COVID-19 vaccine clinical and safety information

COVID-19 vaccination training

COVID-19 vaccine information

COVID-19 Vaccine News

 
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