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Where is vaccination or testing required for workers?

Last Updated: 09/15/2021

New Jersey has announced that all workers in preschool to Grade 12 schools, all workers in certain health care facilities and high-risk congregate settings, all workers at state agencies, authorities, and colleges and universities and all child care workers will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 or be subject to COVID-19 testing at minimum one to two times per week.

The federal government has announced that all workers at most health care settings, all federal executive branch employees, and all federal contractors will be required to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 and that all workers at businesses with 100 or more employees will be required to be fully vaccinated or subject to weekly COVID-19 testing.

  • As of September 7th, 2021, all workers in certain state and private health care facilities and high-risk congregate settings are required to be fully vaccinated or subject to testing.
  • By October 18th, 2021, all workers in preschool through Grade 12 schools will be required to be fully vaccinated or subject to testing.
  • By October 18th, 2021, all workers at state agencies, authorities, and colleges and universities will be required to be fully vaccinated or subject to testing.
  • By November 1st, 2021, all workers in all child care facilities will be required to be fully vaccinated or subject to ongoing weekly testing.
  • The federal government has announced plans to require vaccination for workers in most health care settings, federal executive branch employees, and all federal contractors and to require vaccination or testing for all workers at businesses with 100 or more employees. Additional details will be added to this article when available.

Health Care Facilities and High-Risk Congregate Settings

All full and part-time employees, contractors, and other individuals who work in covered facilities and settings, including individuals providing operational, custodial, or administrative support, are required to be fully vaccinated or submit to testing. Those facilities and settings include:

  • Acute, pediatric, inpatient rehabilitation, and psychiatric hospitals, including specialty hospitals, and ambulatory surgical centers
  • Long-term care facilities, including the state Veterans Homes
  • Intermediate care facilities, including the state developmental centers
  • Residential detox, short term and long term residential substance abuse disorder treatment facilities
  • Clinic-based settings like ambulatory care, urgent care clinics, dialysis centers, Federally Qualified Health Centers, family planning sites, and Opioid Treatment Programs
  • Community-based healthcare settings including Program of All-inclusive Care for the Elderly, and pediatric and adult medical day care programs
  • Licensed home health agencies and registered health care service firms operating within the State
  • State and county correctional facilities
  • Secure care facilities operated by the Juvenile Justice Commission
  • Licensed community residences for individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) and traumatic brain injury (TBI)
  • Licensed community residences for adults with mental illness; and
  • Certified day programs for individuals with IDD and TBI

If workers in the facility or setting have not submitted proof that they are fully vaccinated against COVID-19, they are required to submit to a minimum once to twice weekly testing.

Private facilities are strongly encouraged to consider instituting requirements above and beyond the baseline that will be required by the State.

At the federal level, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is taking action to require COVID-19 vaccinations for workers in most health care settings that receive Medicare or Medicaid reimbursement, including but not limited to hospitals, dialysis facilities, ambulatory surgical settings, and home health agencies. Additional details will be added to this article when available.

Schools

All part-time and full-time individuals, employed by all public, private, and parochial preschool programs and elementary and secondary schools, including charter and renaissance schools, are required to be fully vaccinated or submit to testing by October 18th, 2021. Covered individuals include:

  • Administrators,
  • Teachers,
  • Educational support professionals,
  • Individuals providing food, custodial, and administrative support services,
  • Substitute teachers, whether employed directly by a school or otherwise contracted, and,
  • Contractors, providers, and any other individuals performing work in a school whose job duties require them to make regular visits, including volunteers.

Child Care Facilities

All part-time and full-time staff at child care centersare required to be fully vaccinated or submit to testing by November 1st, 2021. Impacted child care personnel include:

  • Administrators,
  • Teachers,
  • Individuals providing food, custodial, and administrative support services, and
  • Contractors, providers, and any other individuals performing work in child care centers whose job duties require them to make regular visits, including volunteers.

State and Federal Government

All workers at state agencies, authorities, and public colleges and universities, are required to be fully vaccinated or submit to testing by October 18th, 2021.

At the federal level, the White House has announced that all federal executive branch workers and all employees of contractors that do business with the federal government must be vaccinated. Additional details will be added to this article when available.

Private Employers with 100+ Employees

At the federal level, the Department of Labor's Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) is developing a rule that will require all employers with 100 or more employees to ensure their workforce is fully vaccinated. Additional details will be added to this article when available.

Vaccine and Testing Details

Workers are considered "fully vaccinated" for COVID-19 two weeks or more after they have received the second dose in a two-dose series or two weeks or more after they have received a single-dose vaccine. Vaccines must be currently authorized for emergency use or approved by the FDA or the WHO.

Workers can show proof of full vaccination by presenting:

  • the CDC COVID-19 vaccination card issued at the vaccination site, or an electronic or physical copy;
  • the official record from the New Jersey Immunization Information System (NJISS) or other immunization register
  • a record from a health care provider's portal or medical record system on official letterhead signed by a licensed physician, nurse practitioner, physician's assistance, registered nurse, or pharmacist;
  • a military immunization or health record from the United States Armed Forces; or
  • Docket mobile phone application record or any state-specific application that produces a digital health record.

Both antigen and molecular tests are acceptable for weekly testing.

State and federal requirements do not impact an employer's ability to impose more stringent vaccination or testing requirements on workers, including any requirement for more frequent testing, for testing of both vaccinated and unvaccinated staff, and for mandatory vaccinations without a testing alternative.

Source: Executive Order No. 252; Executive Order No. 253; Executive Order No. 264