You can spread COVID-19 without having symptoms, which is why getting vaccinated is critically important.
COVID-19 spreads mainly through respiratory droplets and particles expelled when an infected person breathes, coughs, sneezes, speaks or sings while in close contact with another person.
Additionally, these small droplets and particles linger in the air and infect people who are more than 6 feet away. This is more likely to happen in poorly ventilated indoor spaces, particularly when the infected person is exercising, singing or doing other activity that causes them to breathe heavily.
If you are not vaccinated, diligently follow the three Ws — wearing masks, watching our physical distances and washing our hands — and avoiding crowded indoor spaces.
All Washington residents age 6 months and up are now eligible to be vaccinated at no cost. Appointments available at UW Medicine and many other providers. Learn more.
What do I do if I feel sick?
If you are sick with any potential illness, you must stay home.
The most common symptoms of COVID-19 infection are fever, cough and shortness of breath. The CDC also maintains a list of possible COVID-19 symptoms that you should review. If you have symptoms of COVID-19, you need to take additional steps to take care of yourself and protect your loved ones:
Contact your healthcare provider and ask if you should be tested for COVID-19. UW Tacoma students can also contact Franciscan Prompt Care at St. Joseph. To protect the health of others, do NOT visit a doctor’s office, urgent care clinic or other health facility unless you’ve talked with them in advance about possibly having COVID-19.
Notify the COVID-19 Response & Prevention Team:email@example.com or 206-616-3344 as soon as your healthcare provider confirms or suspects COVID-19.
Follow public health guidelines to help you recover and protect loved ones from getting sick. These actions include staying home and physically separate from anyone who lives with you, wearing a face covering if you have to be around people, and being stringent about hygiene. You can learn more from Tacoma-Pierce County Public Health and the Washington State Department of Health.
I feel anxious about COVID-19. What can I do?
This is can be a stressful, difficult time for everyone. You don’t have to go through it alone.
Washington residents can also call or text Washington Listens at 1-833-681-0211, M–F from 9 a.m.–9 p.m. and weekends from 9 a.m.–6 p.m. Language access services are available, and TTY can be accessed by dialing 7-1-1 or preferred method.
The Husky Coronavirus Testing program, a voluntary research study has self-test kits available. You can pick up or drop off kits at the Testing Desk on the ground floor of TPS. During Autumn Quarter 2022, the desk is open:
What does the UW do when a member of our community has confirmed COVID-19?
We depend on people to report when they have confirmed or suspected COVID-19. Peoples’ identities are closely protected and disclosed only on a need-to-know basis, such as a public health response, HR actions, and unit management. Once we receive someone’s report, we take the following steps to protect the health and safety of our campus communities:
We document the person’s symptoms, where they’ve spent time on campus recently and any close contacts, such as anyone who was within 6 feet of the person for a cumulative total of at least 15 minutes during a 24-hour period (even if both people wore masks).
We conduct a risk assessment, which helps us decide on a specific action plan. Our actions may include any or all of the following:
We help the person understand how to take care of themselves and others by staying home and physically apart from other people.
If needed, we notify the person’s academic and/or work unit and provide information about actions that will be taken to prevent the virus’s spread.
We notify people who were in close contact with the person as far back as 48 hours before they developed symptoms.
If the person spent time on campus recently, we evaluate and coordinate enhanced cleaning and disinfection of those areas following CDC guidelines.
If the person spent time in a work space on campus recently, we notify coworkers and others who have also been in that space and share information about steps we’re taking to prevent the virus’s spread.
What options are there for students who don't have access to technology at home?
Currently enrolled students may borrow laptops, wifi hotspots and other technology by contacting the UW Tacoma IT Helpdesk.
Tuition, Fees and Financial Aid
What if I am experiencing financial hardship?
Students experiencing hardship are encouraged to connect with the UW Tacoma Office of Student Financial Aid. Emergency aid is available to help enrolled students with unexpected needs such as emergency medical costs, housing expenses, family emergencies, loss of income, and other situations.
How is money from the federal CARES Act (Higher Education Emergency Relief Fund) being distributed?
The Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act was passed by Congress and signed into law to provide economic relief from COVID-19. One section of the CARES Act established the Higher Education Emergency Relief fund and sent money to schools to use for emergency financial aid grants to students for expenses related to the disruption of campus operations due to the pandemic. For more information about the UW disbursement of these funds, see the UW CARES Act FAQ.
Phishing emails are being received regarding CARES funding, do not provide personal information like your Social Security number or bank account information. You should only provide or update personal information through MyUW. The UW will use the information you have provided in MyUW to communicate with you or disburse aid to you.