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Research Re-engagement

Last Updated: July 30, 2021

All students, faculty and staff on all three campuses of the University of Michigan are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 and must submit their vaccination information before the start of the fall term. The announcement comes as the rate of COVID-19 infections increases across the country, particularly in states and sub-populations with the lowest vaccination rates and as the predominant delta variant proves to be much more infectious. Learn more


  1. Study teams are responsible for adhering to the policies of the nation, state, county, city, and organization (i.e., Department, unit, Michigan Medicine) in which the research is occurring. When policies of the local setting in which the research is being conducted are inconsistent with the policies outlined in the University of Michigan COVID-19 Preparedness and Response Plan, the policy that provides the greatest COVID risk mitigation is the one that must be applied. Michigan Medicine teams must adhere to all of the most up-to-date policies of Michigan Medicine (i.e,. Masking requirements).

  2. Any use of ResponsiBLUE daily health screening survey for screening research participants or those accompanying them should be modified to clarify that the instructions for positive responses do not apply to individuals not affiliated with U-M. Instead, these individuals should be encouraged to seek guidance from their health care provider. 

  3. If a research participant has had a recent COVID-19 diagnosis or screens positive on any university-required screening (ResponsiBLUE daily health screening survey), with the exception of studies related to COVID specifically, the study visit must be rescheduled. If the individuals accompanying the participant to the study visit have a recent COVID-19 diagnosis or screens positive on any university-required screening (ResponsiBLUE daily health screening survey), the individuals may not accompany the participant to the study visit, or the study visit must be rescheduled.


  1. I am a PI, so can I suggest that my lab team review the attestation?

    1. Yes. You can provide them with the necessary information, but supervisors and PIs cannot require their employees to be vaccinated or attest to vaccination.

  2. How does the vaccine attestation process impact human research activity?

    1. The vaccine attestation process does not apply to researchers while working with study participants as part of their human subjects activity, which requires that researchers continue wearing a face covering and social distance.

  3. I am not vaccinated, so do I have to provide any information to my PI or supervisor?

    1. If you are not vaccinated, you must continue to wear a face covering and socially distance. No other action is necessary at this time.

  4. I am vaccinated, but I feel more comfortable wearing a face covering. Is this OK?

    1. Yes. Employees may choose to wear a face covering for a multitude of reasons beyond their vaccination status.

  5. I am not vaccinated. When I fill out my ResponsiBLUE app to gain entry into a university building, will I still receive a green checkmark?

    1. Yes, the green checkmark needed to gain entry into a university building is separate from the green checkmark generated as part of the online vaccine attestation form.

  6. Does the PI of a lab have responsibility with regard to knowing vaccination status of members of the lab, and assuring that only non-vaccinated individuals are unmasked and not keeping distancing?

    1. Employees are encouraged to share their verification email with their supervisors. Supervisors may  ask their employees to see their green verification check.

  7. Can a PI require masks and distancing of vaccinated individuals in their labs?

    1. No.

  8. How does the vaccine attestation process affect close proximity training?

    1. If lab members generate a green checkmark on the ResponsiBLUE app based on their vaccine attestation, they can proceed with close proximity training without the need for social distancing and face coverings.

  9. Are study participants that are fully vaccinated required to wear a face-covering when interacting with university researchers?

    1. Study teams must conduct daily health screening questions with participants (such as the guest version of the ResponsiBLUE app), which includes asking about vaccination status. The app will provide instructions for visitors to U-M property. If the study interaction does not take place on U-M property, then local guidance for mask requirements should be followed accordingly for participants based on their vaccination status.  

  10. What if the study participant does not want to disclose whether they are vaccinated?

    1. Individuals who choose not to disclose their vaccination status must follow the local guidance for unvaccinated individuals.

  11. Do I have to request proof of vaccination status?

    1. No. Researchers cannot ask participants for proof of vaccination. 


For questions related to human research during COVID-19, please contact the U-M Human Research Reactivation Committee.