Employee Responsibilities  

Employees who are not fully vaccinated or those who to decline to provide their  vaccination status will be subject to weekly COVID-19 screening testing and will also be  subject to any other safety protocols when required based on CDC or other applicable  guidance such as wearing a face mask and practice physical distancing. 

Employees who are required to enter VACO facilities or employees who do not work at  a Federal facility but who interact in person with members of the public as part of  their job duties and are not fully vaccinated must comply with the following procedures.  According to guidance from the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force on testing, self-test  kits are acceptable as long as the tests are not both self-administered and self-read by  the employee. To address these requirements, the employee’s supervisor or designee  must observe, either in-person or virtually, the self-administration of the test or the  reading of the test result. The following protocols (with the exception of the need to  have the test observed) should also be utilized by fully vaccinated employees who are undergoing diagnostic testing (i.e., showing symptoms or exposed to or in close contact  to an individual with COVID-19).  

  • Employees must contact their supervisor with advance notice to obtain a self-test  kit.  
  • Supervisors must notify the VACO Mailroom via e-mail  
  • (VACOCovidtestkit@va.gov) with at least one day advance notice to request a  self-test kit for an employee. 
  • Employees may pick-up a self-test kit from the VACO mailroom (located in room  B-12 in 810 Vermont Avenue) Monday – Friday during the hours of 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m. 
  • Employees that are not fully vaccinated and are utilizing the screening testing are  not permitted to both self-administer the test and self-read the test results  according to the Safer Federal Workforce Task Force; testing must be observed  by the agency. The method of observation is up to the discretion of each Administration / Staff Office.  
  • Room A-27A in 810 Vermont Avenue will be open and available to conduct  testing if so desired by the employee and observer. Upon exiting the elevator on  A level, directional signs are posted to A-27A.  
  • Employees must follow the instructions on the self-test kit and confirm a clear  result. If the test kit shows an “unclear result”, the employee shall request  another kit from their supervisor and complete another test.
  • Employees must immediately advise their supervisor if they receive a “positive” result and should leave the workplace immediately to avoid  exposing other occupants to the virus (see section below “Positive test  results”). 
  • Employees may request a reasonable accommodation to testing. A request for  reasonable accommodation should be submitted to the reasonable  accommodation coordinator. 
  • Employees who refuse to submit to the COVID-19 testing or other safety  protocols when required, absent a reasonable accommodation, will be subject to  administrative action up to and including removal from Federal service.  
  • It is acceptable for an employee to provide their supervisor with results from a third party in lieu of requesting and using a self-test kit obtained from the mailroom. Other  methods include 1) in-store or drive-through point-of-care testing such as at pharmacies  or 2) swab-testing capabilities that enable an individual to collect the specimen—using a  self-collection kit—and drop it off at a designated collection location or ship it to a  laboratory. If either of these methods are utilized, the outside source must be  authorized by the Food and Drug Administration to detect current infection. 
  • If an employee undergoes COVID-19 testing outside of VA, the employee must speak  with their supervisor prior to obtaining a test regarding the amount of time approved to  travel to and take the test and any costs that may be reimbursed. 

Supervisor Responsibilities 

  • Supervisors are responsible for informing their employees required to be on-site  in VACO about the weekly screening testing requirement.  
  • Supervisors must ensure weekly testing is conducted when required under CDC  and other applicable guidance until such time that the employee has submitted  proof that they are fully vaccinated. 
  • If an employee tests positive for COVID-19 or has been exposed to or in contact  with an individual with COVID-19, the supervisor will immediately report the  incident to their on-duty Administration/Staff Office Watch Officer or designated  POC and the organization’s space liaison so cleaning and disinfecting activities  may commence immediately. Supervisors should also consult and follow the  guidance in the OCHCO Bulletin: Updated Guidance on Quarantine and Isolation  and Available Leave Options During COVID-19.
  • Supervisors must immediately report to their senior leadership when an  employee reports a “positive” result from a COVID-19 test to ensure proper  communications is initiated. • Supervisors will track and maintain the date of testing for each employee in LEAF  (a VA information technology system). This information must be protected in  accordance with the law and agency policy. 


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