As discussed in our prior alert, most federal contractors will soon see a new Federal Acquisition Regulation (“FAR”) clause 52.223-99 mandating COVID-19 vaccinations and safety protocols included in their future federal solicitations and contracts. In addition, contracting officers have been “strongly encouraged” to seek to bilaterally modify existing contracts to incorporate the clause in existing contracts and orders. The following is a brief overview of the recently updated Frequently Asked Questions (“FAQ”) guidance in implementing and enforcing the COVID-19 vaccination requirements.
Updated Vaccination Requirements and Safety Protocol Guidance
On Oct. 21, the Safer Federal Work Force Task Force released new and updated guidance to Federal Agencies and covered contractors for the implementation of Executive Order 14042.
The revised FAQs cover the COVID-19 vaccination tracking requirements, as well as application of the vaccination requirement to covered employees, which includes:
Contractor policies for delaying vaccination must require that employees become fully vaccinated promptly after clinical considerations no longer recommend delay. If vaccination is delayed, the employees not fully vaccinated must follow applicable masking and physical distancing protocols.