9/25: Friday Briefing

By rebecca No comments


  • The governor has extended a legislature-approved residency waiver for graduate students studying at state institutions.
    • Due to COVID, students may not be able to travel to campus but are still continuing their studies remotely.
    • The waiver exempts these students from residing in Washington during their fall quarter studies.
  • The insurance commissioner’s emergency order that requires health insurers to waive copays and deductibles for any consumer requiring coronavirus testing is again extended until Oct. 25.
    • Insurers must also continue allow a one-time early refill for prescription drugs, and must suspend any prior authorization requirements for treatment or testing of COVID-19.
  • The governor has set new requirements for all commercial airports operating in the state, and issued recommendations for airlines.
    • Face coverings are required in all public areas of all airports
    • Physical distancing reminders must be posted
    • Protective barriers must separate travelers from airport workers
    • high-touch surfaces in public areas must be disinfected with medical-grade cleaning products in consultation with local health districts.
    • Hand sanitizing stations must be made available throughout public areas of airport terminals
    • Airport vendors and businesses must follow all state and county health agency safety requirements and should encourage cashless payment systems
    • Airlines are strongly encouraged to establish health screening questionnaires for passengers regarding potential COVID-19 exposure or symptoms, and to require passengers abide by face covering and physical distancing requirements in order to be issued a boarding pass.
    • Delta Air Lines, Alaska Airlines and the Port of Seattle announced additional health and safety protocols.


  • Tacoma Public Schools have reversed a decision that would have brought some students back to campus next week, because of needing more time to prepare personal protective equipment for school staff.
    • Until further notice, all Tacoma Public Schools students will continue with remote instruction. on Thursday students will not return to the classroom next Monday.


  • There are numerous free testing sites in our region:
  • For Pierce County locations, including next week’s free mobile testing events, visit TPCHD.org/covidtest
  • Community Health Care, with locations in Tacoma, Spanaway, and Lakewood, is offering testing for COVID-19, even if you are not a Community Health Care patient.
    • Call (253) 722-2161 for a Tele-Health Screening Appointment, and if the screening visit indicates you need a test, a Drive Thru Test will be scheduled.
  • The University of Washington is unveiling its system-wide testing programing for all staff, faculty, and students tomorrow, Sept 24th.
    • Participants can voluntarily enroll in the Husky Coronavirus Testing program if they have a UW NetID and either work or attend classes at least once per month and live with 20 miles of UW Bothell, UW Seattle, or UW Tacoma.
    • In-person testing sites will be located at the UW Club building and the ground floor of the Odegaard Undergraduate Library building on the Seattle campus by appointment only
    • Testing for UW Bothell, UW Tacoma and South Lake Union will be conducted through self-test kits delivered to participants.
    • Those who work or attend classes remotely, or who have health or mobility limitations preventing them from visiting a test center, may be offered a mail-in home test kit.
    • UW Students, faculty, and staff can enroll by following links at Washington.edu/coronavirus.
  • Flu vaccines are now widely available at pharmacies and most major hospital and clinic systems.
    • Flu vaccinations are recommended by all local, state, and federal health agencies to minimize flu transmission and severity, for almost all individuals older than 6 months.
    • The Tacoma Pierce County Health Department hosts free, drive-thru flu vaccination events now through early December.
    • Times and locations can be found at TPCHD.org/flu or by calling