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What to know about COVID-19 vaccines in Washington Wednesday

Here's what you need to know about COVID-19 vaccines in Washington state on Wednesday, April 28.

WSU requires students, staff to be vaccinated for COVID by fall 2021

Washington State University announced Wednesday that students and staff will be required to get vaccinated for COVID-19 for the fall 2021 semester.

According to the university, students and staff will have to provide proof of the COVID-19 vaccination to engage in activities at a WSU campus or location. All students living in university-owned housing will need to provide proof of vaccination, or approved exemption, by Aug. 6, 2021. For students who have been given exemptions, the university said it may modify housing assignments as it deems necessary. Read more

Health and Human Service secretary tours Lumen Field vaccination site

Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra joined Seattle Mayor Jenny Durkan and King County Executive Dow Constantine for a tour of the COVID-19 vaccination site at the Lumen Field Event Center Wednesday.

Becerra traveled to Seattle to meet with tribal leaders, community partners, and local officials about the progress the Biden-Harris administration has made in its first 100 days.

Vaccinated adults 65 and older are 9 times less likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19

People over the age of 65 who are vaccinated are 9.7 times less likely to be hospitalized with COVID-19 complications than unvaccinated adults of the same age, according to the Washington State Department of Health.

Washington State Secretary of Health Dr. Umair Shah shared the statistic at a press briefing Wednesday. Shah asked DOH staff to compare hospital admission rates between vaccinated and unvaccinated adults over 65. 

"I think this really underscores why vaccines work," Shah said.

PLU to require COVID-19 vaccinations for students returning to campus

Pacific Lutheran University (PLU) announced all students, including undergraduate and graduate, will be required to be fully vaccinated before arriving on campus for the fall semester. 

PLU said there will be “case by case exceptions allowed only for medical or religious reasons.”The university said it is continuing to monitor “federal and state guidance for employer regulations” about employee vaccinations, but encouraged employees to get vaccinated.

PLU also announced it would soon host vaccination clinics on campus with “early access appointments” for PLU community members. 

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What activities CDC says are (and aren't) safe without masks for fully vaccinated

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said Tuesday that Americans who are fully vaccinated can start doing many things that they had stopped doing because of the pandemic. 

As part of Tuesday's updated guidance, U.S. health officials said fully vaccinated Americans don't need to wear masks outdoors anymore unless they are in a big crowd of strangers, and those who are unvaccinated can go without a face covering outside in some cases, too.

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BioNTech chief: Europe will reach herd immunity by August

Europe can achieve herd immunity against the coronavirus within three to four months, the head of German pharmaceutical company BioNTech, which developed the first widely approved COVID-19 vaccine with U.S. partner Pfizer, said Wednesday.

While the exact threshold required to reach that critical level of immunization remains a matter of debate, experts say a level above 70% would significantly disrupt transmission of the coronavirus within a population.

Read more

How to get a COVID-19 vaccine in Washington 

Everyone in Washington state aged 16 and over is eligible for the vaccine.

Find a list of vaccine providers on the state's Vaccinate WA page and information on how to make an appointment.

Pfizer is the only vaccine approved for people 16 and 17 years old, and the state is working to update its Vaccine Locator with information about which vaccine is offered at each location.

Several health care providers allow people to join waiting lists for the vaccine, and they will contact you when doses are available. Join the waiting list for:

LIST: Mass COVID-19 vaccine sites in western Washington