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Flu & COVID-19 Information

Updated: May 17, 2023

Flu and COVID

Flu vaccinations are available for all veterans during their regularly scheduled appointments at all VA Puget Sound facilities. COVID-19 Bivalent boosters can be scheduled for the Seattle campus through primary care and available at the American Lake campus during regularly scheduled primary & specialty clinic appointments. For those receiving care at one of our Community Clinics, please contact your local clinic for their most updated information.


COVID-19 self-screening at our facilities is required for Veterans and visitors.  You have three ways to complete the screening:

1. Text ‘SCREEN’ to 53079 to receive a link to

2. Scan the QR code to go to

Self-screening QR code

3. Ask yourself the questions below:

Do you have or have you experienced any of the following  COVID-19 symptoms today or in the
past 24 hours?

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough or Sore throat
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Loss of taste or smell
  • Muscle aches or body aches
  • Runny nose or congestion
  • Nausea, vomiting or diarrhea

In the last 14 days, have you tested positive for COVID-19 or been in close contact with someone who has COVID-19?

If you answered YES to any of these questions or are not sure, please consider returning home and notifying your care team or let a VA staff member know right away on check-in. If you feel unwell or were on your way to the Emergency Department, please continue to the Emergency Department.

If you answered NO to all questions, please proceed.

Self-screening available except in specialized care areas


Starting May 11, 2023, we will begin introducing “Masks Optional Zones” within our Seattle and American Lake campuses.  In our designated “Masks Optional Zones” you are welcome to take off or keep on! Please be kind to those who choose to wear one. Masks continue to be required in the areas to, from and around these designated zones. 

  • Seattle Campus: Canteen, Building 1 - 6th and 7th floors, Buildings 8, 11, 13, 23, 34, and 101 – designated area 3rd floor
  • American Lake Campus: Canteen

These initial “Masks Optional Zones” were chosen because these areas are removed from direct clinical care and have been determined to be lower risk, during periods of moderate or low transmission.   

Visitation and screening policy

  • All visitors must always wear a medical grade mask at our facilities, except in Masks Optional designated zones (if you don’t have one, we will provide you with one).
  • Visitors who have pending COVID test results due to symptom or exposure are asked to not come to the facility.
  • Visitors who are in quarantine or isolation, or who have been in close contact with anyone who has tested positive for COVID in the last 14 days are also asked to stay home.
  • Emergency Room
    • 1 visitor at a time.
    • Children allowed on a case-by-case basis per Emergency Room leadership.
    • Must be COVID-19 negative.
    • Must remain in the treatment room.
  • Inpatient
    • No children under 18-years-old.
    • Visitation hours are Monday through Friday, 11 a.m. to 8 p.m. unless prior arrangements are made with the unit Nurse Manager. If outside general business hours visitation will be approved on a case-by-case basis by the care team on site.
    • Visitation by multiple people per day is permitted, but no more than one visitor in the room at a time (visitors may wait in area waiting rooms, please do not congregate in the hallways)
    • Visitation is limited to two hours at a time, to allow the patient to rest and the care teams provide needed services. 
    • Visitors will not be allowed to spend the night at the bedside unless prior arrangements are made with the unit Nurse Manager.
  • Outpatient
    • Children under 18-years-old permitted. They must remain near their accompanying adult.  Staff will not attend to visiting children nor can they be left alone during care visit.
    • Outpatient visitors are restricted to one person accompanying the veteran to an appointment if they require assistance or are needed to assist with mobility.
    • Please wait in designated waiting areas.
    • Veterans and visitors arriving for Same Day procedures that require a designated driver will check in as directed in their pre-procedure calls.