UWMC Observations

UW Medical Center Observations

Observable medical staff at UWMC include: physicians, dentists, psychologists, A.R.N.P.s, P.A.s, R.N.s, C.R.N.A.s, microbiologists and other Ph.D.-level laboratory personnel, optometrists, pharmacists, social workers, and podiatrists.

Clinical observation is mandated by UW Medicine Compliance and applies to observational activity only. No patient care or hands-on medical training will be conducted. Observers will not perform any medical procedures on patients. They will not have direct contact or unsupervised access to patients. There will be no compensation provided by the medical administration. The observer or sponsoring provider/department is responsible for arranging visas, travel and accommodations.

Please be advised:

  • Persons under the age of 16 cannot apply for observation privileges per UWMC regulations.
  • Persons under the age of 18 are not allowed in operating rooms per UWMC regulations.

Please choose which observer category below you fit into and follow the instructions as listed:


All vendors are required to register with VendorMate.

Observing at Harborview

Visit the HMC Observation Privileges page to find more information about observing at Harborview.

Application process

Please read through the following information carefully to ensure appropriate steps are taken BEFORE you begin the application process. ​Allow three weeks for processing.

​Applications submitted less than three weeks from the observation start date may not be processed and approved in time.

Finding a provider to observe

Observational privileges will not be granted without the agreement and signature of a UWMC provider to take full responsibility for the observer's time at UWMC – Step 3 of the application.

It is the observer's responsibility to identify a provider to host them before submitting an application. If a provider has not been identified prior to the decision to observe, the observer may contact the department in the area of interest to discuss setting up an observational experience. Please note neither the Medical Director's Office nor the Chief Nursing Officer'​s office will assist in matching prospective observers with providers.


Observers are required to comply with all UWMC immunization policies and procedures.

Applications with incomplete immunization documentation will not be approved. Self-reported vaccine history will not be accepted, it must be official documentation from a healthcare provider/facility.

Read through all of the required proof of immunizations listed in the application. A copy of your immunization history must be provided with the application. You will attach a copy of your immunization history to the end of your application and submit as one PDF.

Important to note:​

  • Tuberculosis/Purified Protein Derivative (PPD)
    • Observer applicants must submit record of one of the following: Proof of a negative IGRA, T-Spot or Quantiferon Gold Blood Test within the last year. Applicants who have had a positive PPD in past are required to submit a negative chest x-ray taken within the last year.
    • Observer applicants who have had a BCG in the past will need to complete the above requirements.
  • Influenza Vaccine/Flu
    • Observer applicants are required to have a flu vaccine if observing between September 1st-April 30th.

Proof ​of all required immunizations listed in the application must be provided with the application. Please attach a copy of your immunization history to the end of your application and submit as one complete PDF.

​Please contact UWMC Employee Health directly if you have any questions regarding immunization, (206) 598-4848.

How to apply: Answer all questions following the instructions below, and obtain all appropriate signatures.


  • Page 1: Application and Agreement for Observational Activities 
    • Observer'​s name – Full name of observation applicant
    • Supervising Provider's Name – Full name of Active Medical Staff Member/patient care services staff member
    • Department – Department under which observation will be taking place
    • Job Title – Should be filled in as 'Observer', if not, write/type 'Observer'
    • End Date of Observational Activity – This has to be an exact date – Tentative/TBD is not allowed
  • Page 2 – Step 1: Biographical Information
    • Your Name – Full name of observation applicant
    • Your Email – Email address for observation applicant
    • Your Address – Full address for observation applicant
    • Are you 18 year of age or older – Answer Yes or No
    • Have you ever been convicted of a felony – Answer Yes or No
    • Have you ever had a medical license revoked or denied – Answer Yes or No
    • Read through. Observer applicant SIGNS AND DATES the bottom of this page. Obtain parental/guardian permission if under 18 years of age.
  • Page 3 – Step 2:Confidentiality Agreement
    • Read through. Observer Applicant SIGNS AND DATES bottom of this page
  • Page 4 – Step 3: Supervision
    • Who is supervising your observation – Fill in the name of the provider/staff member you will be observing
    • What department or unit are they with – Fill in the name of the department the supervising provider/staff member works within
    • What is their phone number – Fill in the phone number of the supervising provider/staff member
    • What is their email – Fill in the email address for the supervising provider/staff member
    • What is the first day of your observational activity - This has to be an exact date – Tentative/TBD is not allowed
    • What is the last day of your observational activity – This date must match the End Date indicated on Page 1. Again, this has to be an exact date.
    • UWMC Clinical Staff Sponsor – Supervising provider/staff member must sign and date
    • If observing more than one provider/staff member, please provide those providers full names, department, email addresses, signatures and date, as indicated at the bottom of this page.
    • If the observer will be with more than three providers, an additional page with the provider's information and signatures of approval is required and must be included in the application
    • Applications without a signature in the "Clinical Staff Sponsor" section of the form (or additional provider's page) will NOT be processed or approved.
  • Page 5 – Step 4: Letter of Intent
    • Type a 100–250 word paragraph explaining why you are interest in observing at UWMC and what you hope to gain from the experience.
  • Page 6 – Step 5: Immunization History
    • As indicated in the Immunization section above, read through this page carefully and provide proof of immunization history for those listed on this page.
    • You will attach a copy of your immunization history to the end of the application
    • If you have any questions about your immunization, please contact UWMC Employee Health directly, (206) 598-4848​.
  • Page 7 – Step 6: Tuberculosis Symptom Survey
    • Fill in the date, observer applicant's Last Name, First Name, Middle Initial, Date of Birth, Employee Identification Number (EID) or UW Student ID number is only required if they are already affiliated with UW
    • Answer Yes or No to all 7 symptom questions
  • Combine completed application and immunization records into one PDF and submit to either observer@uw.edu or obsvrn@uw.edu.​​​

Notifications & next steps

Application and immunizations will be reviewed by either the Medical Director's Office or Chief Nursing Officer's office.

  • Applicants are notified (including any department coordinator included in the email submission process) of approval and next steps for badging.
  • The observer must bring the approval documentation and their application to Public Safety (located in BB-120) to obtain a temporary identification badge. This badge will allow the observer into patient care areas and must be worn visibly at all times. Individuals without a UWMC badge may be asked by security to leave patient care areas.

If you have questions or need further information:

  • Contact the Medical Director's office at observer@uw.edu if observing a medical staff provider (physician, A.R.N.P., P.A., dentist).
  • Contact the Chief Nursing Officer's office at obsvrn@uw.edu if observing a nurse or other patient care services staff member.