Links to Air Force Reserve Command COVID-19 Vaccine information and FAQ:
AFRC COVID-19 Resource page
Vaccine COVID-19 FAQ from AFRC website
Updated Travel and Force Health Information
COVID-19 VACCINE: AIR FORCE RESERVE FAQ’s
Q1. Will AFRC accept military members prior to 2 Nov 21 (For AD) or 2 Dec 21 (AFR) deadline who are not COVID-19 vaccinated?
A1: All non-prior service accessions will be fully vaccinated prior to departing for training; for members being accessed from the IRR or members affiliating from active duty, they will be required to be fully vaccinated before being accessed.
Q2. Will AFR accept military members from active duty (e.g., Palace Chase/Palace Front or transfers) who are non-vaccinated, as they await the adjudication of their pending Religious Accommodation Request (RAR)?
A2: Active Duty Airmen with a pending RAR, will not be considered for transfer into the AFR until their RAR, and any resulting appeals, have been fully adjudicated by the member's current organizational chain-of-command. If members’ RAR is denied, they will be required to meet IMR requirements, to include COVID-19 vaccination in order to affiliate with the AFR.
Q3. Even if a Palace Chase (PC)/Palace Front (PF) member has an approved Religious Accommodation (RA) exemption from the AD Component is AFRC obligated to accept the member, and what is the command’s position on such if they have the option to deny assignment to AFR as a result? Does the new MAJCOM/CC get a say in another review?
A3: An AD RA exemption for COVID-19 vaccination is transferable to the AFR. PC/PF members with an approved AD RA exemption may be allowed to affiliate in the AFR since the approval requirements for RA are the same for both RegAF and AFR. AFR unit commanders will make the determination on whether or not to accept an Airman into their unit.
Q4: I am an AGR not under AFRC/RE/ARPC and want to retire. Active duty policy is allotting 20 days of permissive TDY in addition to terminal leave in order to retire. Am I allowed to take the 20 days of permissive TDY if my AD supervisor grants it?
A4: Member may take 20 days permissive TDY as long as it is prior to 2 Dec 21. AGRs must be retired or on terminal leave by 2 Dec 2021, not in permissive TDY status.
Q5: Will a member who, prior to 3 Sep 21 (date of SecAF’s vaccination mandate memo), was approved for voluntary reassignment to the IRR, but who’s actual reassignment date to IRR will not occur until after 2 Dec 21, still be allowed to transfer to the IRR?
A5: Members will go into a No Pay-No Points status as of 2 Dec 21 and their reassignment date will likely be curtailed to 2 Dec 21 as well.
Q6: Will members who were denied re-enlistment and whose separation date was established after 2 Dec 21 be allowed to separate without receiving the vaccine?
A6: Members denied reenlistment will go into a No Pay-No Points status as of 2 Dec 21 and their separation date will likely be curtailed to 2 Dec 21.
Q7: If a member is in a No Pay-No Points status, pending discharge, separation or involuntary reassignment to the IRR, which will not take effect until after 2 Dec 21, is the member required to be vaccinated?
A7: Members currently in a No Pay-No Points status, pending discharge, separation or involuntary reassignment to the IRR will likely have their discharge, separation or involuntary reassignment to the IRR date curtailed to 2 Dec 21.
Q8: If I had a previous COVID positive test result, can I get an exemption from the vaccine shot in accordance with AFI 48-110, section 2-6, which states a medical exemption can be made with “Evidence of immunity based on serologic tests, documented infection, or similar circumstances.”?
A8: This AFI was written in 2018, before COVID-19 started and is intended for viruses with predictable behavior patterns and long histories of research. Due to limited long-term knowledge of COVID-19, and in particular, the rapidly changing variants, the US medical community does not have definitive information on what level of antibodies is needed to provide protection or how long the antibodies remain in the body. Doctors and medical researchers are confident that those who had a COVID-19 infection are better protected from re-infection after they have received the COVID vaccine. Lastly, the Secretary of Defense’s 24 Aug 21 memo on vaccinations states, “Those with previous COVID-19 infection are not considered fully vaccinated”; this memo supersedes the 2018 guidance in AFI 48-110, section 2-6, for the COVID-19 virus.
Q9: Is a member undergoing an MEB exempt from the COVID vaccine?
A9: Undergoing an MEB is not an authorized exemption to the COVID vaccine. If a member has a medical condition that would meet the criteria for an immunization specific medical exemption, then they need to provide the medical documentation regarding that allergy/condition that would preclude them from receiving the COVID vaccine. Members undergoing MEB’s can still participate within the physical limitation of their condition.
Q10: If I am involuntarily placed in Individual Ready Reserve (IRR) what benefits will I retain?
A10: Those Airmen involuntarily assigned to the IRR program who currently have a remaining military service obligation, an unexpired enlistment contract, or service commitment will remain in a non-participating status until expiration of their MSO or commitment (whichever is later), are eligible for certain entitlements associated with the IRR to include a green ID card, access to the BX, Commissary, MWR facilities (gym, lodging, etc.) and Space A travel. Members who are coming off active duty orders i.e., contingency orders, may qualify for 180 days of transitional medical care (TAMP) at the end of their tour. All other members would lose medical benefits under Tricare Reserve Select; however, they may sign up for dental benefits if they have at least 12 months remaining on their MSO or service commitment. Officers may continue to meet promotion boards but if selected for promotion, would need to meet IMR requirements and return to the SelRes in a position equal to the grade promoted to in order to affect the promotion. Members may also be eligible to receive other benefits through the Department of Veteran Affairs to include either the Montgomery or Post 9-11 GI Bills for qualifying members. IRR members who do not meet IMR requirements will not be allowed to participate for pay or points towards a military retirement.