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University of Wisconsin–Madison

Research participant access on campus in light of Safer Badgers

Dear Colleagues, 

Beginning Jan. 25, UW–Madison graduate/professional students and employees coming to campus will need to use the Safer Badgers app to show they are in compliance with campus health and safety requirements in order to access campus buildings.

The Safer Badgers building access requirement only applies to students and employees at UW–Madison. It does not apply to research participants who are unaffiliated with UW–Madison. However, to access campus buildings, visitors must be escorted by a member of the campus community with whom they have business. For face-to-face research participants, this should be a study team member who will greet them and escort them to the research site. The person hosting the visitor is responsible for ensuring the visitor follows all campus health protocols, including wearing a face covering and physically distancing.

While the Safer Badgers requirements are in place, campus buildings will be closed to the general public and many will be monitored by Badger Wellness Ambassadors. These ambassadors will permit entry only to individuals in compliance with campus health and safety protocols and granted building access through a screen in the Safer Badgers app called the Badger Badge, visitors with a business purpose escorted by employees and students using the Safer Badgers app, or to contractors and delivery personnel in uniform.

Employees and students who will come to campus for any reason should download the Safer Badgers app to schedule their tests, manage their results, and access their badge to ensure they can gain access to campus buildings.

Employees and graduate students who do not need to access UW­–Madison buildings will not need to get tested, though they may want to consider being prepared in case they should need to visit campus on short notice.

UW Health employees who are not dual employees of UW–Madison, as well as UW Health patients and research study participants, will also be treated as visitors. Additionally, anyone entering a UW Health facility is required to continue to follow masking, visitor limitation, physical distancing and other protocols, as required by the facility.

Dual employees of SMPH and UW Health must be in compliance with campus testing requirements in order to access campus buildings. The dual employee notice is linked on the SMPH Intranet COVID-19 Operations page. These employees must have a negative test on file within the previous eight days of their visit to campus. The only exception is for employees who are simply passing straight through Health Sciences Learning Center between the hospital and the parking garage, bike racks or bus stops.

For more information about community members visiting campus facilities, see the COVID Response FAQ and filter by “community”:

The Safer Badgers’ app is available for download at

Information on building access is posted here.

For more information and answers to questions about UW–Madison’s COVID-19 response, visit the webpage for FAQs.  Thank you for helping ensure that researchers and students can conduct in-person research and scholarly activities on campus, while minimizing the risk of transmission of COVID-19.


Nadine P. Connor, PhD 

Associate Vice Chancellor for Research Policy and Compliance