Establishing Affiliation Agreements with Clinical Agencies

Establishing an affiliation agreement between the School of Nursing and the Clinical Site is required by the University of Washington for the placement of any student, graduate or undergraduate, in a clinical agency. Students who enter clinical sites in a student role without confirmation that an affiliation agreement is in place, risk dismissal from their programs of study.

Factors in Site Selection: Placement Coordinators in Student and Academic Services or Faculty of the School of Nursing make the initial contacts with potential agencies/sites. Several factors are taken into consideration in selecting a clinical learning site. The primary factors are 1) the site supports student learning and 2) the site's current model of care fits course and program objectives. Additional factors considered in the selection are:

  • there is a record of safe care delivery at the site
  • the site is able to handle students without disrupting patient care
  • the number of students to be placed at the site is appropriate to the number of patients and care delivery
  • student safety at the site is assured
  • members of the teaching faculty are familiar with the site
  • the site has an appropriate ratio of diversity in patients and staff
  • the quality of preceptors is excellent at the site
  • a legal contract has been established between the UW School of Nursing and the clinical agency

Process of Establishing an Agreement with a Clinical Site

  1. Clinical Placement Coordinator (CPC) checks to see if there is an active agreement in the Placement Database
  2. If the agreement has expired, the CPC will submit an online renewal request to Student and Academic Services (SAS) staff at least six (6) weeks in advance
  3. If there is no agreement the CPC submits a new Affiliation Agreement (AA) request
  4. SAS staff will send the CPC an email confirmation their request was received
  5. SAS staff will add the agency to the database within 48 hours (2 business days) of receipt
  6. SAS staff will make phone contact with the agency within 48 hours (2 business days)
  7. If they are unable to make phone contact in 1-2 weeks (10 business days), SAS staff will contact the CPC that submitted the request to facilitate email contact with the agency
  8. If a non-standard agreement is needed, Chloe Mahar in SAS will notify Laura Mason and the CPC

AS staff will update the status of the agreement in the database throughout each of the following steps.

Standard (and/or Washington State) Agreements: 4-6 Weeks for Processing

  1. Chloe Mahar prepares standard agreements and submits them for the necessary UW signatures
    1. Signature:  Maggie Baker (Associate Dean for Academic Affairs) – 2 business days
    2. Standard agreement is sent to agency for signatures – timeline is agency-dependent
    3. Signature:  Health Sciences Administration – 3 business days
  2. Once the agreement is signed by all parties, Chloe will email the CPC to notify them the agreement is active

Non-Standard (Washington State or Out-of-State) Agreements: 6 Weeks to 12 Months for Processing

  1. Laura Mason manages the process for all non-standard agreements
    1. If the UW Attorney General’s (AGO) Office is needed, estimate a 4-8 week delay each time they are brought in for consultation
    2. Non-Standard agreements are quite complex and time-consuming; therefore, it is not unusual for one to take 6-12 months to process (if the UW AGO is needed it will take an additional 4-6 weeks for each review)
    3. Signature: Maggie Baker (Associate Dean for Academic Affairs) – 2 business days
    4. Agreement is sent to agency for signatures – timeline is agency-dependent
    5. Signature: Health Science Administration – 3 business days
  2. Once the agreement is signed by all parties, Laura will email the CPC to notify them the agreement is active

Questions and Concerns About Affiliation Agreements

  • Should any questions or concerns arise about any Affiliation Agreements or requests and processing, please contact Laura Mason ( who manages all agency agreements.
  • Any questions for the Clinical Placement Coordinators should be emailed to an individual CPC or to the entire CPC group at

Review of Affiliation Agreements

Affiliation agreements on file are reviewed every three years.

Tri-campus Considerations

Since March 1999, affiliation agreements have been between the School of Nursing at Seattle, at Bothell and at Tacoma and the clinical sites. In this way all three campuses of the School are covered and duplication of contracts with an agency is avoided. The three campuses have agreed to check with one another regarding the existence of an agreement before initiating any agreement with a site for student placements. Each campus may refer to a list of agreements held by the other two campuses.

Revised December 2013
Student and Academic Services Memo No. 21