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Universities require vaccine records for new students

Students who fail to provide information to universities regarding vaccines may be denied acceptance.
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Students who fail to provide information to universities regarding vaccines may be denied acceptance.

Most public universities in Oregon require students to provide official medical immunizations records, Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR). Students who plan to transfer to any four year college or university can plan on being asked for up-to-date vaccine records.

Students who attend community colleges like Umpqua are not mandated to have these records for registration unless they participate in practicum experiences in allied health or education or collegiate sports programs.

Some schools both in Oregon and elsewhere will block students’ registration if the student is not compliant with the schools requirements for immunization records. Oregon law 433.040 gives colleges this right.

 UCC graduate, Hannah Hallgrimson, who is attending an out-of-state university, was asked to bring in her current immunization records and chose not to. After her mid-fall break, she was sent an email telling her she was not permitted to attend any more classes until she submitted her immunization record. Analysis of Hallgrimson’s  records showed she was behind on her tetanus vaccine and a few others that were also mandatory by this university, so she had to make a doctor appointment to have the vaccines updated, mean-while missing several days of course time. This situation can happen to many transfer students.

 Universities may also try to encourage students to have some vaccines that are not required but are highly recommended. The Meningococcal vaccine is greatly recommended by universities and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; the CDC reports that university students who live in dorms and tight quarters have a slightly higher chance of contracting Meningitis, a dangerous disease which can be airborne. This disease, if not detected early enough, leads to permanent paralysis, brain damage or death.

 Last year, a University of Oregon student, Lillian Pagenstecher, while living in a sorority house came down with bacterial meningitis. Within two days of exposure to the disease, she passed away.

Further information on immunizations that students should have or that are recommended is available at public.health.oregon.gov.

Students who prefer not to be immunized for private or religious reasons can learn about the legal exclusion and how to attain the accurate signed documents to give to their potential school from this site as well.