STUDENT HEALTH CENTER
Vaccines and Exemptions
All 50 states have legislation requiring specific vaccines for students. Although exemptions vary from state to state, all school immunization laws grant exemptions to children for medical reasons – those who cannot receive vaccines because of contraindications.
North Carolina State Law (General Statutes §130A 152–157) requires that all students entering college present a certificate of immunization to document that the student has received all immunizations required by law. While your state or country of origin may have different immunization requirements, you must comply with North Carolina laws and Meredith requirements. Under North Carolina law, if the state immunization requirements are not met within the 30 calendar days after the first day of class grace period, students will be removed from campus and unable to attend in-person classes.
North Carolina is one of 45 states and Washington D.C. that grant religious exemptions for people who have religious objections to immunizations. North Carolina does not allow for philosophical exemptions – those who object to immunizations because of personal, moral, or other beliefs (10A NCAC 41A .0403).
During an outbreak or cluster of a vaccine-preventable disease, students with medical or religious exemptions may be asked not to return to campus until the outbreak ends.
Under G.S.130A-156, a physician licensed to practice medicine in this State must certify that a required immunization is or may be detrimental to a person’s health due to the presence of one of the contraindications adopted by the Commission of Public Health. The North Carolina Medical Exemptions Statement (DHHS Form #3987) must be used to obtain a medical exemption for any state required immunization. The Meredith College Medical Exemption Form should be used only for a COVID-19 exemption request. All exemption documentation should be uploaded under the “Document Upload” portion of the Student Wellness Portal.
Under G.S.130A-157, if the bona fide religious beliefs of the student are contrary to the immunization requirements, then the student can be exempt from the state’s immunization requirements. In order to claim a religious exemption, the student requesting the exemption must write a statement of their religious objection to immunization, including the name and date of birth. This statement should be provided to the school in place of an immunization record. Students requesting this type of exemption should use the Meredith College Religious Exemption Form. All exemption documentation should be uploaded under the “Document Upload” portion of the Student Wellness Portal (link).
North Carolina does not allow for philosophical exemptions – those who object to immunizations because of personal, moral or other non-religious beliefs (10A NCAC 41A .0403).
State Required Vaccines
The state statute requiring proof of vaccination applies to all students except students residing off-campus and registering for any combination of
- Off-campus courses
- Evening courses (classes beginning after 5 p.m.)
- Weekend courses
- No more than four day credit hours in on-campus courses
If at any time the above student status changes to on-campus courses, course load of more than four (4) credit hours, on-campus residence, and/or enrollment in day-time courses, a Certificate of Immunization or record of immunization must be presented on or before the date the person first registers for a quarter or semester. For Fall 2022, the deadline for the following immunizations is Friday, September 23, 2022.
|Vaccine||Number Doses Required|
|Diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis||3 doses (at least one TDAP in the last 10 years)|
|Hepatitis B (if born after 7/1/1994)||3 doses|
|Varicella (if born after 7/1/2001)||2 doses|
|Meningococcal ACWY* (if born after 1/1/2003)||1 dose|
* Effective as of the 2021-22 academic year
Other Required Vaccines
Enrolled students at Meredith College must receive a full round of a coronavirus vaccine to meet this requirement. This is equivalent to 1 dose of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine, 2 doses of the Moderna vaccine, 2 doses of the Pfizer vaccine, or 2 doses of the Novovax vaccine. It is highly recommended that students stay up-to-date with their COVID vaccine series.
The influenza (“flu”) vaccine is recommended for all residential students–those living in the residence halls and Oaks apartments in 2022-23 and for all commuter students.
Meningitis B (Bexsero or Trumenba)
Adolescents and young adults ages 16 to 23 may receive this vaccine. Individuals who are at an increased risk of contracting serogroup B meningococcal disease should receive this vaccine. This includes people who have:
- Been near an outbreak location of serogroup B meningococcal disease
- Persistent complement component deficiencies
- Undergone treatment with eculizuma
- Anatomic or functional asplenia including sickle cell disease
- Been routinely exposed to isolates of N. meningitis during laboratory work
MenB vaccine can be administered at the same time as MenACWY vaccine.
HPV (Gardasil 4 or Gardasil 9)
HPV infection is the most common sexually transmitted infection in the U.S. and is the leading cause of cervical cancer. Currently the vaccine is recommended for all individuals 9-26 years of age. Adults between the ages of 27-45 years of age not adequately vaccinated may want to discuss vaccination with their provider.
The vaccine helps prevent cervical, vulvar, vaginal cancers and pre-cancers in females, as well as anal cancers and pre-cancers and genital warts in both females and males.
Deadlines for Submission of Vaccine Records
- Fall Semester: July 1st
- Spring Semester: December 1st
- Summer Semester: April 1st
Students need to complete the information under the “Pending Forms” link in their student wellness portal. The forms above must be printed and completed by a healthcare provider. Once completed the forms should be submitted via the portal.