In response to outbreaks of Rubeola (red measles) on college campuses throughout the United States and in accordance with
the American College Health Association's recommendation that students be immunized against certain diseases, UAB has established an immunization policy. The following is a synopsis of the UAB Immunization Policy, which applies to UAB students and to international scholars.
Students enrolling in programs of the School of Health Professions must show proof of immunization against Rubeola (if born on or after January 1, 1957) and must have had two (2) doses of a measles containing vaccine (Rubeola, MR, MMR) prior to registration. The primary vaccine must have been given at 12 months after birth or later. One dose must have been after 1980 and at least one of the doses must have been an MMR. Furthermore, those SHP students whose careers will put them in direct contact with patients who have not had Rubella (German measles) or chickenpox (varicella) or are unsure of their measles and chickenpox history are required to have a rubella or chickenpox (varicella) titer drawn. Tetanus and diphtheria immunizations also are required for all health profession students prior to enrollment or participation in academic, research, or clinical programs and activities on campus. These immunizations are mandatory.
The complete text of the UAB Immunization Policy may be obtained from the Office of SHP Student Services (Scrushy Building, Room 475), from the Office of Registration and Academic Records (Hill University Center, Room 207), or see UAB Policies.
In 1989, the UAB Medical Center began requiring that students accepted for enrollment in most programs in the School of Health Professions be immunized against Hepatitis B. The primary reason for this policy is the general agreement that immunization for Hepatitis B affords good protection against acquiring the disease. The increased spread of this disease has become a national public health concern.
The vaccination is required as a condition of enrollment for students in patient-related clinical programs. The vaccine is given in a series of three doses over a six month period and can be obtained from a personal physician, local county public health department, or other medical facility. Students who are unable to complete the series prior to enrollment in the School of Health Professions can begin the series upon enrollment at UAB, as well as complete remaining doses at UAB.
Students enrolling in a program that dictates the requirement of the Hepatitis B vaccine must provide the following on the Student Health Application Form:
- receipt of at least the first dose of the vaccine for Hepatitis B
- complete Hepatitis series dates with documentation and at least one positive Hepatitis B titer
- confirmation of prior illness with current serologic testing (within one year) to determine if chronically infected with HBV
- proof of a Hepatitis B titer before matriculation if the Hepatitis series was taken over seven years ago
- proof of a positive Hetatitis B titer before matriculation if the three vaccine dates are not known or if the vaccines were taken out of order.
Proof of completion of the Hepatitis B vaccine series must be presented to the UAB Student Health Services Office within six months of initial enrollment in the school and upon reentry after a break in enrollment. A Hepatitis B titer should be performed within one to two months after the third dose of the vaccine to determine if the person has responded to the vaccine series. Immunocompromised persons (e.g., dialysis patients, AIDS patients, and those whose significant partner is HbsAg-positive) should consider an additional Hepatitis B booster at least once every 5 years to ensure protection from the disease.
General medical information about Hepatitis B and the vaccine and a list of programs requiring the immunization can be obtained from the Office of SHP Student Services (Room 475, Scrushy Building). Contact a physician if further information on Hepatitis B is needed.
All health profession students are required to have a Tuberculin Skin Test within one year prior to enrollment and regardless of prior tuberculosis vaccinations (e.g., BCG). If reaction is positive or has been positive in the past, a current (within one year prior to enrollment) chest x-ray report is required.
A full range of outpatient (non-hospital) services is provided by the UAB Student Health Services, including routine laboratory work and x-ray services. The Student Health Services physician will arrange any necessary referrals for specialized treatment. Costs associated with the majority of routine lab tests, x-rays, and referrals are covered by the UAB Student Hospital Insurance Plan. If the student has waived the UAB Student Hospital Insurance Plan, these expenses will be the responsibility of the student and the student's personal insurance plan.
Not covered by the Student Health Service fee are obstetrical care, allergy testing and desensitization serum, home visits, extensive care of conditions existing prior to enrollment in the Student Health Service, and ongoing care by specialists outside the Student Health Service.
Since preventive medicine is emphasized by Student Health Services, information on medical matters of interest to health professions students is offered. The service maintains a professional relationship with the student, and strictest personal confidentiality is assured.
The Student Health Services Office operates 8:00 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday, except holidays. For life-threatening emergencies during non-office hours, the student should go for emergency treatment to the UAB Hospital Emergency Department. Once at the ER, the student should make contact with the Student Health physician on call. Students are responsible for understanding the limitations of the student's insurance coverage for emergency room visits. Student Health Services is not responsible for covering emergency room expenses not reimbursed by the student's hospital insurance policy. A doctor's "on-call" service for emergencies is available after office hours Monday through Friday and on weekends and holidays. This permits students to receive medical advice from the Student Health physician on call. All participants in Student Health Services are required to have hospitalization insurance, which may be obtained through the UAB Student Health Services (see Hospital and Major Medical Insurance
The preceding information is designed as an overview of the Student Health Services coverage and is subject to change at the beginning of any term. A brochure describing the Student Health Services and its policies is available from the Student Health Services, Community Health Services Building, 933 South 19th Street, Birmingham, AL 35294-2041. Telephone: (205) 934-3580.
Hospitalization insurance is mandatory for all students in the School of Health Professions. An annual student hospitalization insurance policy may be obtained through the UAB Student Health Services. Billing is handled through the UAB Cashier's Office.
A brochure describing the current hospitalization insurance policy is available from the Student Health Services. This policy offers coverages for spouses and dependents of students at an additional charge and also provides maternity coverage.
Students who are covered by other hospitalization insurance which offers coverage equivalent to that in the UAB student hospitalization policy must sign a waiver to this effect and will not be required to participate in the UAB student policy.