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FAQs about your Pre-Entrance Health Requirements

Q: Do I have to have a physical examination before I begin school?

A: It will be important to have all your medical information and other necessary medical care reviewed by your physician, although the University of Virginia does not require that you have a physical exam. You will want to ensure that you have had all the necessary pre-entrance immunizations, and in particular, a screening for TB. Only your health care provider can assess your risk for TB, and his/her signature is required on the pre-entrance health form.

Q: What happens if I don't meet the Immunization requirements on time?

A: It is important that you complete the Pre-entrance Health Record accurately and return it by August 31. If your completed form is not postmarked by August 31, you will be subject to a late fee of $100. Student Health offers a secure Web site (https://www.healthyhoos.virginia.edu) where you may enter immunization data to help you assure you have completed all the pre-entrance health requirements prior to submitting the hard copy. In addition, if you do not meet the requirements by mid-October, a hold will be placed on Spring Semester registration. If this should occur, you may lose your ability to register for your necessary classes, and access to your scholarship monies may be affected.

Specific documentation of your immunizations is required at the University of Virginia: 2 MMR's (measles, mumps rubella) at least one month apart, an up to date Tetanus Diphtheria booster (within 10 years), Meningococcal Meningitis vaccine(or a waiver may be signed), Hepatitis B series (or waiver), and a TB screening. Health Care students (medical and nursing) are required to have received the Hepatitis B series, or a positive titer, documented proof of immunity to varicella (chickenpox) even if you have had the vaccine, and a rubella antibody titer test if you were born after 1957.

Q: What if I have a medical condition, mental health condition, or disability that I should share with the Student Health Center?

A: If you have a chronic medical or mental health condition it would be advisable for your primary care physician or mental health provider to send a summary of your condition to the Student Health Center. This summary could include any restrictions on activity, current medications, and requirements for treatment while away at school. The Student Health Center can accommodate the requirements for lab testing with a physician order, and we can fax the results with the appropriate release of information signatures.

If you have a disability that needs accommodations, please review the Learning Needs and Disability section of the Student Health web site for information. You may also contact them at 434-243-5180. Also, make sure you are knowledgeable about your own health conditions, allergies to medications and foods, prior health problems, and the medications you take on a routine basis. You may also have your prescriptions transferred to the Student Health pharmacy.

Q: What is the difference between a TB Screening Assessment or a TB skin test?

A: All students who attend the University of Virginia must be screened to assess the risk that you have acquired a tuberculosis infection. There are several screening assessment questions on the pre-entrance health form your health care provider must answer to assess this. Please make sure he/she has signed your form. Unsigned forms will not be accepted. A history of BCG immunization does not fulfill this requirement.

Only students who are at risk (close contacts to persons with TB; persons with symptoms of TB such as cough, night sweats, and noticeable, non-planned weight loss; foreign born in a high TB prevalent country; health care professions students or students who would volunteer in a nursing home or prison) will be required to have a TB skin test placed.

A TB skin test is the standard method of testing exposure to tuberculosis with the purified antigen from the TB bacterium. A small amount of this liquid is injected just under the skin so that a "bubble" appears. If you are considered to be positive by your physician, meaning that the raised reaction is larger than allowed, a chest X-ray will need to be taken to prove that you do not have tuberculosis disease. The Tine test is no longer an acceptable method to test for tuberculosis.

Tuberculosis skin tests administered outside the U.S. and Canada, reported as "positive" or "negative" without a measurement of the reaction and or conducted more than 6 months prior to arriving at UVA cannot be accepted. A positive PPD test in the past does not need to be repeated, however, your chest x-ray report is required.

Q: Can I get immunizations at Student Health once I get to school?

A: While it is most appropriate to have your pre-entrance immunization requirements met before you arrive at school, the Student Health Center does offer a variety of vaccines and immunizations but it will be important that your Pre-entrance Health form be turned in first, in order to document which vaccines you have already received. Once the Medical Records Department has reviewed your records, you can log onto Healthy Hoos to see if you are compliant. Immunizations are provided by appointment which you can make via the Healthy Hoos website. Immunizations are available at Student Health between 8:30am-12 noon & 1pm-4:30pm each day.

For those who require a PPD skin test, you must have a 2-step testing process to be completed by your primary care physician. Chest x-ray may not be substituted for a PPD. If you do not have risk factors for tuberculosis (see the Pre-Entrance Health form), a tuberculosis screening, completed by your clinician or health department, is required. Signature of your licensed health care provider is required. TB testing is provided at Student Health (except on Thursdays) if you have not been able to accomplish this at home.

Vaccines prior to travel are also available. Please review the instructions on the Student Health Web site regarding the process to receive travel vaccines, and make sure you make a travel appointment well in advance of your departure.

Q: When I'm at school, how should I decide if I need to see the nurse or the physician when I don't feel well?

A: You may call the general medicine phone number at 434-924-3915 to request an appointment to be seen by a physician. The clinic staff can choose the most appropriate care provider or triage nurse based on your concern or illness.

We also have an after-hours nurse on call at 434-972-7004 to assist you when Student Health is closed. The triage nurse can answer your health care questions, and can assist you with situations when you don't need to see a physician. If you are in doubt, or have an urgent need, and no appointment, our triage nurses can assess your situation, refer you for same day care, or suggest the appropriate health care provider for your particular situation.

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