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Is OTC requiring/mandating the COVID-19 Vaccine for students in the Health Sciences programs?

No, OTC is not requiring/mandating the vaccine for students. However, some of the clinical affiliates that programs use for clinical experience are requiring the Covid-19 vaccine. Currently you can see all the required vaccinations for programs HERE

I have already had COVID-19. Why do I need to be vaccinated?

Vaccines are recommended by the Centers for Disease Control even for people who have had COVID-19. Please click HERE to learn more. Additionally, OTC’s contractual obligations with our clinical affiliates requires us to follow their policies and if COVID-19 Vaccine is required, we must comply.  

I just had COVID-19, can I receive the Vaccine?

  1. Yes, current CDC guidelines states that you can receive the vaccine as soon as you are symptom free. If you were treated for COVID-19 with monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma while sick with COVID-19, you should wait 90 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. If you received monoclonal antibodies or convalescent plasma after you were exposed to someone with COVID-19 to prevent you from getting sick, you should wait 30 days before getting a COVID-19 vaccine. Talk to your healthcare professional if you are unsure what treatments you received or if you have more questions about getting a COVID-19 vaccine.  

I am already fully vaccinated. Am I required to get a booster vaccine?

At this time a booster vaccine is not required by any clinical affiliates. However, if their policies change, you would be required to obtain the booster to attend clinical at that location.  

Where can I get vaccinated?

Missouri Vaccine Navigator 

The Missouri Vaccine Navigator is intended to help Missourians navigate the COVID-19 vaccination process. This tool may not capture every event in your area, so we encourage you to engage with your local public health officials and health care facilities to learn more. 

Area Vaccine Registration Links – Greene County Vaccine Locations

May I submit an exemption request?

Some clinical sites do allow students to apply for medical or religious exemption. If accepted into the program, you can complete the application and the clinical site will determine whether you meet the requirements for exemption. Exemption is not guaranteed. If granted you may be subject to extra PPE requirements and weekly testing, which would be your responsibility to schedule and pay for. This cost can range from $85-150 per test.  

What happens if my exemption is not granted?

If unable to obtain exemption, you would be required to get the vaccination in order to enter the program.

I’m an employee of a medical facility. Do I still need to submit proof of vaccination for my role as a student or faculty accompanying student?

Yes, OTC will need to have a copy of your vaccination records.

I’m an employee of a medical facility that has granted me an exemption as an employee, will I need to get an exemption as a student?

Yes, employers can exempt you as an employee but might not as a student. Additionally, other clinical affiliates may not grant you an exemption. All clinical affiliates that you would attend as a student in a program would need to grant you an exemption.  

How soon do I need to start the vaccination process?

Once you are accepted into a program you will need to start the process of being fully vaccinated, if you are not already, or obtaining exemptions so you can start the given program. Fully vaccinated means you will need to have either one dose of the Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine or both doses of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines. Note, Pfizer is given three weeks apart and Moderna doses are given 4 weeks apart and you are not fully vaccinated until 2 weeks after the second dose.  

Will I still need to wear a mask while at clinical rotations if I am fully vaccinated?

Maybe, the wearing of masks at a clinical affiliate will be based on the clinical affiliates policies. These policies can vary so please contact your programs Program Director for more information on the wearing of masks.  

If I am pregnant will I need to be vaccinated?

Clinical sites may not exempt students on the basis of pregnancy, but students are still able to file for medical exemption related to other medical factors.  

What types of medical exemptions might be accepted?

Exact exemptions are up to the clinical affiliates. If the clinical affiliate has a medical exemption process you would need to apply and they will determine your exemption status.  

You will find the current CDC guidelines HERE.

What types of religious exemptions might be accepted?

Exact exemptions are up to the clinical affiliates. If the clinical affiliate has a religious exemption process you would need to apply and they will determine your exemption status.  

Can OTC exempt me as a student from clinical affiliates COVID-19 vaccine requirement?

No, OTC is not able to exempt students from our clinical affiliates policies as it their policies not OTC’s.  

Where can I get more information or ask questions?

Updated 12/17/21

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