The University of Saskatchewan Health Sciences’ programs employ a comprehensive and standardized approach to vaccination and serology testing requirements for students enrolled in their programs, based on best practice guidelines, and in conjunction with Saskatchewan Health Authority.
Therefore, the requirements of students for clinical practice courses is outlined below. It is your responsibility to ensure that all immunization requirements have been met in a timely manner.
In the event that a student believes they have rationale for non-compliance with the required immunizations, this must be discussed in advance. If a student is unable to comply with the required immunizations, they may be excluded from certain clinical placement sites, or may be asked to leave their clinical placement site in the event of an outbreak. Therefore, the ability to complete all required elements of the MPT program may be in jeopardy, and admission to the MPT may also be in jeopardy.
This could mean that completion of the program is not possible, or it could mean that a ‘waiver’ form must be signed in the event that alternatives are identified.
- Do not delay attending to these immunization requirements. Some processes related to immunizations take time. Completion of immunization requirements is the responsibility of the student as well as any associated costs. Most immunizations are covered by your Provincial Health card, with one exception being the Two Step Tuberculin skin test, which will cost approximately $80.
- Students enrolled in the MPT Program MUST provide official, signed evidence of immunization status on entry into the program.
- It is recommended that, when possible, the immunization profile is completed through the U of S Student Wellness Centre to be officially entered into their files. If immunizations and serology tests are completed elsewhere, these records must then be submitted to the U of S Student Wellness Centre for review and verification. When this is complete the student is provided an electronic signed copy of their completed record by the Student Wellness Centre, which then must be submitted by the student, electronically, to email@example.com by the date specified in the admissions procedures of each year.
- Hepatitis B immunizations, if not previously received, must at least show documentation that the series of immunizations has been started prior to entering the MPT program. There is approximately a 6 month time frame to receive the complete Hep. B immunizations series, and serology for proof of protection, and this series may be completed after starting the program. The Hep B series of vaccinations must be completed by March 1 of the year following admission to the MPT program.
- Students must also have all blood tests completed (titres) before entering the MPT, except for the serology for Hepatitis B which can only be completed after you have completed the full series of Hepatitis B vaccinations.
- Failure to submit validation of a completed, required immunization profile to the MPT program by the date specified in the admissions package, may result in the student being unable to complete the requirements in any of clinical practice courses of the program. Clinical facilities can, and at times do, refuse a student assignment to the facility for clinical practicum experience based on failure to comply with immunization requirements.
- The student immunization record will always be kept in a secure, confidential central records’ file and should be updated, as required, during the time in the program. The U of S Student Wellness Centre stores and reviews immunization records for each student while in the MPT Program. Clinical facilities may require that a student present documentation of up-to-date immunizations, or that the School verify that the record is complete, prior to a clinical practicum. The Student Wellness Centre signed validation (provided to each student) should be kept on hand in the event that a health facility asks to see it.
- The health environment is constantly changing and in fact may vary with each health institution. There may be new requirements for additional immunizations, or immunity status testing, to upgrade the status and comply with U of S or Health Authority required vaccinations during the program. This is also necessary to meet standards required for various clinical placements. The costs associated with any additional immunizations or testing are normally the student’s responsibility.
Specific MPT Immunization Requirements
- Tetanus/Diphtheria (Td):
- Primary series of 3-5 doses, then a booster every 10 years
- Primary series and adults are encouraged to have a Td booster with the pertussis component once in their adult lifetime.
- Primary series, booster if travelling in endemic areas.
- Measles, mumps, rubella:
- Documented proof of vaccination with 2 doses of measles, mumps and rubella OR by proof of immunity by serological evidence (bring in a copy).
- Tuberculin skin test (TST):
- Initial two step TST skin test, 1 to 4 weeks apart is required prior to client contact.
- If there is a history of a positive Tuberculin, a CXR is required.
- Hepatitis B:
- A series of two or three doses followed by an antibody check.
- If you have already received the series, lab evidence of immunity is required (bring in a copy).
- If the Hepatitis B Surface Antibody is non-immune (0 mIU/ml), a Hepatitis B surface antigen test must be done. If the antigen test is positive, consult your Health Care Provider.
- If the antigen test is negative, (and antibody non-immune); revaccination and reassessment for immunity must be done.
- Varicella (Chickenpox):
- Proof of two doses of varicella vaccination OR by Serological evidence of immunity (bring in a copy)
- It will be required to obtain a vaccination against influenza, a seasonal ‘flu shot’, each Fall, starting in the second year of the program.
- COVID 19 Vaccination:
- Vaccination for COVID-19 (both doses) is strongly recommended. It is anticipated that this will be a requirement in the clinical environment for clinical practice courses.
On admission to the MPT program, students are asked to sign a statement of compliance with the immunization requirements for the School, which will be kept in your confidential student file. This statement will be similar to the statement below. Please read this statement in advance to understand what it requires, as students must complete a document entitled “Immunization Requirements Consent to Comply” (included with MPT program registration materials).
“I agree to comply with all the immunization requirements of the School of Rehabilitation Science Master of Physical Therapy program as outlined in the document above, unless there are ‘significant extenuating circumstances’. Any perceived ‘extenuating circumstances’ must immediately be reported to the School of Rehabilitation Science for investigation and consultation as to whether they can be accommodated. I understand that failure to comply with the immunization requirements will normally impact on my participation in clinical practice courses.”
If you have questions about these requirements, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
(Reviewed and revised May 27, 2021)