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Overview

Vaccines are an important part of preventive care throughout life from infancy through adulthood. Vaccinations/Immunizations help prevent many serious and sometimes life-threatening diseases. Immunizations are most often given as injections and are often given in a series of three or more shots over months or years.

Check with your doctor regularly to make sure you're current on all of your shots. Take a moment to review the current adolescent and adult immunization recommendations.

Alvernia University's Required Immunizations

For the safety of all our students, Alvernia University requires the following immunizations.  Our requirements are supported by the Centers for Disease Control and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.  If for any reason your are unable or unwilling to receive these vaccinations, you must submit in writing the reason to the Director of Health Services and sign a waiver.  Noncompliance with these requirements may prevent you from registering for classes.

  • 2 Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) vaccines or positive titers
  • 2 Varicella Vaccines or proof of chicken pox disease or positive titer
  • 3 Hepatitis B Vaccines or positive titer
  • 1 TDaP (tetanus, diptheria and acellular pertussis) within the past 10 years
  • 1 Meningitis Vaccine after the age of 16 **Required for resident students, recommended for commuter students**

Flu Vaccine

The Health & Wellness Center recommends the flu vaccine for all of our students, faculty and staff.  We strongly encourage our high-risk community to be vaccinated.

You are considered HIGH RISK if any of the following apply to you:
  • Pregnant females.
  • Healthcare workers, including students doing clinical rotations and those providing home care to those at high-risk for complications.
  • Persons with chronic medical problems.
  1. Heart or lung disease, including asthma
  2. Diabetes
  3. Weakened immune system
  4. Blood, liver, kidney, neurologic or neuromuscular disorders
  • American Indians and Alaskan natives.
  • Caregivers of children younger than 5 years of age or those with the high-risk conditions mentioned above.
  • Individuals over the age of 50.

Prevention of Common Viral Illnesses

  • Practice good hand washing hygiene: Wash your hands often, especially after you cough or sneeze. If you are not able to wash hands, use an alcohol-based hand cleaner.
  • Practice good respiratory etiquette: Cover your nose and mouth with your sleeve when you cough or sneeze. Throw away your tissue after you use it.
  • Know the signs and symptoms of the flu: fever >100°F, sore throat, cough, body aches, fatigue
  • Stay home if you have flu or flu-like illness. You should be fever free without the use of fever reducing medications (acetaminophen or ibuprofen) for 24 hours before returning to class or work.
  • Talk with your health care providers about whether you should be vaccinated for seasonal flu.

HPV Vaccine

The Southeast Division of the Pennsylvania Department of Health is offering free Gardasil (HPV) vaccine clinics at Berks County colleges. Interested students (female and male) aged 18-26 who have not yet completed the vaccination series are eligible for the program.

The National Catholic Bioethics Center in a 2006 statement, "considers HPV vaccination to be a morally acceptable method of protecting against this disease." Per the January, 2007 position statement by the Catholic Medical Association "the CMA encourages use of this safe, effective and ethically acceptable vaccine but at the same time rejects efforts to mandate that girls be vaccinated against HPV."  According to John Brehany, Ph.D., S.T.L., Executive Director of the CMA, the fact that HPV is spread primarily by sexual contact does not render vaccination against it unethical.  Brehany stated, "Healing and preventing diseases, no matter what their source, are acts of mercy and a moral good."

Gardasil is a vaccine designed to prevent diseases caused by Human Papilloma Virus (HPV), such as cervical cancer in women and genital warts in men and women. Seventy-five percent of men and women will be affected by HPV in their lifetime. In addition to the cervical and genital diseases, HPV accounts for the rise of mouth and throat cancer in the U.S. and Western Europe, particularly in younger individuals. While HPV is spread by genital sexual contact, it does not have to be intercourse, ie. it is also spread by hand and oral contact. Infection has even occurred in women  who remain abstinent prior to monogamous marriage. Please call the Health and Wellness Center if you have questions about the vaccine or this program. You may also visit the Gardasil website for more information about the vaccine. Please take a moment to review the dates for the FREE Gardasil vaccination clinic.

We have made every effort to notify Alvernia University students of this vaccination clinic via email. If you did not receive the email, please click here to review a copy.

Health & Wellness Update
As a service to the Alvernia University community, the Health & Wellness Center, along with other University Life offices and Athletics, is providing an online subscription to Student Health 101 to all of our students and their families.  Take a look at the current issue and watch your email and facebook for the next monthly issue!


Recently, there has been a lot of media attention on the resurgence of bed bugs in the United States.  To find out more and to learn what to do if you find bed bugs, please click here.

Learn more about the Health and Wellness Center.




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