Notice About Vaccination Against Bacterial Meningitis for All Entering

Effective for all students applying for admission for Spring 2012 and thereafter.

Texas law now requires an entering student who has been admitted/re-admitted to Rio Grande College to show evidence of receipt of an initial bacterial meningitis vaccination dose or booster during the five-year period preceding and at least 10 days prior to the first day of the semester in which the student initially enrolls, or following a break in enrollment of at least one fall or spring semester at Sul Ross State University or another institution.

Student Health Services has been designated to receive from the student evidence of receipt of an initial bacterial meningitis vaccination dose or booster during the five-year period preceding and at least 10 days prior to the first day of the first semester in which you initially enroll, or following a break in enrollment of at least one fall or spring semester at RGC or another institution.

Evidence of your having received the vaccination from an appropriate health practitioner must be received by Student Health Services. This information shall be maintained in accordance with Family Education Rights and Privacy Act Regulations, and with Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act. Rio Grande College is providing to you now, and with your registration materials the following:

  • written or electronic notice of the right of the student or of a parent or guardian of a student, to claim an exemption from the vaccination requirement, as specified in Section 21.614; and
  • written or electronic notice of the importance of consulting a physician about the need for the immunization against bacterial meningitis to prevent the disease.

Under justifiable circumstances, Admissions & Records may grant extensions to individual students to extend the compliance date to no more than 10 days after the first day of the semester or other term in which the student initially enrolls.

Exceptions:

  • A student is not required to submit evidence of receiving the vaccination against bacterial meningitis or evidence of receiving a booster dose if the student is 30 years of age or older or if the student is enrolled only in online or other distance education courses.
  • A student, or a parent or guardian of a student, is not required to submit evidence of receiving the vaccination against bacterial meningitis if the student, or a parent or guardian of a student, submits to the university:
    1. an affidavit or a certificate signed by a physician who is duly registered and licensed to practice medicine in the United States, in which it is stated that, in the physician's opinion, the vaccination required would be injurious to the health and well-being of the student; or
    2. an affidavit signed by the student stating that the student declines the vaccination for bacterial meningitis for reasons of conscience, including a religious belief. A conscientious exemption form from the Texas Department of State Health Services must be used.

The exception noted in subsection (2) above does not apply during a disaster or public health emergency, terrorist attack, hostile military or paramilitary action, or extraordinary law enforcement emergency declared by an appropriate official or authority from the Texas Department of State Health Services and is in effect for the location of the institution the student attends.