Health Requirements

ARC-PA Standard: A3.07a, b; A3.17b; A3.19

Health Insurance
All full-time matriculated College of Mount Saint Vincent students are required to maintain adequate health insurance coverage. All students will have the Student Health Insurance premium on their bill pending the decision to enroll or waive out.

If you wish to use your personal or family health insurance, you must waive the College-sponsored plan to avoid being charged. Please visit gallagherstudent.com/mountsaintvincent to fill out the waiver form. You will receive an email once you have successfully submitted your petition. Your plan will be reviewed to ensure that it is a comparable plan. You will then receive a second email approving or denying your petition.

If you wish to enroll in the College-sponsored plan, please visit gallagherstudent.com/mountsaintvincent to fill out the enrollment form.

The annual decision form for 2022-2023 will be available beginning on June 15, 2022. The deadline for Fall 2022 students to enroll or waive out is August 31, 2022.

Health Insurance Cost
The 2022-2023 Student Health Insurance Plan charge is to be determined for graduate students at this writing. The policy term is effective August 1, 2022 through July 31, 2023.

For further information on the Student Health Insurance Plan, contact customer service at Gallagher Student Health at 844-329-1588 or visit gallagherstudent.com/mountsaintvincent.

For further information regarding the Health Insurance policy please visit Health Resources.

Background Checks
Please refer to the College’s Master of Science Physician Assistant Program Policy #307 for more information.

Immunizations
The College of Mount Saint Vincent Master of Science Physician Assistant Program requires students to provide proof of immunizations, which are in accordance with the current recommendations for healthcare professionals by the Center for Disease Control and the New York State Department of Health.

New York State Proof of Immunization Requirement
In accordance with New York State law, students born on or after January 1, 1957 must demonstrate proof of immunization to measles, mumps, and rubella. Students must submit acceptable medical proof of immunization. Forms are available with registration materials during the admission process. Students who fail to provide the required proof of immunization will not be permitted to register or attend classes until a properly completed form has been submitted to the Office of the Registrar.

New York State Public Health Law also requires college and university students to either receive the vaccination against Meningococcal meningitis, or acknowledge that they have been made aware of the risks and have chosen not to be vaccinated. All residential housing students are required to receive the vaccination; they may not sign the waiver. To comply with New York State regulations, you must complete the Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) and Meningitis Immunization Form. Please email this form to immunizationrecords@mountsaintvincent.edu.

Important Addendum to SARS-CoV-2 Immunizations
During the didactic year, the College’s Master of Science Physician Assistant Program will be instituting selected clinical site visits in conjunction with certain course material being offered (i.e. Clinical Correlations). As such, affiliated clinical sites will require, in many instances, that all students rotating in any manner through their facility be fully vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2 (COVID-19). This is a requirement of the affiliated clinical site and thus is a mandatory requirement prior to a clinical site visit. Failure to obtain the necessary vaccination will preclude the student from participating in this aspect of the program.

It is fully understood that a student may have a medical necessity for refusal of the Covid-19 vaccination and in that instance the following protocol must be noted:

  1. The student must notify their academic advisor prior to the start of any didactic course work.
  2. Any contraindication to the SARS-CoV-2 vaccination must be accompanied with a letter from your primary care physician stipulating this medically documented contraindication.
    • Students who present a letter from their primary care physician stipulating the medically documented contraindication will be given additional course work, and projects in-lieu of the clinical site visit, which will be graded accordingly.
    • The documentation from the primary care physician stipulating the medically contraindication does not preclude the student from the SARS-CoV-2 PCR testing requirement.

Additional Immunizations/Laboratory Tests Required by the Master of Science Physician Assistant Program
All requirements for the program should be emailed to physicianassistant@mountsaintvincent.edu by the defined date in your acceptance packet.

  • SARS-COVID-19 vaccinations are mandatory for all students upon admission to the CMSV PA program (see addendum for clarification):
    • All admitted students must supply proof of SARS-COVID-19 vaccination.
    • Both the front and back of the vaccination card must be clearly legible and show both doses and dates.
    • A SARS-COVID-19 negative PCR test must be submitted within one week of the start of classes. No exceptions.
  • Annual influenza vaccine:
    • All students are required to have a yearly, documented flu vaccine. This includes both didactic and clinical year students. Any contraindication to the vaccine must be accompanied with a letter from your primary care physician stipulating this medically documented contraindication.
    • Influenza vaccination documentation is a requirement by many of our clinical affiliates prior to the rotation.
    • Failure to receive an influenza vaccination will delay your entry into the clinical year unless proper documentation is on file (see above).
  • Clinical rotation sites, hospitals, and clinic areas require further immunization status to be identified. Due to this requirement and to ensure no student is denied participation within a clinical site, the following additional immunization and testing is required. These include:
    • Laboratory test results:
      • 2-step PPD Mantoux within one year of entrance to the program.
      • If PPD is positive, chest x-ray or QuantiFERON-Gold and record of results, place, and date of examination are required.
      • Tetanus/diphtheria 1-time dose (Tdap) toxoid within the past ten (10) years.
      • Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Hepatitis-B, and Varicella vaccine and titer indicating immunity and titers for Hepatitis B Surface Antibodies (HbsAB), Hepatitis B Core Antibody (HbcAB), Hepatitis B Surface Antigen (HbsAG), and Hepatitis C Surface Antigen (HcsAG).
    • Influenza vaccination documentation is a requirement by many of our clinical affiliates prior to the rotation as noted above.
    • SARS-COVID-19 negative PCR test may be required by all clinical sites prior to the start of any clinical rotation.
      • Please be aware of this stipulation and arrange to receive a PCR test at least 1-week prior to the start of all clinical rotations.

Please note: If Hep-B Titer shows lack of immunity student must supply proof of immunization.

Clinical Site Requirements
Prior to entry into the clinical phase of the program, some clinical sites may require additional tests to be performed. These may include:

  1. Stool for enteric pathogens may be required prior to clinical training in a newborn nursery
  2. Urine toxicology test (drug screen)
  3. Fingerprinting
  4. Background Check
  5. 2-Step PPD
  6. Hepatitis laboratory titer results for: Hepatitis B Surface Antibody (HbsAB), Hepatitis B Core Antibody (HbcAB), Hepatitis B Surface Antigen (HbsAG), and Hepatitis C Surface Antigen (HcsAG).
  7. Annual influenza vaccination
  8. SARS-COVID-19 vaccination and/or testing prior to rotation

International Clerkships/Medical Relief Missions
Students participating in international rotations receive information for required immunizations base upon country specific CDC recommendations from Child Family Health International after they have identified the country they will be travelling to and can be found in the CDC’s Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.

Prior to departure, students will receive program specific materials with information on making travel arrangements, visa requirements, and updated recommended immunizations. CFHI utilizes recommendations from the CDC as well as government officials for country specific requirements for immunizations.

Please note: Check with the Director for Clinical Education/Clinical Coordinator or Clinical Administrative Assistant at least two weeks prior to the start of your clinical rotation to ensure you have all the required immunizations and lab test necessary to proceed with the clinical site training. This is the responsibility of the student. Failure to comply may result in delaying of the start of your clinical site rotation.

Health Attestation/Medical Clearance
In order to ensure the safety of students, staff, clinical agency personnel, and patients, and to comply with clinical agency contract mandates, no students will be permitted to participate in clinical rotations unless they have been medically cleared. This may include, but is not limited to, facility mandated drug screening, background check, PPD testing, color blindness testing, physical exam, respirator mask fit testing, student interview, or facility orientation. It is the physician assistant students’ responsibility to ensure all requirements are met. Failure to satisfy these requirements may result in student removal from the rotation site, rotation reassignment, and a subsequent delay in graduation. Students must bring copies of all completed health clearance documents with them to every clerkship. Students must keep a copy of the completed health clearance documents for their own records. Health Attestation/Medical Clearance must be updated annually.

The student must complete an annual health attestation form including a physical exam. The health attestation form will be uploaded to Exxat by the student.  Do not upload your physical exam or any other documents that contain your medical history other than those requested by the College’s Physician Assistant Student Program. Your site may ask you for a copy of your physical examination, which you can provide to them. Please make sure to retain a copy of your actual physical exam form, as that is not uploaded to Exxat, but will be required to participate and rotate at all hospital locations.

Addendum to Immunizations

General Information
Our healthcare (clinical) affiliate partners have immunization requirements that are unique for each facility. Some are more comprehensive than others, thus in light of this fact, we have included a set of standards that will encompass all clinical site affiliates and place all students in “compliance.”

As guests in their facilities, our program’s participants must comply with all healthcare screening and other requirements imposed as a condition of the healthcare affiliation agreement.

Measles, Mumps, and Rubella (MMR) | One Time
Students must have antibody titers for Measles, Mumps, and Rubella with ‘Immune’ or ‘Positive’ laboratory ranges. In addition, dates of two MMR vaccinations are also required. If any titer is ‘Non-Immune,’ the student must then have two boosters for the disease(s), which must be at least one month apart for compliance.

One month following the second booster vaccination, the student will then need to re-titer for the non-immune diseases. Please enter the dates of your vaccinations and titers into the immunization form. Please have the primary healthcare provider fill in all the requested items.

Varicella | One Time
Students must have an antibody titer for Varicella with an ‘Immune’ or ‘Positive’ laboratory result. If the titer shows to be ‘Non-Immune,’ the student must then have two (2) boosters for the disease, which must be at least one (1) month apart for compliance. Please enter the dates of your vaccinations and titer into the immunization form. Please have the primary healthcare provider fill in all the requested items.

Hepatitis-B (HeptaVac) | One Time
One-time, three injections Hepatitis B immunization series. The dates of three Hepatitis B vaccinations are required. In addition, students must have three titers: Hepatitis B Surface Antibody (HbsAB), Hepatitis B Core Antibody (HbcAB), and Hepatitis B Surface Antigen (HbsAG) with a laboratory result.

If the HbsAB titer is ‘Non-Immune’ after two-separate three shot series, the student must then have an additional immunization for Hepatitis B to become ‘Immune’ and re-titer for HbsAB only. If after the fourth Hep B shot and second of the series HbsAB titer, the student is still ‘non-immune,’ submit all four dates of shots along with above required titers.

Students with ‘negative’ titers, after completion of the above series of Hep-B vaccinations, will be declared ‘vaccine failures’ and no further immunization series will be necessary.

In lieu of providing documentation of the Hepatitis B shot series, students declining the series must submit a Hep B Declination Form and all three (3) laboratory Hep B titers stated previously.

Please enter the dates of your vaccinations and titer, as well as of the declination (if needed), and have your healthcare provider complete, sign, and date the attached form.

Tetanus Diphtheria and Acellular Pertussis (TDaP) | Every Ten Years
Students must have a Tetanus Diphtheria and Acellular Pertussis (TDaP) vaccination, which must be within the last 10 years for compliance. No other type of Tetanus vaccination (TD) is acceptable in lieu of the TDaP.

Please enter the date of your vaccination and have your healthcare provider complete, sign, and date the form.

Tuberculosis – PPD (TB Test) or Chest X-Ray | Annual
Please note: Students must have an initial two-step PPD for compliance.

The following two-step PPD guidelines must be followed:

  • Have 2-step PPD placed.
  • Results must be read by a licensed medical provider within 48-72 hours to be accepted.
  • If initial PPD is negative, then in 1 to 3 weeks repeat PPD placement process as stated above.

If a student has a history of positive PPD or tests positive above (new conversion), it is required that they get:

  • A confirmatory TB Quantiferon Gold Test (one time).

If a student tests positive on Quantiferon Gold Test, then the student must provide documentation as to a plan of treatment which can be either:

  • Antibiotic Therapy (6 to 9 months) or Chest X-Ray (CXR) is required (every 3 years) with negative results.
  • If there is a history of the BCG vaccination, a QFT-B Test (one time) is required. No exceptions.