Bacterial Meningitis Vaccine
Effective Jan. 1, 2012
State law requires all new enrolling students and students returning after a lapse of enrollment to show evidence of receiving a bacterial meningitis vaccination or booster dose. The vaccination must have been administered within five years of enrollment, and the latest possible date to receive the vaccine is 10 days prior to the first day of the semester.
The new law applies to undergraduate and graduate students, as outlined in Texas Senate Bill 1107 (SB1107). Students must provide proof of vaccination to the Registrar’s Office 10 days prior to the first class day of the semester. If proof is not received by this date, the student’s entire schedule will be dropped.
This requirement does not include:
- Students who are enrolled in online-only courses or other distance education offerings. These students must complete and submit the ASU Bacterial Meningitis Vaccination Exemption Form.
- Students who are 22 years of age or older.
Important Information About Bacterial Meningitis
Bacterial meningitis is a serious, potentially deadly disease that can progress extremely fast. It is an inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord. A bacterium that causes meningitis can also infect the blood. This disease strikes about 3,000 Americans each year, including students on 100–125 college campuses, leading to 5–15 deaths among college students every year. Treatment for the disease is available, but those who survive may still develop severe health problems or disabilities. The disease is transmitted when people exchange saliva (by engaging in activities such as kissing or sharing drink containers, utensils, cigarettes, toothbrushes, etc.) or come into contact with respiratory or throat secretions. For more information, read this bacterial meningitis informational page.
Evidence of Vaccination
ASU students must verify that they received the bacterial meningitis vaccination at least 10 days prior to the first day of the semester. They can submit proof of the vaccine in one of the following formats:
- A document bearing the signature or stamp of the physician or his/her designee, or public health personnel (must indicate the month, day and year the vaccination or booster dose was administered)
- An official immunization record generated from a state or local health authority (must indicate the month, day and year the vaccination or booster dose was administered)
- An official record received from officials at a school attended previously, including a record from another state (must indicate the month, day, and year the vaccination or booster dose was administered)
- The ASU Evidence of Vaccination Against Bacterial Meningitis Form
Evidence of Declined Vaccination
Students who decline the vaccination for medical reasons must submit the following documentation to the Registrar’s Office:
- 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.
Students who decline the vaccination for reasons of conscience, including religious belief, must submit the ASU Bacterial Meningitis Vaccination Exemption Form to the Registrar’s Office and The Conscientious Exemption Form from the Texas Department of State Health Services. Please be aware that this original form is the only acceptable documentation for this exemption. (No faxes will be accepted.) Because the process takes a significant amount of time, please begin well in advance of your intended registration date and allow several weeks for delivery.