Students - Is vaccination on your to do list?

2 Sep 2021 02:07 PM

It has been a challenging year for everyone. Students and staff are returning to campuses around the UK and vaccinations are more important than ever. Everyone over the age of 16 years is eligible for the COVID-19 vaccine. 

Being up to date with all vaccinations is important for all of us, but even more so for students starting university who will be meeting, mixing and living with lots of new people. Universities can be hot spots for measles, mumps, and meningococcal disease as well as COVID-19 as they present the perfect opportunity for infections to spread. 

One in five young adults who start university for the first time this autumn will have missed routine vaccines earlier in life that protects against potentially fatal conditions.

Tick list for getting back together 

Before leaving for university  

  1. Two doses of MMR vaccine    
  2. One dose of MenACWY~                  
  3. Two doses of COVID-19 vaccine 
    (16 and 17 first dose with second pending) 
  4. Two doses of HPV vaccination*       
  5. Know the signs and symptoms of meningitis and septicaemia  
  6. Know how to seek medical advice 

Once you get to university you should 

  1. Register with a GP as soon as you can – don’t wait until you have a problem 
  2. Arrange with your GP to catch up on any vaccines you have missed
    (COVID-19 may be given in walk in centres) 

~up to 25th birthday 

*for female students up to 25 years of age, male students who are MSM can have the HPV vaccine up to 45 years of age at STD clinics 

Do you need to add vaccination to your to do list?  

Everyone who can be vaccinated must take up the offer as this helps to protect vulnerable people who can’t be vaccinated for several reasons. Being fully vaccinated helps to stop the transmission of infectious diseases and helps protect you, your family, your student peers and lecturers. 

To find out if your vaccinations are up to date please contact your GP surgery. 

COVID-19 vaccinations 

Anyone aged 18 years or older should have two doses of the COVID-19 vaccine to protect them against serious disease and hospitalisation. If you want to know more please visit   

If you have had one COVID-19 vaccine dose, at least 8 weeks ago, you should arrange to have your second dose as soon as possible. Having the second dose is important for longer protection.  

All 16 to 17-year-olds will also be offered the first dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine. Advice on when to have the second vaccine dose will come later. 

Whilst some people do still get COVID-19 infection after vaccination, their symptoms are usually much milder and they are less likely to have complications. Students who have certain health conditions may be offered a booster COVID-19 vaccination during the 2021 to 2022 academic year. We are encouraging students to remain vigilant.  

Be prepared to follow the guidance in your university and town or city. Face masks are still required in certain settings. In accommodation keep bedrooms and common rooms clean and well aired by opening windows where possible. 

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