Policy on

Medical Clearance Screening and Required Immunizations

At the Zucker School of Medicine, all students are required to complete an initial medical clearance screening prior to matriculation, and subsequent medical clearance screenings annually, in accordance with the Policy on Medical Student Compliance. Compliance with medical clearance screenings and required immunizations is monitored by Northwell Health Employee Health Services (EHS). Immunization requirements are determined by the Zucker School of Medicine and Northwell Health, in accordance with national and/or regional recommendations. All medical clearance services are offered to Zucker School of Medicine students by EHS at no charge.

The initial medical clearance screening takes place prior to matriculation and includes, but is not necessarily limited to the following:

  1. Physical Examination and Medical History Review

    All matriculating students will be offered a physical examination and medical history review by EHS. Students may obtain this medical evaluation from their private healthcare provider at their own expense. EHS will evaluate all physical exams and medical history reviews conducted by private healthcare providers.

  2. Tuberculosis Screening

    Latent TB infection can be screened using either of the following NYSDOH methods:

    • 2 Step Tuberculin Skin Testing (TST)
    • Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved blood assays for the detection of latent TB Infection (e.g., QuantiFERON TB Gold)

    Those with a prior history of latent TB must provide documentation of a previously positive TB Screening from a healthcare provider and a standard chest x-ray result on an official Radiology report indicating "no active disease," performed on or after the date of the Latent TB diagnosis.
    If such documentation is not available, the student will be screened for TB. Verbal self-reporting of a positive TB history alone is not acceptable proof.

  3. Required Immunizations

    Proof of COVID-19 vaccination

    • Students must provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination after second dose of the Moderna or Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine or a single dose of the Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine
    • Exemptions for Zucker School of Medicine students must be approved by both Northwell Health and Hofstra University
    • No exemptions will be granted to visiting medical students.

    Proof of immunity or adequate vaccination to Measles, Mumps, Rubella, Varicella and Tetanus/Diphtheria/Pertussis

    • Proof of immunity can be satisfied by a Certificate of Immunization or an official laboratory report with titer results indicating immunity
    • For Varicella only, documented proof of previous diagnosis is acceptable.

    Proof of Meningococcal vaccination or a signed declination

    • Certification that the student has already received immunization against meningococcal meningitis within ten years preceding the date of matriculation or a signed declination is required to be on file if the student declines as per section 2167 of the NYSDOH Immunization Handbook for New York State Post-Secondary Institutions. Students declining this vaccination will be required to follow current EHS protocol for patient care settings and Hofstra University protocol for classroom settings.

  4. Recommended Immunizations
    • Vaccination to Hep B is strongly recommended.  Proof of immunity to Hepatitis B can be satisfied by a Certificate of Immunization or an Official laboratory report on letterhead with titer results indicating immunity.

  5. Drug Testing
    • Drug Testing Specimen Collection must be completed at an approved Northwell site utilizing the Northwell Health EHS Drug testing requisition.
    • The Medical Review Officer (MRO) will review any positive drug test results in conjunction with the document(s) supporting any offered medical explanation. The MRO will submit an evaluation regarding whether the specimen is "negative" or "positive" for suspected substance misuse as defined in the Northwell Health's Substance Misuse policy.

  6. Respirator Medical Evaluation and Respirator Fit Testing
    • Medical students have the potential to work in areas where they may be exposed to airborne transmissible diseases which requires respirator protection. Students are required to complete an initial respirator medical evaluation. Students will be evaluated by an EHS clinical staff member to determine if the student can be fit tested for a respirator or if the student must wear protective gear.

The annual medical clearance screenings take place every 12 months following matriculation and include, but are not necessarily limited to the following:

  1. Annual EHS Health Assessment
  2. Tuberculosis Screening (refer to #2 above)
  3. Respirator Fit Testing (refer to #6 above)
  4. Proof of Influenza Vaccination or Signed Declination (annual deadline is December 1 inclusive of first year). Students declining this vaccination will be required to wear a mask in patient care settings during influenza season, per NY State regulations.

References to Regulations and/or Other Related Policies:
LCME Element 12.7: Immunization Requirements and Monitoring
Policy on Medical Student Compliance

Last updated: September 2021