Johns Hopkins University is once again requiring students, faculty, and staff to receive an annual influenza vaccine this fall.
The requirement for the 2023-24 academic year extends a mandate that has been in place since 2020 and comes after a summertime increase in the number of COVID-19 cases across the country, with other respiratory viruses, such as the flu and RSV, expected to affect the campus community this fall and winter.
"Having as many students, faculty, and staff as possible vaccinated against the flu, in conjunction with other health and infection prevention policies, is vital to the safety of our community," wrote Kevin Shollenberger, vice provost for student health and well-being, and Meredith Stewart, interim vice president for human resources, in a message sent Sept. 5 to all JHU students, trainees, postdoctoral fellows, faculty, and staff.
The mandate applies to those who are working or studying in-person on a JHU campus; it does not apply to affiliates who are 100% remote—that is, those who never visit any Johns Hopkins facility or conduct business in any public setting on Johns Hopkins' behalf. Johns Hopkins Medicine and Applied Physics Laboratory employees are subject to their respective policies and procedures. School of Medicine affiliates follow JHM policies and procedures.
This year's deadline to upload proof of receiving the vaccine to the Vaccine Management System (VMS) is Friday, Nov. 17.
Where to get a flu shot
- On-site clinics: The flu vaccine will be available to students and employees at a series of on-site JHU clinics listed on the mandatory vaccine flu policy webpage. Affiliates are asked to complete an informed consent form and bring their JHU identification with them.
- Pharmacies and doctor's offices: Affiliates can get vaccinated at local pharmacy or by their primary care physician through insurance at no cost. Information about JHU insurance coverage for students and for faculty and staff is available online.
- Walgreens: Beginning mid-September, all JHU faculty and staff can get the flu vaccination for free at any Walgreens location using the JHU flu vaccine voucher, available soon at the VMS website. Print the voucher or display it on your phone at the time of service. No appointment is necessary. Please complete the vaccination form prior to your appointment. Walgreens clinics, including those on campus, will automatically upload your proof of vaccination to the Vaccine Management System.
Proof of Vaccination
If you receive the flu vaccine anywhere other than at a JHU-sponsored vaccine clinic or at Walgreens with your flu voucher, you must upload proof of immunization to the VMS. This applies even if the doctor/doctor's office that gave you the vaccine is within the Johns Hopkins network. At a minimum, the submission should include a clear scan or photo of a record that includes your name, the date of vaccination, and the vaccination location (e.g., Giant, CVS, or the name of the physician's office). If you didn't get a receipt and you got your vaccine in Maryland, you can download proof of your flu shot from the Maryland myIR.com website.
It may take up to two weeks for your outside flu vaccination to be processed and for you to receive a confirmation email. You can check your status in the VMS at any time.
Anyone requesting a religious or medical exception to the flu vaccine must submit their request to the VMS by Tuesday, Oct. 31. It may take up to two weeks for your exception request to be reviewed. You must obtain an approved medical or religious exception by Sunday, Nov. 19.
Questions that are not answered by the flu vaccine policy website can be emailed to firstname.lastname@example.org.