Johns Hopkins University continues mandatory flu shot policy

EDITOR’S NOTE: This story has been updated to reflect that the flu shot policy at Hopkins is not new this year.

This year, Johns Hopkins University is continuing its mandatory flu shot policy.

Proof of vaccination against seasonal influenza will be required to work or attend classes at Johns Hopkins University on any of its Baltimore or D.C. area campuses.

This is the second year for the policy.

The institution’s website states the policy was created in response to the COVID-19 pandemic in the interest of ensuring the safety of the school community and surrounding communities.

“Having as many students, faculty, and staff as possible vaccinated for both COVID-19 and the flu, in conjunction with other health and hygiene policies, is vital to the safety of our community,” the university website states.

Anyone in the Johns Hopkins Community who is requesting a religious or medical exception to receiving the flu vaccine will need to submit the request by Nov. 9; it could take a few weeks to process.

Nov 19. is the deadline for everyone to submit either the exemption or proof of vaccination.

Not on campus? Don’t worry about it.

“Note that the mandate outlined in this message does not apply to JHU employees 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,” the website states.

In D.C., American University told WTOP it is making extensive efforts to encourage students and staff to get the flu shot this year. It has set up several flu shot clinics on campus in order to make it easier to get the vaccine.

The George Washington University in D.C. is among area colleges offering free flu vaccinations to people on campus.

“While the university is not requiring students, faculty and staff to get the flu vaccine this semester, the university is following the CDC guidance that strongly encourages individuals to get a flu vaccine every season to prevent flu and its potentially serious complications,” GW’s
website states.

George Mason University in Fairfax, Virginia, has no plans to initiate a flu vaccine policy.

Kristi King

Kristi King is a veteran reporter who has been working in the WTOP newsroom since 1990. She covers everything from breaking news to consumer concerns and the latest medical developments.

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