The optometric training program requires classroom, laboratory and clinical training. Therefore, an ICO student is not only considered a “student” in the traditional definition of a student enrolled in an institution of higher education but also a health care provider. So, the ICO student has to consider their obligations, as it pertains to disease control, to themselves and their colleagues but also, more importantly, to their patients. The student also needs be prepared to meet their obligation to patients not to be a source of infectious disease in several settings including the Illinois Eye Institute, hospitals, private practices, and other multidisciplinary sites. Therefore, ICO’s requirements for proof of immunity reflect the state’s requirements for college students but also other requirements for health care workers.
In response to state law, the Centers for Disease Control recommendations, OSHA regulations and other related standards, the College requires certain immunizations and tests. Prior to entering ICO students are required to provide proof of immunity to Varicella, measles, mumps, rubella, and a current booster for tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis (1).
Also prior to entry, students are required to have had 2 stage skin testing for tuberculosis administered and interpreted between March and August of the year of entry. Subsequently, each year a TB test (2) is required and will be administered by the College.
The vaccinations for the Hepatitis B Virus (2) are recommended prior to entering the program, but are required prior to the beginning of the second professional year. Due to the length of time involved in completing this series of vaccinations, it is highly recommended that students complete it before coming to ICO.
If you have specific questions about required pre-matriculation immunizations may be directed to the Senior Director of Student Development at x7415. Since immunization records are kept with the student record, any requests for this information should be directed to the Office of the Registrar.
1 The Illinois College Immunization Law specifies proof of immunity for measles, mumps, rubella and diphtheria/tetanus. The College Registrar, Mrs. Lavern Young, is required by law to officially report compliance. If a student chooses not to complete the Immunization Record by the end of the first quarter that student cannot by law register for the next quarter.
2 Annual TB tests, the HBV vaccinations, and Varicella titer, proof of immunization while not included in the state immunization law, are required by the College. The consequences for not complying with these College requirements may include suspension from the academic program and or prohibition from clinical activities.