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COVID-19 Vaccine Guidance

We are fortunate that many of our students, faculty, and staff have been vaccinated. Please continue to adhere to all the best practices of wearing a mask, frequently washing your hands, and maintaining a distance of 6 feet or more from others.

We wanted to share some useful information with the University community regarding the vaccination requirements, as well as potential side effects of vaccine administration and what follow up steps should be taken in the event of side effects. These side effects are normal and are a sign that your body is mounting an immune response.

MBKU Vaccination & Booster Requirements

As a health professions institution, MBKU requires vaccination against COVID-19 to promote public health and support education and patient care on our campuses. Pursuant to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) order dated August 5, 2021, effective immediately, all MBKU employees and students must be vaccinated against the COVID-19 virus. 

“Vaccinated” means 2 doses for Pfizer and Moderna vaccines and 1 dose for Johnson & Johnson.

The only exemptions to this policy will be for 1) medical or 2) religious grounds. Requests for medical exemptions must be accompanied by a statement from a licensed health care provider. Requests for exemption on religious grounds must be accompanied by a statement that describes the religious or comparable belief that is the basis for the request.

An application for an exemption to the vaccination policy may be obtained from Human Resources for employees or Student Affairs for students.

Students who request an exemption from this policy must also sign Request for Waiver of Covid Policy, Agreement, Waiver, and Release form from University Student Affairs. This waiver acknowledges the possibility that timely graduation may be affected by the ability to locate rotation sites that do not require COVID-19 vaccination.

Documentation confirming vaccination or approved exemptions should be on file (HR for employees, Student Affairs for students) no later than September 30th. If you have previously submitted your vaccination card or have an approved exemption, you have already met this requirement.

In addition to documentation, unvaccinated individuals are required to 1) wear surgical or N95 masks full time and 2) be tested weekly on-campus for COVID-19. 

Previous history of COVID-19 from which the individual recovered more than 90 days earlier, or a previous positive antibody test for COVID-19, does not waive this requirement for testing. Details on the on-campus testing program will be sent separately.

PLEASE NOTE: The failure to meet the requirements of this policy will prohibit admission to the campus and may result in student suspension or termination of employment.

By following the recent CDPH order, we are taking all steps necessary to safely keep the campus open and our students on track to receive their degrees without delay.

This policy, along with masking and social distancing where practical, will help assure that we meet our mission of graduating high quality health care providers.

In compliance with the California Department of Public Health, WE ARE REQUIRING ALL THOSE WHO ARE VACCINATED TO OBTAIN A BOOSTER VACCINATION AND PROVIDE DOCUMENTATION BY FEBRUARY 1.  We recognize that if your second vaccination occurred less then 6 months ago you will need to wait to obtain the booster.

What Are Common Side Effects?

Common side effects include arm pain at the site of the injection, fever, fatigue, headache, chills, muscle ache, and joint pain. These side effects will go away in a few short days. If at all possible, schedule your vaccination prior to having some days off.  This will give you time to rest and recover. Side effects are typically worse the day after. It is also commonly reported that side effects are often more pronounced after the second dose is administered so be prepared.


  • Be sure to continue to move around and keep your circulation going and avoid being sedentary immediately following your vaccination. 
  • Over the counter medications like ibuprofen or acetaminophen can be helpful in alleviating any pain or discomfort you are experiencing. If you have allergies to these medications, consult with your physician for alternatives.
  • Be sure to drink plenty of fluids.

When Should I Call the Doctor?

In most cases, the discomfort and fever that you may experience is short-lived and normal.  However, contact your healthcare provider if:

  • The redness or soreness where you received the vaccination increases after 24 hours
  • Your side effects are worrisome to you or your side effects do not seem to be going away after a few days

Returning to Work and School After Vaccination

Because everyone is hyper-alert to any sign of being unwell or ill, we would like to share some guidelines on circumstances that are to be expected and circumstances that require further attention.

You Can Return to Work or School After Vaccination If:

  • Your symptoms include mild muscle ache, body ache, nausea, but NOT symptoms of cough, shortness of breath, runny nose, sore throat, or loss of taste or smell
  • Your symptoms develop within 2 days after receiving a COVID 19 vaccine and resolve within w days
  • You do not have a fever greater or equal to 100.3F

You Should NOT Report to Work or School AND Call Out If:

  • Your symptoms include cough, shortness of breath, runny nose, sore throat, loss of taste or smell, or a fever over 100.3o 
  • Your symptoms develop more than 2 days after receiving a COVID 19 vaccine
  • Your symptoms develop within 2 days of your vaccination but fail to resolve within 2 days of onset
  • You have had a high-risk exposure within the last 14 days

If Symptoms Prevent You From Reporting to School or Work, Please Follow the Notification Procedures Below

Notify your supervisor or program dean or director that you will be absent and stay away.  Get tested and isolate until you know your status. To remind you of key contact people, numbers, and emails we have included them below:

  • Dr. Brandon Grove: 714.463.7505 (phone) or (email)
  • SCCO Dean’s Office: 714.449.7473 (phone) or (email)
  • COP Dean’s Office: 714.872.5692 (phone) or (email)
  • SPAS Program Director’s Office: 714.882.5689 (phone) or (email)
  • Student Affairs:  714.449.7423 (phone) or  (email)
  • Human Resources: 714.449.7459 (phone) or (email)

Additional COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ

We recommend referring to the New England Journal of Medicine COVID-19 Vaccine FAQ for a collection of resources on COVID-19 vaccines, including frequently asked questions, continuing medical education, published research, and commentary.