New student health requirements: Fall 2020
Welcome, new students!
All students taking six or more credits must complete Cornell’s new student health requirements process, which includes providing health history information and documentation that you've received required immunizations. (If you have been a Cornell student in the past, you may have already met some requirements.)
UPDATE: Completing your immunization requirements during COVID-19
Students taking in-person classes this fall:
- You must complete your immunization requirements during the fall semester if you were not able to do so before coming to campus (EXCEPTION: the TDAP, Varicella, and TB deadline has been extended to spring 2021). We are not accessing a penalty for those who missed the requirements deadline.
- UPDATE: We are only able to provide MMR and Meningococcal at Cornell Health due to a recent reallocation of staff and resources toward COVID-19 testing and care. (Holds will be assessed for not meeting the MMR and Meningococcal requirements.)
- Please contact our Requirements Office at email@example.com or 607-255-4364 for guidance about what requirements you still need to complete, and how to receive outstanding immunizations.
Students participating in distance learning this fall:
- If you are away from campus this fall and engaged in distance learning, you are strongly encouraged – but not required – to upload any immunization documents you have now.
- The deadline to complete all immunization requirements before spring 2021 in-person study begins is December 20, 2020.
STEP 1: Preparing your information
Please plan ahead! This process involves a number of steps and may take several weeks.
(1) Log in to myCornellHealth to review your medical clearance list and complete preliminary forms.
- Requires activated Cornell NetID and Two-Step Login. Please allow two working days after you activate your NetID for Cornell Health to receive your information from the Registrar.
- Once you log in, go to “Medical Clearances.”
- Complete and submit the first two forms (“New Student Health History” and “Personal & Emergency Contact Information”).
- NOTE: Once you submit your “Personal & Emergency Contact Information” form, additional forms may be added to your list if you are an international student, NCAA athlete, or vet school student.
(2) Schedule a physical examination with your health care provider (required for NCAA athletes, recommended for other students).
- Print the Physical Examination form (pdf) for your health care provider to complete and sign.
- Recruited NCAA athletes must also have their Sports Clearance form (pdf) signed by their health care provider.
- During your appointment, you can also complete #3 and #4, below.
(3) Obtain your official immunization records for submission to Cornell Health. Students from these countries (pdf) must also obtain TB test records (see details below).
- Medical, school, and military records in English are accepted.
- If you wish, you can have your health care provider complete an Immunization Documentation form (pdf) so you can submit it as official documentation.
(4) Receive any additional required immunizations / TB testing you may need, and consider getting recommended immunizations.
- Required and recommended immunizations are listed below, and in the Immunization Documentation form (pdf) (optional for your health care provider to complete).
- Students from these countries (pdf) must also have a recent TB test (see details below).
- Be sure to get official documentation of any new immunizations / TB testing so you can submit it to Cornell Health.
STEP 2: Submitting your information to Cornell Health
Log back in to myCornellHealth:
- Go to “Medical Clearances.”
- Complete / submit any remaining forms listed, and enter immunization / test information.
- Upload official documentation (in English, from a health care provider, school, or military) for each immunization / test you enter.
- If you are unable to upload records, you may fax them to 607-255-0269, or mail them to: Cornell Health / ATTN: Requirements Office / 110 Ho Plaza / Ithaca, NY 14853-3101.
You must provide information and official documentation demonstrating that you have met the following New York State and Cornell requirements.
You must have either:
1. Combination vaccine: two doses of live vaccine administered on or after the first birthday
- OR -
2. Individual immunizations:
- MEASLES: two doses of live vaccine administered on or after the first birthday; or protective-antibody titer positive result; or physician-diagnosed history of disease
- MUMPS: two doses of live vaccine administered on or after the first birthday; or protective-antibody titer positive result; or physician-diagnosed history of disease
- RUBELLA: one dose of live vaccine; or protective-antibody titer positive result (NOTE: previous clinical diagnosis of Rubella is not acceptable proof)
Meningococcal vaccination / waiver
You must have one of the following:
- Meningococcal conjugate (ACWY) vaccination (within 5 years)
- Meningococcal B vaccine, and complete the series
- Meningococcal Vaccination Waiver form (pdf) submitted through myCornellHealth
Tetanus, diphteria, and pertussis
You must have had one Tdap vaccine (age 10 or later). If Tdap was more than 10 years ago, tetanus booster within past 10 years is also required.
Varicella (Chicken Pox)
You must have one of the following:
- Vaccine (2 doses of live vaccine administered on or after the 1st birthday, at least 28 days apart)
- Physician-diagnosed illness
- Protective antibody titer
- If you were born in the U.S. before 1980, the Varicella requirement does not apply
Tuberculosis (TB) screening (required for some international students)
Following public health and college health guidelines, Cornell requires full-time students from these countries (pdf) with “high incidence” of TB to provide documentation of results from a recent TB screening blood test.
We recommend but do not require TB screening for students who have spent time in any of the listed countries.
If you are from a country with a “high incidence” of TB:
- Only a Quantiferon-TB Gold or T-SPOT blood test will be accepted. Skin tests do not meet this requirement.
- If your TB test result is positive, you also must submit a chest x-ray report (no films, please).
- Date of test(s):
- Students entering in the summer or fall of 2020: your test must be dated September 1, 2019 or later
- Students entering in spring 2021: your test must be dated February 1, 2020 or later
Recommended immunizations & additional documentation
While not required, we encourage you to receive these vaccinations recommended by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the American College Health Association:
- Hepatitis A
- Hepatitis B
- Human Papilloma Virus (HPV) (under age 27)
If you have received any of these (or other) immunizations, please upload documentation to “Upload Immun. Records.”
Submitting additional documentation / health records
Students are encouraged to send us additional health records regarding chronic and/or ongoing health conditions, if applicable. Examples might include test results, consultation reports, summary reports, or recent visit notes.
If you have additional documentation or health records you would like to submit, please send by attachment by logging in to myCornellHealth and selecting Messages > New Message > Send a Message or Attachment to Health Records.
Your health requirements information must be submitted to Cornell Health by the following dates:
- Fall semester entrants: June 15, 2020
- Fall semester transfer students: July 31, 2020
- Spring semester entrants: December 20, 2020
Please see the message at the top of this page about meeting requirements deadlines during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Due to high volume, Cornell Health may take up to 3-4 weeks to review your information. If we discover any problems, we will send an email to your Cornell address, directing you to read a secure message at myCornellHealth.
How to confirm your compliance status
When you have met your immunization requirements, we will update your status on your New Student To Do List (due to high volume, the review of all of your documents may take up to 3-4 weeks). Additionally, please note:
- When you submit a form through myCornellHealth, the status for that item may change to "Compliant." This does not mean that your information has been reviewed and approved by Cornell Health staff.
- The Medical Clearances menu option in myCornellHealth may continue to say "Not Satisfied" after you've submitted all of your forms and documentation. This prompt can be ignored; it will continue to appear as long as any non-required items remain on your list.
- The To Do list indicates immunization compliance only. You may have additional forms you must submit as well (if you are missing any, we will email you; see below).
If your materials are found not to be in compliance, we will send an email to your Cornell address directing you to log in to myCornellHealth to retrieve a secure message about what’s is missing from your information and/or documentation.
What to do if you can't meet your requirements
We expect students to meet their requirements before coming to Cornell. But if you are unable to do so – or you are unable to provide official documentation demonstrating that you have met your requirements – you must meet with our Requirements staff as soon as you arrive on campus so they can review your records and help you make a plan for getting required immunizations / TB screening.
Call 607-255-4364 during business hours to consult with our Requirements staff.
- Charges for required immunizations and TB screening tests are covered by Cornell’s Student Health Plan (nearly all international students are on SHP) and Student Health Plan Plus (SHP+).
- Charges are not covered by Cornell’s Ithaca Student Health Fee. If you have private health insurance, you will be charged for the required immunizations / testing (may cost up to $900), and then may submit the bill to your insurance company for possible reimbursement.
About the new student health requirements process
Cornell Health oversees the university's New Student Health Requirements process, through which you will provide information required to comply with state and federal laws, meet public health guidelines, and support optimal health care for you during your time at Cornell.
The information you provide, as well as all health care you receive at Cornell Health, is confidential. Health care records are accessible only to Cornell Health’s workforce.
If you have additional questions, refer to our Health Requirements FAQ.
If you have a question or concerns that are not addressed in the FAQ, please contact our Requirements Office at firstname.lastname@example.org or 607-255-4364. Note that during high-volume times, it may take staff members several days to respond.