Fordham Updates Vaccination Requirements


Fordham updates vaccine requirements. (Courtesy of Flickr)

On Sept. 26, Fordham announced that all students, faculty and staff must receive a COVID-19 bivalent booster vaccination by Nov. 1. The Center for Disease Prevention and Control (CDC) now considers a “fully vaccinated” individual to have the original vaccination set and the “most recent” booster shot.

Bivalent booster shots are essentially updated COVID-19 vaccine boosters. They are formulated to protect against the omicron variant and other newer strains of the virus. The bivalent shots include two mRNA strains of the virus. They have one strain from the original COVID-19 virus, just like previous vaccinations, and they also include a strain from the omicron variant.

According to the email sent out by Fordham on Sept. 26, “individuals 12 and older are eligible for the updated (bivalent) booster that is effective against multiple COVID variants, and in order to be considered up to date with vaccines, they should receive the updated booster if it has been 2 months or longer since their last COVID-19 vaccine.”

The university has both Pfizer and Moderna bivalent booster vaccinations. The vaccination clinic is in O’Hare Hall across from the Ram Van pick-up site.

Bob Howe, associate vice president for communications and special adviser to the president, said that vaccination is a large reason why the pandemic has slowed, so it’s important to continue vaccinating.

“To the extent that the pandemic’s lethality has been blunted, it is because of widespread vaccination for COVID-19. People are still getting sick, but the percentage of those who require hospitalization or who die is much lower — this, by itself, is reason enough to require everyone on campus to be vaccinated and boosted,” said Howe.

Howe noted that it’s important to consider university community members who have medical conditions that make COVID-19 a large concern.

“Also, the university community is composed of more than just students, obviously, and there are many faculty and staff (and some students) who are vulnerable because of their age and other factors,” said Howe.

Many university community members who have medical conditions echo Howe’s sentiments. Claire Bickel, FCRH ’24, is a Type 1 diabetic.

“I feel safer knowing that the university is taking the recommended steps to protect the community,” said Bickel.
Other students are also glad that Fordham is requiring vaccinations.

“I like that Fordham is requiring the new booster because it makes the campus a more secure and safe place for those that are immunocompromised,”said Malvi Patel, FCRH ’24.

Howe said that the university made the decision to require another booster shot based on the advice of medical professionals.

“We follow this advice for the health and safety of our students, faculty and staff. As an institution that practices care for the whole person, we can’t do otherwise,” said Bob Howe.