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Occupational Health


Occupational Health provides a number of vaccination programmes. The arrangements for enrolment vary according to the programme.

Work where vaccination may be required

Risk assessments for the following work should consider the need for vaccination

  • Culturing or handling of human pathogens or purified biological toxins
  • Handling or processing of human blood, serum or tissue specimens
  • Contact with patients or work in clinical areas of hospitals
  • Fieldwork outside the UK
  • Travel other than to Northern Europe, North America or Australasia

For any specific advice contact occupational health


  • Heads of Department should ensure Principal Investigators, Course Organisers and others in managerial charge of work or study programmes that may involve any of above work.
  • Where vaccination is used as a control measure, this should be documented in the risk assessment
  • The person-in-charge of new work or study programmes for which vaccination will be needed should inform the Occupational Health of the work.
  • The person in charge of the work should ensure staff & students are informed of the need for vaccination & arrangements for getting vaccinated.

Obtaining vaccinations

Occupational Health is responsible assessing the immunity and the need for vaccination of staff and students where the need arises out of:

  • work undertaken to fulfil job / study requirements
  • travel overseas on University business
  • to meet the requirements of an NHS Trust for award of an honorary contract or Research Passport to obtain immunisation clearance for contact with patients or to work in clinical areas
  • to meet health and safety requirements of another organisation visited in connection with work or study commitments.

Occupational Health does not provide vaccinations for:

  • leisure or sporting activities.
  • student expeditions, unless a required component of a teaching or research programme.
  • holiday travel except for holiday taken as an extension of an overseas trip on University business.
  • personal health reasons incidental to work e.g., annual influenza vaccination of vulnerable individuals.

Work with pathogens or biological agents

Vaccination requirements should be established and where necessary agreed with occupational health during the risk assessment and approval procedure for such work.

Only individuals involved in direct handling of material which poses risk of infection will need vaccinated.  Where however, the risk to others who may present in the laboratory is considered great enough that they should also be vaccinated the person in charge of the work must ensure that all at risk are informed of the vaccination recommendations

All staff and students involved in the project should complete a Biological Agents Health Assessment Questionnaire and send this to Occupational Health.

After receiving a questionnaire Occupational Health will notify the individual and supervisor/line manager whether the individual needs to attend Occupational Health for vaccination. The individual should then contact Occupational Health to make an appointment.

Completing the questionnaire:

  • New staff Occupational Health can be notified that the person will be working with biological agents using the Job Hazard Form. Occupational Health will then contact the person with instructions for completing the Biological Agents Health Assessment Questionnaire. Once this is received Occupational Health will make an appointment for an assessment and vaccination if needed.
  • Existing staff and research students should download the Biological Agents Health Assessment Questionnaire complete this and send it to Occupational Health will make an appointment for an assessment and vaccination if needed.
  • Undergraduate and taught post-graduate students selecting a project for which immunisation is recommended should complete Biological Agents Health Assessment Questionnaire and send this to Occupational Health as soon as their project has been confirmed.

Vaccinations for Research Passports

Staff or research students who will be involved in patient care or who require NHS health clearance to work in or visit health care institutions should complete a Research Passport questionnaire and arrange a health clearance appointment with Occupational Health. They should bring to the appointment any documentary evidence of prior vaccinations or tests of immunity.

Travel vaccinations

The need for vaccination will be determined by the risk assessment completed for overseas travel.  For travelling on fieldwork see related safety information

Travel clinic appointments should whenever feasible be made at least one month in advance of the time of travel to ensure vaccination schedules can be completed before travel.

Student-led non-University overseas activities the OH Service is unable to provide vaccinations. Advice should be sought at the planning stage so that costs of vaccinations can be included in costing for grant applications.


Occupational Health does not charge for vaccinations where staff require these for work involved with biological agents nor for travel health clinic appointments and advice.  Occupational Health does however charge the student directly for vaccines and/or malaria prophylaxis provided to students for elective placements or for travel abroad.  Occupational Health is not responsible for re-imbursement of expenses incurred for vaccinations or malaria prophylaxis.  Please contact Occupational Health for current costs.