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Animal and veterinary science vaccinations

If you’re enrolling in a course in Animal or Veterinary Science, you will come into contact with animals during your program. To ensure your safety, your tetanus vaccination needs to be current and you may need to undergo screening for Q fever and if required be vaccinated.

For the courses listed below, it is an inherent course requirement that you undergo Q fever screening and vaccination (where medically indicated) and that your tetanus vaccination is up to date.

  • Bachelor of Veterinary Biology and Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
  • Doctor of Veterinary Medicine
  • Bachelor of Science and Bachelor of Advanced Studies (Animal and Veterinary Bioscience)

For all other courses, vaccination requirements are determined by unit of study selections. You will require Q fever screening and vaccination (where medically indicated) if you are enrolled in one of the units listed in the table below.

Level Units of study
1000 level AVBS1002
2000 level AVBS2001, AVBS2006, AVBS2007, AVBS2011, AVBS2012, AVBS2013, AVBS2014
3000 level ANSC3100, ANSC3102, ANSC3106, ANSC3888, AVBS3000, AVBS3001, AVBS3011, AVBS3888, WILD3001, WILD3888
4000 level AVBS4000, AVBS4002, ANSC4100, WILD4001, WILD4002
6000 level VETS6101, VETS6102, VETS6103, VETS6104, VETS6105, VETS6106, VETS6107, VETS6108, VETS6201, VETS6202, VETS6203, VETS6204, VETS6205, VETS6206, VETS6207, VETS6208, VETS6301, VETS6302, VETS6303, VETS6304, VETS6313, VETS6314, VETS6401, VETS6402, VETS6403, VETS6404, VETS6405, VETS6406, VETS6407, VETS6408, VETS6409, VETS6410, VETS6411, VETS6412

Failure to provide evidence of Q fever screening and vaccination will result in students being unable to complete required components of the course.

Q fever

Q fever is a zoonotic disease transmitted to humans predominantly from cattle, sheep and goats. It is caused by the bacterium Coxiella burnetii which is released into the environment through faeces, urine, milk, and birth products from infected animals.

In humans, the bacterium causes severe disease. About half of the people exposed to it experience flu-like symptoms, with 40% of them requiring hospital care. Q fever can lead to chronic fatigue syndrome, chronic heart conditions, chronic hepatitis, and in children it can cause bone marrow necrosis - a disease that affects the normal growth of the bone. Some infected people die.

Vaccination is the most effective way to prevent infection. Screening is required to identify who can be vaccinated. More information about Q fever is available in the NSW Health Q fever fact sheet.

You need to follow these steps to meet your Q fever immunity requirements:

Q fever pre-screening and vaccination

Pre-vaccination screening involves an initial consultation, blood test and a skin test followed by vaccination if eligible. These visits should be 7 days apart and if eligible, vaccination can be given at the second appointment. Further information on the Q Fever process is available on the NSW Health website.

Finding a vaccinator and vaccination costs

Q Fever pre-screening and vaccination is available to students through Dr Susan Willis at the University Health Service, Camperdown Campus. The cost through the University Health Service is approximately $150.

If required you can also find list of other GPs offering the vaccine. Costs will vary depending on the service that you use (and can cost up to $500). We recommend that you enquire about any associated costs when scheduling your appointment. 

The University does not cover expenses for pre-screening or vaccinations; it is your responsibility to cover these costs.


You are responsible for ensuring that your tetanus immunisation is valid and up-to-date, and will need to provide evidence when requested.

Other vaccinations

Japanese Encephalitis Virus Vaccine

In NSW, the Japanese encephalitis virus vaccine is free and recommended for people who live in any part of NSW and work live, or are visiting a piggery including farm workers and their families (including children aged 2 months and older) living at the piggery, pig transport workers, veterinarians (including veterinary students and nurses) and others involved in the care of pigs.

It is also recommended for people who spend significant time outdoors for unavoidable work, recreation, education, or other essential activities. 

You can find the latest government information on eligibility for free vaccines.

The Australian Immunisation Handbook includes details about vaccinations for individuals who have frequent contact with animals. Please consult your GP to determine if additional vaccinations are advisable for your specific situation.

Further information

If you have any questions, contact your Education Support Team:

Veterinary Science Education Support

School of Life and Environmental Sciences (SOLES) Education

Last updated: 23 April 2024

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