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Clinical placement checks and clearances

Vaccination and immunisation

Requirements

The requirements are outlined under a NSW Ministry of Health policy directive and the Public Health (COVID-19 Vaccination of Health Care Workers) Order 2021 (pdf, 250KB).

You will need to have completed vaccinations before you start your placement and show evidence of protection against the following infectious diseases:

*Carrying Hepatitis B does not necessarily preclude you from meeting NSW Ministry of Health verification requirements.

If you have not already had the required vaccinations you need to complete this process which can take up to six months. Vaccinations and advice are available through the University Health Service at the Camperdown Campus.

If you are a higher degree by research student, check the requirements below and contact the Office of Clinical Education Support at fmh-hdr.verification@sydney.edu.au as they will manage the submission of your documents to NSW Health.

Tuberculosis (TB) screening

TB testing will be required if you meet any of the following criteria.

The above criteria also apply to higher degree by research students attending a NSW Health facility.

The University Health Service offers TB screening. Both an IGRA (QUANTAFERON GOLD test) and Mantoux Skin Test are acceptable evidence you have been tested for TB under the Occupational Screening Policy (2018). Depending on your result, you may be required to have a chest x‐ray.

If you're a student visa holder and had a chest x-ray when you applied for your student visa, you will still need to have a TB screening if you meet any of the above criteria. Chest X-rays only show active or infectious tuberculosis. You may have latent or silent tuberculosis which does not show on a chest x‐ray. Latent or silent tuberculosis does not cause any symptoms but can progress to active or infectious tuberculosis.

Attending placements if you need TB screening

If you are in the first year of your degree you can be granted a 6 month temporary compliant status, and can attend placements during this 6‐month period, provided you have:

  • completed all other vaccination requirements (including at least one documented dose of hepatitis B vaccine)
  • submitted your criminal record check to Student Verification for processing.

You need to complete your hepatitis B vaccination schedule and tuberculosis screening during this six‐month period or your temporary verification will lapse.

You can't attend a placement after this six‐month period until you show evidence you have completed your hepatitis B vaccination schedule and TB screening.

Influenza Vaccination

If you are allocated to a placement in any of the high risk areas, you are required by the NSW Ministry of Health to show evidence that you have had the most recent influenza vaccination. This is due to the potential for serious health problems for vulnerable people who catch influenza. High risk areas include:

  • intensive care units
  • antenatal, perinatal and postnatal areas including labour wards and antenatal outreach programs (before, during and after delivery of babies)
  • neonatal intensive care units and home visiting services provided to neonates (newborn children less than four weeks old)
  • paediatric (child) intensive care units
  • transplant and oncology (cancer) wards.

As you may not know in advance of placement allocation if you will be placed in a high risk area, we strongly recommend you have a flu vaccination as soon as possible each year.

If you do not have suitable evidence that you have had the vaccination, you will be expected to wear a face mask or may be relocated to another clinical area for your placement. Where these options are not viable your placement may be cancelled.

Government-funded influenza vaccines will start to become available from mid-April 2021.

Evidence of your influenza vaccination

When you have your vaccination, you need to request documentation of your vaccination from your health care provider. You should also have your local doctor or vaccination nurse update the information on your NSW Health Adult Vaccination Record.

Student Placements and COVID-19

On 26 August 2021, the NSW Government issued the Public Health (COVID-19 Vaccination of Health Care Workers) Order 2021 (pdf, 250KB).

The Order establishes mandatory requirements for health staff and people working in certain health settings to be vaccinated with a COVID-19 vaccine, including students on placement. 

To undertake a NSW Health clinical placement or a placement in one of the other health settings covered by the Order, you will need to have your first dose of a vaccine by 30 September 2021, with a second dose required by 30 November 2021. You will need to provide evidence of vaccination from the Australian Immunisation Register.

Other settings covered by the Order include private hospitals and day procedure centres.

An exemption is available for people who are unable to be vaccinated due to a medical contraindication. Evidence of a medical contraindication must be provided via a certificate from a medical practitioner in a form (pdf, 233KB) approved by the Chief Health Officer that specifies the contraindication.

If you are allocated to a NSW Health clinical placement, it is important that you need to prioritise any mandatory vaccinations as per the following NSW Health policy:

This includes the 2021 influenza vaccine for students scheduled to attend placements in high-risk category A areas.

The National Centre for Immunisation Research and Surveillance (NCIRS) recommends that people should wait at least 7 days between a dose of seasonal flu vaccine and a dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

You may visit the NSW Government Health Education and Training website for more information on Student Placements and COVID-19 FAQs.

Blood borne virus declaration (Medicine, Dentistry and Oral Health students)

Commencing students in the disciplines of medicine, dentistry or oral health will need to complete the Attachment 1 blood borne virus declaration form (pdf, 58KB) and have it verified by NSW Health before your first clinical placement. You will need to repeat this process every three years.

Refer to the Information for healthcare students who perform exposure prone procedures (pdf, 97KB).

Last updated: 24 November 2021

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