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Immunization Policy

Southwest Georgia Technical College strongly encourages all students to seek immunization for preventable diseases – especially measles, mumps, and rubella.  Information related to immunizations is published in the 2012 - 2013 SWGTC Catalog and Student Handbook, page 207-208, and can be accessed by clicking on the following link: SWGTC Current and Archived Catalog and Student Handbooks and then selecting the appropriate SWGTC Catalog (based on when the student was admitted to their program of study).


Diphtheria and Tetanus: Routine immunization against diphtheria, tetanus, and pertussis (whopping cough) in childhood has been common practice in the United States for the past 30 years. If you didn’t get your “baby shots,” primary immunization can be done as an adult in a series of three shots. It is recommended that all persons who have had primary immunization receive booster doses every 10 years. Under certain condi­tions, such as treatment of a puncture wound or an unclean wound, more frequent injections may be indicated.


Measles (Rubeola) Vaccine: Rubella is a common childhood rash disease, and childhood cases are often overlooked or misdiagnosed because signs and symptoms vary. The most common features of rubella include enlarged lymph nodes, joint pain, and a transient rash usually with low fever. Rubella vaccine has been available since 1969, and it is recommended that everyone receive a vaccination, not so much to prevent the benign illness as to provide protection for women of childbearing age. If a woman becomes infected during the first three months of pregnancy, there is a risk of serious birth defects. It is recommended that you check your vaccination record, and if in doubt, we recommend a blood test for rubella antibodies. If the blood test indicates that antibodies are not present, you are susceptible to rubella; and immunization will be offered after contraception counseling. With rubella, as with other live-virus vaccines, there is a theoretical risk to the fetus if a woman is vaccinated during pregnancy.


Mumps Vaccine: Live-virus mumps vaccine was first introduced in 1967. The vaccine produces a subclinical (mild or no symptoms) noncommunicable (non “catching”) infection with very few side effects. On the other hand, mumps itself can be serious in adults, so it is important to have immunity. Mumps virus vaccine is available to anyone without history of the disease or of effective vaccination.


Hepatitis: Hepatitis is a viral disease that causes systemic infection with primary liver involvement. There is no specific treatment and the outcome of Hepatitis B is variable and can be lethal. 5 - 10% of infected persons become carriers. Vaccination is strongly recommended. The vaccine is safe, immunogenic and effective in preventing Hepatitis B. The vaccine is produced in yeast cells and is purified by chemical and physical methods and is free of human blood products.

The vaccine series is given in three (3) doses, I M only into the deltoid muscle. The three (3) doses are given as follows: a. first dose; b. second dose, one month later; and c. third dose, six months after the first dose.

Varicella (Chickenpox) Vaccine: Chickenpox is a disease caused by infection with the varicella zoster virus, which causes fever and an itchy rash. It is highly contagious and spread by coughing, sneezing, direct contact, and aerosolization of virus from skin lesions. Varicella vaccine can prevent this disease. Currently, two doses of vaccine are recommended for children and adults.

Rabies Vaccine: Rabies is an acute and deadly disease caused by a viral infection of the central nervous system. The rabies virus is most often spread by a bite and saliva from an infected (rabid) animal. The first rabies vaccine was developed in the early 1960’s. All rabies vaccines currently available for humans are made from killed rabies virus.

Pre-exposure rabies vaccines are administered by a series of three (3) injections as follows: a. first dose; b. second dose, seven (7) days later; and c. third dose, 21 or 28 days after the first dose. Booster doses are recommended every two years for those individuals who continue to be at increased risk of contracting rabies to maintain protective antibody levels.

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