Coronavirus (COVID-19)

COVID-19 vaccine exemption process

In the spring of 2021, Gov. Andrew Cuomo and SUNY Chancellor Jim Malatras adopted a policy that all SUNY students who access campus facilities in person must be vaccinated against COVID-19, with limited exceptions. All Binghamton University students must now upload proof of having received a complete COVID-19 vaccine series by Sept. 28, 2021, or obtain a medical, religious or online/remote exemption.  

A new period for the submissions of exemptions has been opened. Students may submit a request for an exemption through Sept. 3, 2021. Late submissions will not be granted. If you wish to request an exemption, follow these instructions: 

COVID-19 VACCINATION COMPLIANCE PROCESS


Students required to be vaccinated against SARS-CoV-2 shall submit proof of vaccination, or the information needed to obtain an online/remote, medical or religious waiver from the vaccine requirement, to the Decker Student Health Services Center. Submission is accomplished through the “Uploads” section of the student health portal (https://binghamton.medicatconnect.com). Students will be notified of the approval or denial of their requests via the Secure Messaging function of the student health portal.

Proof of vaccination


Proof of vaccination against the SARS-CoV-2 virus is defined as the following:

1. Copy of a vaccine record indicating receipt of all doses necessary to complete an FDA approved, or World Health Organization approved, SARS-CoV-2 vaccine series.
2. Each page of the submitted documents must have students first name and last name, and their date of birth or B-number.
3. The submitted record must include the specific name of the vaccine(s) given as shown on the first or second column of the World Health Organization’s “Status of COVID-19 Vaccines within WHO EUL/PQ evaluation process” document and the date(s) that any vaccine was given.

EXEMPTIONS FROM THE VACCINE REQUIREMENT

Students who are granted an exemption from the SARS-CoV-2 vaccine requirement are subject to special obligations to enable them to remain on-campus, as outlined in Binghamton University’s Fall 2021 Operational Guidance.

Exemptions from the COVID-19 vaccination requirement are allowed for students who are fully online/remote, for medical reasons, and for religious reasons.

Online/Remote Student Exemption

Students whose course of study is entirely web-based or fully remote may be exempted from the vaccine requirement. These students must have no physical presence on campus, including the use of on-campus services, for the entire academic term.

  • Exemption Process
    Students requesting an exemption due to online/remote status are required to submit a signed “COVID19 Remote/Online Student Attestation” to the Decker Student Health Services Center via . This form is available here.

Medical Exemption

Students with a medical contraindication to COVID-19 vaccination may be granted a waiver from the vaccine requirement. Reasonable accommodations shall be granted to these students so long as the failure to be vaccinated does not prevent the student from otherwise fulfilling the programmatic or curricular requirements of their academic program.

  • Exemption Process:
    Requests for medical exemption will be reviewed by the Medical Director, or their designee. Only contraindications noted on any future “Vaccine Information Statement” or the current “EUA Fact Sheet for Recipients” pertaining to the relevant COVID-19 vaccine will be considered valid reasons to avoid vaccination, and contraindications to one vaccine type may not be a valid reason to avoid vaccination with all COVID-19 vaccines. Students wishing a medical exemption must submit the following documentation to the Decker Student Health Services Center.
    • A written certification from a licensed medical provider which indicates the nature of the contraindication to vaccination, and the length of time the contraindication is expected to exist.
    • The certification must include the legible name, credentials, and contact information of the certifying provider.
    • Excemption requests must be submitted via the student health portal. Download the Medical Exemption Request Form here.

Religious Exemption


Students who hold genuine and sincere religious beliefs which are contrary to COVID-19 vaccination may be exempted from this requirement.

  • Exemption Process:
    Students requesting a religious exemption must submit a written statement, addressed to Binghamton University, explaining how receiving a COVID-19 vaccination conflicts with their religious beliefs or practices. General philosophical or moral objections to the COVID-19 vaccine will not result in approval of a religious exemption. The statement must be written and signed by the student, or the student’s parent/guardian if they are under the age of 18.

    Submissions which do not clearly meet the exemption criteria will be forwarded to a small committee of senior Binghamton University administrators. This group may ask for further information, or may decide to approve or deny the request. Regardless of the process used, students will be notified of the status of their request through their BMail account from the  fall2021@binghamton.edu address.

Accessing medical care

If you feel ill, do not leave your on-campus room or come to campus if you are an off-campus residing student.

  • All students with symptoms or exposure to COVID-19 should isolate and call the Decker Student Health Services Center at 607-777-2221 for consideration of diagnostic testing.
  • If Decker is closed, and you are experiencing symptoms, more information about local health facilities with after-hours care is available on the diagnostic testing page.
  • Students are responsible for the potential cost of COVID-19 testing.

COVID-19 symptoms

According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, the following may be signs of coronavirus:

  • Fever or chills
  • Cough
  • Shortness of breath or difficulty breathing
  • Fatigue
  • Muscle or body aches
  • Headache
  • New loss of taste or smell
  • Sore throat
  • Congestion or runny nose
  • Nausea or vomiting
  • Diarrhea

COVID-19 prevention

Receiving negative results from a COVID-19 test is reassuring, but remember, it is only a snapshot in time. A negative test today doesn’t mean a negative test tomorrow. Always follow all public health and safety guidelines. Coronavirus is thought to spread by contact with respiratory droplets. Therefore, students, faculty and staff can reduce their risk for contracting and spreading this virus by:

  • Wearing a mask or cloth face covering inside all public areas in campus facilities and outdoors when six feet of social distancing is not possible.
  • Regularly washing your hands with soap and water for at least 20 seconds. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand sanitizer.
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth with unwashed hands.
  • Avoiding close contact with people who are sick.
  • Staying home when you are sick.
  • Covering your cough or sneeze with a tissue, then throwing the tissue in the trash.
  • Cleaning and disinfecting frequently touched objects and surfaces.
  • Avoiding large gatherings and adhering to the no-guest policy in residence halls.