campus news

Campus vaccine clinics reopen with start of fall semester

A person uses a syringe to extract vaccine from a vial.


Published August 30, 2023

Thomas Russo MD; Professor and Chief, Infectious Disease; Department of Medicine; Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences at the University at Buffalo; 2021mas Russo.
“Receiving the updated flu and COVID booster shots is the best way to stay healthy this school year. ”
Thomas Russo, SUNY Distinguished Professor and chief of infectious diseases
Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences

A flu and COVID-19 vaccine clinic will be set up on campus this fall to help the UB community stay healthy following a summer that saw COVID cases rise across the U.S.

The clinic will run from 11 a.m. to 2 p.m. three days a week between Sept. 11 and Nov. 10.

The flu vaccine will be available on all clinic dates. The COVID vaccine will be available once the newest version becomes available. Updates on the availability of COVID vaccine at the clinics will be published when confirmed.

“We are already seeing a small increase in COVID cases and I think it is fair to say that we anticipate a further increase this coming fall/winter,” says Thomas Russo, SUNY Distinguished Professor and chief of infectious diseases in the Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences. “Given that, receiving the updated booster will minimize the likelihood that COVID will be disruptive for your school year.”

The clinic will be open on Tuesdays in 235 Student Union, North Campus; on Wednesdays in 105 Harriman Hall, South Campus on Wednesdays; and on Thursdays in 2211 Jacobs School of Medicine and Biomedical Sciences.

Those interested should bring their photo ID and insurance card with them. The participating retail pharmacies, Tops Friendly Markets and Rutowski Pharmacies, are planning to offer a pre-registration option to improve clinic efficiency. More details on the pre-registration can be found by searching “flu shot clinics” on the UB calendar of events.

While COVID vaccinations are no longer required for students as they were during the pandemic, students and employees are strongly encouraged to stay up to date with their shots, which means getting boosters when eligible.

“Receiving the updated flu and COVID booster shots is the best way to stay healthy this school year,” Russo says. “The protection afforded will decrease the likelihood of developing infection, serious disease and long COVID.”

COVID testing is not required before returning to the campus for the fall; proof of vaccination is not required for campus events; and masks are no longer required on campus, although anyone who wishes to continue wearing one is encouraged to do so.

The one caveat is for students enrolled in health-related programs, who must continue to provide proof of their primary COVID-19 vaccination. Documentation must be downloaded using the UB Student Health Services portal.

“The single best way to reduce the risk of seasonal flu and COVID-19 is to get vaccinated,” says Susan Snyder, director of student health services. “Being ill causes class and work absences that add to the ill individuals’ stress. Prevention is the best option.”

The university community is also encouraged to practice healthy habits, particularly during the traditional respiratory virus season.

That includes:

  • Covering coughs and sneezes. Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
  • Washing your hands often with soap and water. If soap and water are not available, use an alcohol-based hand rub.
  • Avoiding touching your eyes, nose and mouth. Germs spread this way.
  • Monitoring your health and staying home if you are unwell. If you develop symptoms of COVID, get tested.
  • Following CDC precautions if you have been exposed to COVID or test positive.

Students who need to miss class due to illness and isolation should notify instructors as soon as possible and no later than 24 hours after missing class.

Employees who test positive for COVID should isolate and report the results to their supervisor.