Posted Date: January 22, 2016
Quick Facts and Resources for New Jersey Residents
Quick Fact: A written statement should be submitted by the student, or the student's parent or guardian if the student is a minor, stating that "immunization interferes with the free exercise of the pupil's religious rights". Medical exemptions are also allowed.
Other Resources: Many vaccination and exemption information links are date specific. If the links below have expired, click on the state's department of health, or immunization program link provided below, as they are likely to provide links to updated information. The General Information link leads to the overview page provided by the state at the time of this webpage's update and may also be helpful. Please email NVIC with broken link information.
K-12 School Information
Other State Resources
The information contained on NVIC's web pages is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be medical or legal advice. Those seeking medical or legal advice should obtain the services of a competent attorney, physician or qualified health care professional. Although NVIC continually updates our website, state laws and rules change frequently and consumers are ultimately responsible for verifying their state's vaccination and exemption laws and requirements.
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Statutes may be accessed online here.
TITLE 18A. EDUCATION
SUBTITLE 8A. HIGHER EDUCATION;
PUBLIC AND NONPUBLIC INSTITUTIONS
CHAPTER 61D. RULES AND REGULATIONS
N.J. Stat. § 18A:61D-1. Immunization record
1. Every public and independent institution of higher education in this State shall, as a condition of admission or continued enrollment, require every graduate and undergraduate student who is 30 years of age or less and is enrolled full-time or part-time in a program or course of study leading to an academic degree, to submit to the institution a valid immunization record which documents the administration of all required immunizations against vaccine-preventable disease, or evidence of immunity from these diseases, in accordance with regulations promulgated by the Department of Health. The institution shall keep the records on file in such form and manner as prescribed by the department.
N.J. Stat. § 18A:61D-3. Conflict with religious beliefs
A student who submits to the institution of higher education a written statement that immunization conflicts with his religious beliefs shall not be required to submit a list of immunizations to the institution as a condition of admission or continued enrollment.
N.J. Stat. § 18A:61D-4. Contraindication
A student who submits to the institution a written statement that an immunization is medically contraindicated shall submit a valid immunization record of other administered immunizations in accordance with regulations promulgated by the department.
N.J. Stat. § 18A:61D-9. Hepatitis B vaccination required for certain students at institutions of higher education
a. Beginning with the 2008-09 school year, a new student enrolling in a program leading to an academic degree at a public or private institution of higher education in this State, who registers for 12 or more credit hours of course study per semester or term, shall be vaccinated for hepatitis B within nine months of attendance as a condition of continued attendance at that institution, except as provided in section 4 of this act.
b. A student shall present evidence of the vaccination required pursuant to this section to the institution in a manner prescribed by the institution.
c. The Department of Health and Senior Services shall require each public or private institution of higher education in this State to offer the vaccination required pursuant to this section to its students through the institution's student health services program or through a contractual agreement with a community health care provider.
d. The Commissioner of Health and Senior Services shall adopt rules and regulations pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L.1968, c.410 (C.52:14B-1 et seq.) to carry out the purposes of subsections a., b. and c. of this section and sections 3 and 4 of this act.
N.J. Stat. § 18A:61D-10. Exemption from vaccination
A student shall not be required to receive a vaccination pursuant to section 2 or 3 of this act [C. 18A:61D-9 and 18A:40-21.1] based upon one of the following:
a. a written statement submitted to the secondary school or institution of higher education, as applicable, by a licensed physician indicating that the vaccine is medically contraindicated for a specific period of time and the reasons for the medical contraindication, based upon valid medical reasons as determined by regulation of the Commissioner of Health and Senior Services, which shall exempt the student from the vaccination for the stated period of time; or
b. a written statement submitted to the secondary school or institution of higher education, as applicable, by the student, or the student's parent or guardian if the student is a minor, explaining how the administration of the vaccine conflicts with the bona fide religious tenets or practices of the student, or the parent or guardian, as appropriate; except that a general philosophical or moral objection to the vaccination shall not be sufficient for an exemption on religious grounds.
N.J. Stat. § 18A:40-21.1. Hepatitis B vaccination required for public and private school students in grades nine through twelve
The Commissioner of Health and Senior Services shall require the immunization of a child for hepatitis B as a condition of enrollment in grades nine through 12.
b. Beginning with the 2003-2004 school year, a principal, director or other person in charge of a public or private school in this State shall not knowingly admit or retain in grades nine through 12 a child whose parent or guardian has not submitted acceptable evidence of the child's immunization for hepatitis B prior to or during enrollment in ninth grade, as provided by regulation of the Commissioner of Health and Senior Services.
c. The Commissioner of Health and Senior Services shall adopt rules and regulations pursuant to the "Administrative Procedure Act," P.L. 1968, c. 410 (C. 52:14B-1 et seq.) to carry out the purposes of this section.
TITLE 26. HEALTH AND VITAL STATISTICS
CHAPTER 1A. STATE DEPARTMENT OF HEALTH -- REORGANIZED
N.J. Stat. § 26:1A-9.1. Exemption for pupils from mandatory immunization; interference with religious rights; suspension.
Provisions in the State Sanitary Code in implementation of this act shall provide for exemption for pupils from mandatory immunization if the parent or guardian of the pupil objects thereto in a written statement signed by the parent or guardian upon the ground that the proposed immunization interferes with the free exercise of the pupil's religious rights. This exemption may be suspended by the State Commissioner of Health during the existence of an emergency as determined by the State Commissioner of Health.
TITLE 26. HEALTH AND VITAL STATISTICS
CHAPTER 2N. PERTUSSIS VACCINATION
N.J. Stat. § 26:2N-4. Contraindication exemption
A child shall not be required to receive a pertussis vaccine as a condition for admission to a public or private school if the child's health care provider states in writing that the vaccine is medically contraindicated pursuant to subsection b. (1) of section 2 of this act and the reasons for the medical contradictions.