Pre-Placement Health Assessment, Screening & Certification

In preparation for placements, University of Galway Medical, Nursing & Health Sciences students are required to complete an Occupational Health Pre-Placement Health Assessment (PPHA) and screening process with the Student Health Unit. Students must have undertaken their pre-placement assessment and must have commenced their immunity/infectious diseases screening and been granted at least temporary clearance/certification from same, in order to be permitted to commence their clinical placement. Therefore, it is imperative that you engage in the above programme immediately, once you have completed your university registration process

For pre-placement certification you are required to complete a questionnaire which contains the following sections:

  1. Registration Form with contact details & basic medical information
  2. Health Assessment Questionnaire - provide general medical/health-related information
  3. Vaccination & Immunisation History
  4. Proof of Vaccinations/Immunisation & Photo ID - Upload the following documents;
        • Evidence of any relevant vaccinations that you may have previously received: BCG, Measle/Mumps/Rubella (MMR), Hepatitis B or Varicella (‘Chickenpox’) – please see below advice on how to search for/obtain vaccination records, while any outstanding vaccines can be administered via Student Health Unit.
        • A valid copy of your Passport/Driving license is also required for verification – no other form of Photo ID is accepted.

Following receipt of your registration form/PPHA questionnaire, copy of Photo ID, and any other vaccination documents available to you (please note that you can also upload vaccination/immunisation documents at a later date), the Student Health Unit will contact you in due course about arranging an appointment for your screening consultation, as the next step in your clearance and certification process. For some students, depending on their previous vaccinations/immunity status, this process can take around 8 months to complete, and may include up to 4 or 5 consultations. A tiny minority may take longer and require additional consultations. Some students will be undertaking clinical placement as early as 2 months after commencing their course, so it is important to reassure these students that provided that they engage promptly with the PPHA and screening process, it will still be possible to ensure that they are granted temporary clearance/certification to permit them to commence their placement as scheduled.

Vaccination Records

Most students will have previously received 2 doses of MMR vaccination as part of their routine childhood immunisation schedule, while some students may have also previously received BCG vaccination. Primary Varicella infection/‘Chickenpox’ is common in Ireland and vaccination against it is not part of the current childhood schedule here, though for some overseas students, Varicella vaccination may have been received as part of their childhood immunisation schedule. Hepatitis B was only introduced into Irish childhood immunisation schedule after 2008, so most students will not have previously received this, though a minority of Irish students may have received Hepatitis B vaccination later in life related to travel or other reasons. Overseas students, however, may have been vaccinated against Hepatitis B in childhood.

Students born in Ireland can contact their GP to request their vaccination records and/or can also use the following link: or search to find the Local Health Offices for the contact numbers to request records on your vaccination history.

International/Overseas students can consider contacting their GP/Family Physician/Local Health clinic to pursue their vaccination records or consider using some of the links provided below.

Of note for our Malaysian students, MMR vaccine and was introduced in Malaysia in 2002, but may be recorded as Campak, Beguk & Rubella.

If you do not have vaccination records, some of the following links may be of help to you:

Malaysia: Ministry of Health Malaysia:

Canada: Immunisation Canada on 

USA: Local GP, Paediatrician or How to find my US child immunisation records


It is really important to reassure all students that any outstanding vaccinations that are required will be provided to you by the Student Health Unit as part of your screening and clearance/certification process, as detailed and outlined below.

The Screening Process

1st Consultation

On your first visit to the Student Health Unit, your Vaccination/Immunisation history is confirmed and checked for proof of MMR x 2, presence of BCG Scar or evidence of previous BCG Vaccine (if no scar/vaccine, Mantoux/QuantiFERON test will be required at a later date). You will also be assessed for TB risk, including travel history (if at risk, you will need either Mantoux/QuantiFERON test at a later date). 

Blood Tests are taken for Hepatitis B, Rubella & Varicella Titres (copies of previous results from laboratories in Ireland are acceptable, but it may not be possible to accept results from some laboratories outside Ireland). Many students will also require blood tests for blood-borne viruses as part of Exposure Prone Procedure (EPP) clearance. These specific blood tests for Anti-Hepatitis B Core, Hepatitis B Surface Antigen, Anti-Hepatitis C must be taken under a strict Identity Validated Sampling protocol (i.e. these can only be carried out at Student Health Unit; Results from another practice, in Ireland or abroad, cannot be accepted).

Proof of any previous Hepatitis B Vaccinations, if applicable, will be assessed. If you have not previously been vaccinated for Hepatitis B, you will receive a 1st dose of Hepatitis B Vaccine.

2nd Consultation (1 month later) 

2nd Hepatitis B Vaccine will be administered, or booster dose (where required, based on previous titre check).
Review of blood test results from previous consultation & where indicated,
• MMR booster/vaccination. (Those who need MMR may require 2 doses, at least 4 weeks apart)
• Varicella vaccination, if no antibodies (may require 2 doses, at least 4 weeks apart)

3rd Consultation (6 months after 1st consultation)

3rd Hepatitis B Vaccine will be administered

4th Consultation (2 Months post -3rd Hepatitis vaccine)

Hepatitis B Antibody Levels are checked with a blood test.

*Booster dose or additional full course of Hepatitis B vaccinations may subsequently be required, if protective levels are not attained - up to 15% of adults have a poor or no response to three doses of vaccine!

Additional Consultations

Separate additional Nurse consultation visits may be required at different stages, either during the course of, or after the above outlined schedule, for any other required booster vaccinations (MMR/Varicella/etc.), blood tests and/or for either Mantoux/Quantiferon testing.
Mantoux/QuantiFERON testing is required for students who do not have BCG scar/documented evidence of BCG vaccine and/or who are identified as a possible TB risk. The Student Health Unit medical team will determine which students require either Mantoux or QuantiFERON testing. Mantoux testing involves two separate consultation visits 48hrs apart (1st visit to administer the test and 2nd visit to read the result), and these specific clinics are run at 4 or 5 designated times during the college year.
Based on health issues identified either during the PPHA process or that may subsequently arise during the course of their studies/placement, some students may require specific follow-up consultations (either teleconsultation or face-to-face consultation) with a Doctor in the Student Health Unit. While a very small number of these students may also on occasion require referral for further review and formal assessment with an additional Occupational Health Physician, or with an Infectious Diseases/other hospital-based specialist Consultant.

‘Flu’ (Influenza) & other vaccinations 

The yearly Influenza/‘Flu’ season in the northern hemisphere generally runs from October to April. Annual seasonal Influenza/’Flu’ vaccination is not mandatory for healthcare students/workers, but is very highly recommended, both in the interests of protecting yourself and also to protect your fellow students/workers, family, friends, and most importantly, the patients with whom you interact during your clinical placement. If ‘Flu’ vaccination is offered and provided within your clinical placement setting, then we strongly advise that you avail of same on an annual basis. If you are unable to avail of access to ‘Flu’ vaccination in your clinical placement, or if you are not on placement during ‘Flu’ season, then you can contact the Student Health Unit to arrange an appointment for ‘Flu’ vaccination with our service.

Similarly, COVID-19 is still in circulation across our communities and can pose a signigicant risk to vulnerable people within our population. Though COVID-19 vaccination is also not mandatory, healthcare students/workers are strongly advised to undergo vaccination against COVID-19, and to avail of subsequent booster doese, when same are due. COVID-19 vaccination is widely and freely available via the HSE, Pharmacies and GP practices.

Some clinical/elective placements and healthcare facilities require students to also have evidence of a recent Pertussis booster vaccination. Should this be required for one of your placements/electives, you can contact the Student Health Unit to arrange an appointment to have this administered.

To arrange an appointment for either Influenza/‘Flu’ or Pertussis vaccination, please contact the Student Health Unit by email to:

Pre-Placement Health Assessment

If you have your required documents available and you are ready to begin your screening process, please complete the following form

Pre-Placement Health Assessment Form

The following documents are required as proof of immunity history

*Evidence of 2x MMR vaccinations and BCG record (if previously received)

* A copy of your passport/driving license is also required for verification
* Evidence of 3x Hepatitis B vaccinations (if you have previously received them)
* Evidence of any previous Varicella vaccinations (if previously received)


We may request additional documentation from you if your application is incomplete. Only use the following form to upload additional documentation as requested

Additional Documentation Form