Publication Date


Degree Program

Department of Public Health

Degree Type

Master of Science


Immunizations for vaccine preventable diseases are ordinarily completed by young adulthood, and the school system is typically the institution required to determine compliance with state immunization requirements prior to enrollment. In recent years, outbreaks of measles on college campuses across the United States have led to the implementation of immunization requirements. Kentucky fouryear postsecondary institutions are not required by state law to request proof of immunization. The purpose of this study was to assess prematriculation immunization policies of Kentucky four-year colleges and universities. Participants completed a survey which appraised the existence of a university prematriculation policy, the diseases covered by their policy, year of policy implementation, and university departments responsible for initiating the policy. In addition, participants were asked if immunizations are available on campus, which vaccinations are available, if an immunization policy had been considered and how recently, and feedback from students, parents and faculty/staff. The survey assessed the attitudes of the respondent regarding policy benefits/dislikes, need for state legislation, and institutional attitude toward governmental intervention of their policy making. Future research on this topic should address the following: the status of prematriculation immunization policies among Kentucky state postsecondary institutions from an epidemiological/public health perspective; explore in greater detail the reason(s) affecting the institutional decision to implement or abandon a prematriculation immunization requirement; investigate or survey the attitudes of students, parents, and faculty/staff toward vaccination programs; include attempts to interview in person a representative from institutions that did not respond to the mailed survey. Further investigation should be conducted; Kentucky four-year colleges and universities would benefit from additional research on vaccine preventable diseases among college students and information gathered from other states with regard to PMIR policies.


Education | Public Health