Bacterial Meningitis

The Texas Education Code, § 51.9192, subchapter Z, establish the January 1, 2012, requirement for bacterial meningitis vaccination for the college students under the age of 22 to submit evidence of being immunized within the last five years. All students that have not attended any Texas college or university during the previous long semester(s) (fall and spring) will be required to have the bacterial meningitis vaccination at least 10 days prior to the first day of the semester.  Students will not be able to register until proof of vaccination is on file.

The following is acceptable evidence of vaccination or receiving a booster dose:

  • The signature or stamp of a physician or his/her designee, or public health personnel on a form which shows the month, day, and year the vaccination dose or booster was administered;
  • An official immunization record generated from a state or local health authority; or
  • An official record received from school officials, including a record from another state 

Bacterial Meningitis is a serious, potentially deadly disease that can progress extremely fast — so take the utmost caution. It is an inflammation of the membranes that surround the brain and spinal cord. The bacteria that cause meningitis can also infect the blood. This disease strikes about 3,000 Americans annually, including 100-125 on college campuses, leading to 5-15 deaths among college students every year. There is a treatment, but those who survive might develop severe health problems or disabilities.



The student has a right to claim an exemption from the vaccination requirement. To claim the exemption the student must provide one of the following:

  • An affidavit or a certificate signed by a physician who is duly registered and licensed to practice medicine in the United States, in which it is stated that, in the physician's opinion, the vaccination required would be injurious to the health and well-being of the student; or
  • For new students living in on-campus housing or under the age of 18 must use the official Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) form and can be ordered electronically.  It is mailed from DSHS to the student and it may take up to two weeks to receive the form.
  • Students attending public junior colleges (community colleges) can apply online through the portal at the Department of State Health Services (DSHS).


Odessa College Admissions

201 W. University

Odessa, TX 79764