A vaccine (also known as an immunization) is a product that improves your immune system’s ability to fight germs that cause a disease. Vaccines can prevent certain illnesses, some of which are life-threatening.
While vaccination is not mandatory in Canada, Concordia Health Services strongly recommends everyone keep their vaccinations up-to-date.
Keeping your vaccines up-to-date
Outbreaks of vaccine-preventable illnesses happen on Canadian and U.S. campuses every term — including measles, mumps, chicken pox, meningitis, and of course, Covid-19.
Do you know if your vaccines are up-to-date? Many Concordians have not received all the vaccines that are recommended by public health experts. This puts them at increased risk for getting and spreading these illnesses. For example:
You received vaccines when you were a child, but not the ones you need as a teen and adult.
You moved to Canada from a country where vaccines were not as accessible.
Your parents chose to not vaccinate you.
Your vaccination records
If you're moving to Montreal for university, it's important to know your vaccine history. Before you leave home, make sure to:
Review your vaccine history with your health care provider and update any vaccines you’re missing. Vaccines can be costly, and student insurance plans do not offer the same coverage that employee or family plans pay for. Start early, as some vaccines require a series of shots and may take a few weeks or months to complete.
Pack your vaccine records (or a clear copy or photo). Everyone should have this vital information easily accessible.
Health Services’ routine adult vaccination program
Ask questions and discuss any concerns you have regarding vaccines
Review your vaccination history and learn what vaccines you need
Receive vaccines. Verify your eligibility for free and paid vaccines below.
Bring any vaccination records that you have to your appointment, even scans or photographs if you don’t have your original records. Any information you can gather will help the nurse determine what you need. If you can't find your records you can still have your vaccinations reviewed and updated, so don't hesitate to book your appointment!
Many vaccines are available at no cost to students, staff and faculty. Criteria may apply to get the vaccine for free.
If you don't meet the criteria to receive a vaccine for free, you can still purchase the vaccine and have it administered. At Health Services, nurses and doctors can provide a prescription for certain paid vaccines.
Pharmacies that offer vaccines include Jean Coutu (flu), Brunet, Pharmaprix (select your pharmacy by postal code; you will then be redirected to book on ClicSanté), and Uniprix (put your postal code in; then call the pharmacy to see if they offer vaccination services).
Every pharmacy has different policies, so call in advance to find out if the pharmacy nurse can administer your vaccine without a doctor's prescription, or if you need a doctor’s prescription.
For reimbursement, verify with your insurance provider, as most do not need a doctor's prescription to reimburse vaccines. This can save yourself a doctor's appointment.
No prescription is needed at the Pharmaprix across the street from the EV building. Go to the pharmacist and book an appointment with the vaccine nurse. You will be able to receive the vaccine there for the price of the vaccine plus an injection fee. You can then submit your receipt to your insurance provider if they cover vaccines.
Since vaccination has become routine in Canada, many major diseases have been brought under control. You may have questions about vaccines. Explore these reliable onlines resources, or call Health Services for more information.
General vaccination information from the Santé Montréal portal (in French, English, Arabic, Chinese and Spanish)