Rutgers University is 'on fairly solid ground ' to require students to be vaccinated against COVID-19

Rutgers University is requiring students to get the COVID-19 vaccine before they come back for the fall semester, and one expert thinks that other colleges will do the same.

“Rutgers is on fairly solid ground and we’re likely to see a good number of universities, both public and private, start to mandate the vaccine,” Eric Feldman, professor of medical ethics and health policy at the University of Pennsylvania Carey Law School, told Yahoo Finance Live (video above).

Rutgers, a public university in New Jersey, is the first prominent U.S. higher education institution to mandate COVID vaccines for the fall semester. Students will be required to show proof of vaccination — or receive an exemption — before coming to campus to attend classes or live in university housing.

Students who are under the age of 17 will only be eligible for the Pfizer vaccine, while older students will be able to receive a Moderna, Pfizer, or Johnson & Johnson inoculation.

"Rutgers has been approved by the State of New Jersey to offer Rutgers clinics for on-campus administration of vaccines to faculty, staff, and students, when vaccine supplies become available," the school stated. "Currently, Rutgers does not have vaccines."

'The FDA requires that patients and caregivers be informed of their right'

There is some pushback across the country when it comes to mandatory vaccinations.

Teachers in Los Angeles sued the city’s school districtfor mandating vaccines as a condition for work despite not being fully approved by the federal government.

“For its part, the FDA refers to the COVID Vaccines as 'investigational products' – i.e., they remain experimental,” the plaintiffs stated in the lawsuit. “In accordance with the governing statute, the FDA requires that patients and caregivers be informed of their right to refuse administration of the product.”

Education Secretary Miguel Cardona has been vocal about not mandating vaccines for all educators.

“We know there are examples of schools safety reopening without everybody being vaccinated,” Cardona said in an interview on ABC’s The View on Friday.

"Rutgers faculty and staff are also encouraged to get immunized against COVID-19 at the earliest opportunity," the university stated. "All members of our community may register with the State in order to get vaccinated."

Feldman noted that for college staff, rollouts will depend on whether the faculty is unionized and on the contracts between the faculty and administration.

“I think we’ll see lawsuits challenging the legality of mandating the vaccine at all,” he explained. “I’d be amazed if we didn’t see lawsuits against Rutgers or other employers mandating the vaccine brought by people who claim to have had an adverse reaction to the vaccine."

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