COVID-19 Q&A

Thank you for your patience as we review the new provincial public health measures and their impact on post-secondary in Alberta.

We understand you have questions, and we are working to provide more details and clarity in the coming days. If you have a question that isn't answered below, please email covid@mhc.ab.ca


Frequently Asked Questions

Are vaccines mandatory at Medicine Hat College?
Yes, subject to the province’s new Restriction Exemption Program shared on Sept. 15, COVID-19 vaccinations will be required at Alberta post-secondary institutions.

There is now a sector-specific exemption program in place for post-secondary institutions in Alberta. The program supports MHC’s direction on requirement for proof of vaccination, regular testing, or a documented medical exemption. Please note the key revisions below:

  • Any individual who received their first dose on or before Sept. 20 is no longer required to wait two weeks before returning to campus. This means if a first dose was received Sept. 20 or earlier, you can enter college facilities starting today. Please ensure you have proof of vaccination available and can meet the criteria outlined in the attached declaration statement (updated Sept. 20).
  • If you will receive your first dose after Sept. 20, you must wait two weeks from the date of vaccination before returning to campus, or provide proof of a negative PCR or rapid test within 72 of accessing a college facility.
  • Individuals will be required to be fully vaccinated by Nov. 1, 2021.


Can I provide proof of a rapid test in lieu of vaccination?
Yes, proof of a negative rapid or PCR test is acceptable. Proof of a negative test is required within 72 hours prior to accessing campus facilities. Tests from AHS or Alberta Precision Laboratories not allowed) are not accepted, based on Alberta's Restriction Exemption Program.


Where can I get a privatized rapid test?
MHC has tests on order that will be available later this week. Employees and students will be updated on the testing process via email once the tests have arrived. Please note, the college will cover the cost of rapid testing for employees and students for a limited time. A positive result must be followed up with a PCR test. PCR tests must be covered at the individual’s expense.

 PCR tests are available at pharmacies.

A list of additional PCR test suppliers is available here: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-rapid-testing-third-party-health-service-vendors-businesses.pdf


I will get vaccinated after Sept. 20. What are my options for learning while waiting for the two week period?
Students are encouraged to connect with their instructors to explore methods to support learning during this time.


For September 20, what serves as proof of vaccination or third party rapid test?
To ensure that we can demonstrate compliance with government regulations in a timely fashion, everyone attending Medicine Hat or Brooks campuses is affirmatively declaring that they have proof of at least one vaccination or a third party rapid test. The authenticity of this declaration may be verified by designated employees.


I am studying online at MHC? Do I need to be vaccinated?
If you are studying online exclusively, and have no need to be physically present on campus in Medicine Hat or Brooks, you will not be required to show proof of vaccination.


What if I have an exemption?
To learn more about limited exemptions, please visit click here.

If you have an existing and documented medical exemption, please ensure you have that information with you when returning to campus.

Please note: documentation of a valid medical exemption is the original signed letter from a physician or nurse practitioner that includes:

    • Person's name that matches their identification.
    • Physician’s or nurse practitioner’s complete information, including:
      • name, phone number, contact information, professional registration number and signature
      • statement that there is a medical reason for not being fully vaccinated against COVID-19
      • duration that the exemption is valid


Is it a violation of human rights for Medicine Hat College to request confirmation of vaccination?
No. The following is an excerpt from the Alberta Human Rights Commission webpage:

Requests for confirmation of vaccination Some employers, service providers, or landlords might be considering asking their employees, service recipients, or tenants whether they have been vaccinated, or requesting proof of vaccination. On its own, a request for information about vaccinations is not contrary to the Act. Collection of information about employees, service recipients, or tenants is covered under privacy legislation. Questions about the collection and retention of information can be directed to the Office of the Information and Privacy Commission.

However, providing information that someone has not or cannot be vaccinated should not lead to discriminatory treatment of people who cannot be vaccinated because of a disability or religious belief. Employers, service providers, and landlords have an obligation to accommodate individuals who cannot be vaccinated for these reasons to the point of undue hardship.


Is it a violation of privacy laws for Medicine Hat College to request confirmation of vaccination?
No. Medicine Hat College is subject to the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (“FOIP”) of Alberta. FOIP sets out what personal information the College can collect and how it can use and disclose such information. FOIP allows the College to collect personal information that is necessary for operating programs or activities of the College. The College has an obligation to safeguard this sensitive personal information, as it does with all personal information it collects. This information, once collected, can only be shared with employees of the College who need to know this information to complete their job duties at the College.


I have had COVID, and have proof of antibodies documentation. Will this be accepted in lieu of vaccination?
This is not part of the exemption process as defined by the Government of Alberta at this time.


Will my program be made available online if I don’t have proof of vaccination or rapid test?
Only programs that were online at the start of the semester will be available in that delivery format.


What if I don’t want to be vaccinated but have already paid tuition for Fall 2021? Will I receive a refund?
If you choose not to continue your education at MHC, please contact registration at
registration@mhc.ab.ca for a refund on Fall 2021 tuition.

The tuition payment deadline has been extended to Thursday, Sept. 23.

Are vaccines mandatory at Medicine Hat College?
Yes, subject to the province’s new Restrictions Exemption Program shared on Sept. 15, COVID-19 vaccinations will be required.

There is now a sector-specific exemption program in place for post-secondary institutions in Alberta. The program supports MHC’s direction on requirement for proof of vaccination, regular testing, or a documented medical exemption. Please note the key revisions below:

  • Any individual who received their first dose on or before Sept. 20 is no longer required to wait two weeks before returning to campus. This means if a first dose was received Sept. 20 or earlier, you can enter college facilities starting today. Please ensure you have proof of vaccination available and can meet the criteria outlined in the attached declaration statement (updated Sept. 20).
  • If you will receive your first dose after Sept. 20, you must wait two weeks from the date of vaccination before returning to campus, or provide proof of a negative PCR or rapid test within 72 of accessing a college facility.
  • Individuals will be required to be fully vaccinated by Nov. 1, 2021.


Can I provide proof of a rapid test in lieu of vaccination?
Yes, proof of a negative rapid or PCR test is acceptable. Proof of a negative test is required within 72 hours prior to accessing campus facilities. Tests from AHS or Alberta Precision Laboratories not allowed) are not accepted, based on Alberta's Restriction Exemption Program.


I have had COVID, and have proof of antibodies documentation. Will this be accepted in lieu of vaccination?
This is not part of the exemption process as defined by the Government of Alberta at this time.


Where can I get a privatized rapid test?
MHC has tests on order that will be available later this week. Employees and students will be updated on the testing process via email once the tests have arrived. Please note, the college will cover the cost of rapid testing for employees and students for a limited time. A positive result must be followed up with a PCR test. PCR tests must be covered at the individual’s expense.

 PCR tests are available at pharmacies.

A list of additional PCR test suppliers is available here: https://www.alberta.ca/assets/documents/covid-19-rapid-testing-third-party-health-service-vendors-businesses.pdf


I will get vaccinated after Sept. 20. What are my options for working during the two week period?
Employees are encouraged to connect with their supervisor to explore remote work options.


For September 20 what serves as proof of vaccination or third party rapid test?
To ensure that we can demonstrate compliance with government regulations in a timely fashion, everyone attending Medicine Hat or Brooks campuses is affirmatively declaring that they have proof of at least one vaccination or a third party rapid test. The authenticity of this declaration may be verified by designated employees.


What if I have an exemption?
Any employee may request an exemption if they feel they cannot be tested or vaccinated based on medical or other protected grounds recognized by the Alberta Human Rights Commission.

If you have an existing and documented medical exemption, please ensure you have that information with you when returning to campus.

Please note: documentation of a valid medical exemption is the original signed letter from a physician or nurse practitioner that includes:

    • Person's name that matches their identification.
    • Physician’s or nurse practitioner’s complete information, including:
      • name, phone number, contact information, professional registration number and signature
      • statement that there is a medical reason for not being fully vaccinated against COVID-19
      • duration that the exemption is valid


Is it a violation of human rights for Medicine Hat College to request confirmation of vaccination?
No. The following is an excerpt from the Alberta Human Rights Commission webpage:

Requests for confirmation of vaccination Some employers, service providers, or landlords might be considering asking their employees, service recipients, or tenants whether they have been vaccinated, or requesting proof of vaccination. On its own, a request for information about vaccinations is not contrary to the Act. Collection of information about employees, service recipients, or tenants is covered under privacy legislation. Questions about the collection and retention of information can be directed to the Office of the Information and Privacy Commission.

However, providing information that someone has not or cannot be vaccinated should not lead to discriminatory treatment of people who cannot be vaccinated because of a disability or religious belief. Employers, service providers, and landlords have an obligation to accommodate individuals who cannot be vaccinated for these reasons to the point of undue hardship.


Is it a violation of privacy laws for Medicine Hat College to request confirmation of vaccination?
No. Medicine Hat College is subject to the Freedom of Information and Protection of Privacy Act (“FOIP”) of Alberta. FOIP sets out what personal information the College can collect and how it can use and disclose such information. FOIP allows the College to collect personal information that is necessary for operating programs or activities of the College. The College has an obligation to safeguard this sensitive personal information, as it does with all personal information it collects. This information, once collected, can only be shared with employees of the College who need to know this information to complete their job duties at the College.

Contact Us

Have a question that's not answered here?

Email: covid@mhc.ab.ca