By Richie Ramos

SACRAMENTO (CBS13) – The University of California announced on Friday an executive order requiring all staff, faculty and students to get a flu shot before November 1.

The decision is meant to help protect the public and members of the UC community mitigate the surge of flu cases health care systems are expecting over the fall and winter flu season and the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic.

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“The executive order requires the vaccination for all faculty and staff who are working at a UC location. The university already has a clear policy on immunizations for students, and this action adds influenza to existing vaccination requirements for them, and extends the requirement to faculty and staff beyond those which presently exist for all UC health care workers,” UC officials said in a news release.

The UC said a process will be in place for faculty and staff to request medical exemptions.

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“Requests for disability or religious accommodations will be handled through the interactive process consistent with existing location policies and procedures,” officials said.

Officials said UC medical plans will provide faculty, staff and students with free flu shots.

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“In addition, for those without group health care coverage, all ACA-compliant health plans also cover flu vaccinations as part of a preventive care package that includes no copay,” officials said.