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Immunizations Required

  • Current PPD
  • MMR
  • Varicella
  • Hep B
  • Tdap (Tetanus, Diptheria, Pertussis) – Get either a Td or Tdap booster shot every 10 years after first dose)
  • Influenza by November 30th of each year
  • Covid-19
    • Must be vaccinated by October 7, 2021.
    • Complete VA Form 10-263 and submit along with a copy of your Covid-19 vaccine card.
    • If student is not receiving the COVID-19 vaccine, they must file for an exemption (medical or religious) using the VA Form 10-263.
    • If student is not vaccinated or filed an exemption by October 7, 2021, they CANNOT come to the VA.
    • If student is NOT fully vaccinated (and filed an exemption), they need to complete COVID-19 testing WEEKLY at the VA Portland Health Care System.

Immunizations Records Submit to and Date:

  • Submit VA Form 10-263 for Covid-19 vaccine requirement to Dr. Amara Callahan at by October 7, 2021 and to:
  • Timothy R. Hughes
    Medical Media, Visual Information Specialist
    Student Coordinator, Work Study Program Administrator
    VA Portland Health Care System (P2EDUC)
    3710 SW US Veterans Hospital Rd
    Portland, OR 97239
    (503) 220-8262 Ext 56992

Documentation Required

  • The Standard Operating Procedure (SOP) for new optometry students at the Portland VA Medical Center has changed to reflect heightened security requirements. Before an optometry student can start a clinical rotation at the Portland Veterans Affairs Medical Center, the optometry student’s placement must be authorized and approved by the Chief of Education in consultation with the Academic Affiliations Program Support Assistant (AAPSA) in the Education Division. This process can take anywhere from 10 to 12 weeks. The following items must be completed before starting their rotation.
    • The students must contact Dr. Amara Callahan at least 8 weeks (not 30 days) prior to their starting date: or (503) 220-8262 ext. 58214 to establish communication.
  • The students will complete application forms from an email (that will be sent to them) for processing as a WOC (without compensation) appointment at least 10 weeks prior to their official starting date. This paperwork must be done regardless of whether you have already completed another VA rotation. Education offices within the VA system do not share files, they are all separate. If you have already done a VA rotation and have an ID badge, please let us know if the expiration date on the badge will still be current through the end of your rotation here. You may not need to have a new one issued.
  • A few tips from Education regarding the above forms:
    • Optional Form 612: They only need to complete Sections A, D, H, I. VA
    • National Rules of Behavior: Only return the last page that they complete (keep the other 5 pages for their information). Position Title: Student
  • Please complete the forms in the order above. It is extremely important to include your email address on every form that has that field. The paperwork gets separated here, and some go to HR and other forms stay here. Our “only” form of communication is via email, so it’s important that you print that information neatly on each form that has that field or type the information so that it is legible. If you email the documents, it is suggested that you use encryption (such as
  • Selective Service Card (register by Age 26)
  • Social Security Number
  • The student must provide proof of a current CPR card that will not expire for the duration of their clinical rotation.
  • International Students and Social Security Numbers:
    • Health professions trainees (HPTs) training at VA medical centers receive temporary Federal appointments and personal identity verification credentials. To be properly vetted and eligible to participate in training, non‑US citizen HPTs who are temporarily in the United States must have:
    • A nonimmigrant F-1 or J-1 student classification; or, an I-20 (or DS-2019) certificate of eligibility; AND
    • A US Social Security Number
    • Unfortunately the use of a “pseudo-SSN” is prohibited in certain Federal systems. Your facility may have found work arounds, however use of a pseudo-SSN, or other 9-digit number, will not be permitted after May 1, 2018. Therefore, we are notifying the field in advance of this change in the onboarding process for non-US citizen trainees.
    • Please make sure to mail to:
      • Timothy R. Hughes
        Medical Media, Visual Information Specialist
        Student Coordinator, Work Study Program Administrator
        VA Portland Health Care System (P2EDUC)
        3710 SW US Veterans Hospital Rd
        Portland, OR 97239
        (503) 220-8262 Ext 56992
  • Fingerprinting: Due to a Federal mandate, students must be fingerprinted prior to their arrival at VA Vancouver. This must be done NO GREATER than 120 days before the start of your rotation and no later than 6 weeks.
    • If you are local, schedule an appointment for fingerprinting by calling 503-220-8262 x56109.
    • If you are not local, you can be fingerprinted locally at VA San Francisco or VA Martinez.
      • You can get fingerprinted at the San Francisco VA on a walk-in basis:
        • The SFVA PIV (Personal Identification Verification) Office is accepting “walk-in appointments” now.
        • The office hours are Mondays through Fridays from 8 a.m. – 11 a.m. and 1 p.m. – 3 p.m.
        • Enclosed is a blank Fingerprinting form. Please complete the form and include the appropriate SOI and SON numbers to identify the VA that you will be taking the fingerprints for. Most numbers can be found in the clinic manual under the requirements for that VA site.
        • Please bring 2 original and current forms of ID (one must be a Government-issued photo ID) and your completed Fingerprinting Form to your appointment.
        • The PIV Office is located in Building 4, 2nd Floor, Room 2A-103 (San Francisco VA Medical Center, 4150 Clement Street, San Francisco, CA 94121). Click for map of VA San Francisco PIV Office.
    • VA Martinez is another location that you can go to for fingerprinting.
      • VA Northern California Health Care System Martinez – PIV Office, 150 Muir Road, Bldg. 21 Rm 219, Martinez, CA 94553, (925) 372-2000, ext. 6755. The PIV office is located inside Bldg. 21 on the second floor in room 219.  Customer parking is located in the large gravel parking lot, across the street from Bldg 21. Click for map of VA Martinez PIV Office.
      • Open Monday through Friday 8:30-12 p.m and 1-3:30 p.m. Closed for lunch between 12 and 1 p.m.
      • You can make an appointment by emailing In the subject line, please indicate for “Fingerprinting.” In the message, please provide:
        • first name and last name
        • phone number
        • email address
        • three dates and times that work for you.
      • They will reply to confirm the date of your appointment.
      • You can also do walk-in fingerprinting, but there is no guarantee that you will be seen. Wait times vary and can be 2-4 hours. Appointments are prioritized.
      • What Documents to Bring to VA Martinez: 
        • Bring two pieces of identification with you.  1) one government identity source document ID with photo and your full legal name (including middle name); 2) one government identity source document ID (photo or non-photo) with your full legal name (including middle name). For example, you may use your state issued Driver’s license and a Social Security card, Passport, Voters Registration Card, Birth Certificate, or PIV card. Expired IDs, credit cards, debit cards, school IDs are not acceptable.
    • Click here for Acceptable IDs.
    • The completed fingerprinting form. Please provide the SOI and SON (see below) of the VA that you need the fingerprints for so that they know where to send the results.
      • VA Portland/Vancouver Division Fingerprints
      • SOI# 1141
      • SON# VA79
      • Organization: VHA
      • Employee type: Student/Trainee or Affiliate (if Student/Trainee option is not available)Inform your Timothy Hughes of your fingerprint date and location
      • Inform Timothy Hughes of your fingerprint date and location
      • You will need to schedule a PIV badge appointment following your fingerprints. While the fingerprints may be done remotely, the PIV appointment must be scheduled at Portland VA. If you live locally, you need to schedule this prior to your first day. If you are coming from out of town for the rotation, please schedule the PIV appointment as early as possible on the first day of your rotation.
        1. You must make an appointment to have your photo take AFTER you have completed fingerprinting. Please call 503-220-8262 x56109 to schedule the appointment for your picture.
        2. If you had your fingerprints done remotely, you must have an appointment for a photo at Portland VA Medical Center prior to starting your rotation.
        3. The Photo ID will be picked up at the Security Office in Bldg 16.  If you do not receive an email/phone call from the Security office within 5 days of having your photo taken, please call 503-220-8262 x56109.  Include your legal first and last name and ask if your badge is ready yet.  If you have not received a response within one day, then call 503-220-8262, ext 57337.
        4. You must have two forms of ID (ie driver’s license, state issued ID, passport, Student ID) in order to pick up the VA ID card.
        5. The education department will send you an email stating that you have been “sponsored” for your badge. If you have not received this email prior to your appointment for the photo, please email to advise them of the date you have scheduled.
  • All documents must be completed and mailed 8 weeks prior to your first day. Mail to:
    • Timothy R. Hughes
      Medical Media, Visual Information Specialist
      Student Coordinator, Work Study Program Administrator
      VA Portland Health Care System (P2EDUC)
      3710 SW US Veterans Hospital Rd
      Portland, OR 97239
      (503) 220-8262 Ext 56992


  • For travel insurance coverage, please register all out-of-state travel at the UC Trips website to ensure coverage for each covered off-campus activity. You are covered from the time you start your travel to the rotation, through your rotation, and through your return trip.

Absence Policy

  • Interns are allowed two professional or sick days.  Professional days include days taken for the AAO meeting, residency interviews, NBEO and NBEO travel.  If more than two days are missed, additional missed days are made up at the VA Portland clinic on a Saturday.  If they cannot be made up at the VA Portland (Vancouver Division), they will be made up at UC Berkeley per the UCBSO absence policy.