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Nurse Carlene Fleming administers COVID-19 vaccine to a patient at a mobile vaccination event at the downtown Orlando campus of the University of Central Florida and Valencia College. Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Unvaccinated students at West Virginia Wesleyan College will be required to pay a "COVID fee" this fall and students who are unvaccinated at Birmingham–Southern College in Alabama will be required to pay for weekly testing.

Driving the news: West Virginia Wesleyan College will require all unvaccinated students to pay a nonrefundable $750 fee. There, students are not required to get the vaccine but are encouraged to do so before the fall semester, per NBC.

  • Unvaccinated students must also wear masks and social distance on campus and undergo weekly testing.
  • The fees will "cover the expenses that will come with increased testing and other resources that the college will have to utilize and deploy to keep every student safe," James Moore, the school's dean, told NBC affiliate WBOY of Clarksburg, West Virginia.

At Birmingham–Southern College, unvaccinated students must pay $500 at the start of the fall semester to pay for weekly testing and quarantining.

  • Students who are vaccinated will be issued an immediate refund, per NBC.
  • "We're not trying to charge everyone $500, we're trying to keep everybody safe," the college president, Daniel Coleman, told NBC affiliate WVTM of Birmingham. "If it encourages people to be vaccinated then that's good, I think, for our campus and the safety of our campus."

Go deeper

Updated Oct 21, 2021 - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Aïda Amer/Axios

  1. Vaccines: Pfizer booster has 95.6% efficacy, large study shows — FDA authorizes mix-and-match for booster shots — J&J expects $2.5 billion of vaccine sales this year.
  2. Health: Cases and deaths keep falling — White House unveils plan to "quickly" vaccinate kids ages 5-11 — The global coronavirus vaccine gap — Gates Foundation to send $120 million of antiviral pills to lower-income countries.
  3. Politics: Reports: Brazil leader to be accused of crimes against humanity over COVID — Puerto Rico leads U.S. vaccination rates — Hawaii invites fully vaccinated travelers to return from Nov. 1.
  4. Education: Education secretary reveals limits to Biden’s mask push on states — LA extends deadline for school employee vaccinations — Parent sues Wisconsin school district after child tests positive.
  5. Variant tracker: Where different strains are spreading.

DeSantis to convene state legislature to fight COVID vaccine mandates

Photo: Paul Hennessy/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images

Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis announced Thursday that he will convene a special session of the state legislature to combat coronavirus vaccine mandates enacted by businesses and "provide protections for employees."

Why it matters: This is the Republican governor's latest move to penalize local entities that implement mask or vaccine mandates to contain the spread of the virus.

Oct 21, 2021 - Health

India crosses 1 billion COVID vaccinations milestone

A health worker inoculates a COVID-19 vaccine dose to a man wearing a face mask of Prime Minister Narendra Modi in Beawar, India, in September. Photo: Sumit Saraswat/Pacific Press/LightRocket via Getty Images

India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi announced Thursday that the country's health workers have now administered more than 1 billion COVID-19 vaccines doses.

Of note: While this is a significant milestone for the country of 1.4 billion, which has been devastated by the coronavirus, only about 30% of the eligible population has been fully vaccinated against the virus, per AP. Roughly 75% have received at least one dose.