Health Program Requirements

Northeast Iowa Community College reserves the right to deny admission, acceptance, participation and/or continued participation to any healthcare program per agency policy. Students in healthcare programs are required to comply with any and all policies and procedures created and implemented by NICC and its clinical affiliates.

Students are advised that any and all healthcare facilities associated with NICC may deny admission to or remove any student placed in the facility if, at the discretion of the healthcare facility, the admission of the student or the continued presence of the student would present or continue a risk to the healthcare facility or any of its patients or employees.

As the healthcare environment continues to evolve, we work with our clinical partners to provide the best learning opportunities for Nursing & Allied Health students. Because of your contact with vulnerable patients and/or infective material from patients, you are at risk for exposing patients and being exposed to and possible transmission of vaccine-preventable diseases. Maintenance of immunity is, therefore, an essential part of prevention for healthcare workers. It is important to recognize that most infectious diseases are contagious before a person is symptomatic. It is your professional responsibility to know and keep current with your immunizations and health requirements.

NICC contracts with CastleBranch to manage background checks, clinical requirements and drug testing. You will receive a letter instructing you on how to initiate this process. In addition, this letter will contain information regarding the cost of utilizing and the deadline for initiating and completing this process.

It is the student’s responsibility to purchase the CastleBranch package and meet the associated deadlines. Students that fail to purchase this package and/or meet the health, training, background and/or drug testing requirements will not be allowed to enter or continue in the program. Students are responsible for all financial liabilities associated with not meeting these requirements.

For students applying to the Kirkwood Community College Surgical Technology program, of which we are a partner, please be aware that Kirkwood Community College has similar requirements. Upon acceptance, Kirkwood will notify you of their requirements and procedures.

Clinical/Field Requirements

Prior to participating in the clinical/field portion of any health program  students must submit the following evidence to CastleBranch.

Health Requirements

  • COVID-19 Primary Series Vaccination - All clinical agencies to which nursing and allied health program students are assigned require COVID-19 vaccination as a condition of engaging in clinical activities at their facilities. Additionally, at this time, clinical agencies are not accepting religious exemptions and are accepting limited medical exemptions. Any exemption requests may be directed to Danielle White, Compliance Coordinator,
  • Annual Flu vaccination
  • Current physical
  • Hepatitis B vaccine or positive surface antibody titer or a Declination waiver
  • Tetanus, Diphtheria & Pertussis (Tdap) vaccine from any time period and a TD; OR Tdap booster within the past 10 years
  • Two Measles, Mumps and Rubella (MMR) immunizations or positive antibody titer
  • Tuberculosis Symptom Screening and Risk Assessment
  • Tuberculosis Baseline Screening
  • Two Varicella (Chicken Pox) vaccines or Positive Varicella titer or Medical documented History of Disease

Students should be aware that some clinical sites may have additional requirements. Students are responsible for meeting these requirements and for the cost associated with these requirements.

Other Requirements

  • Certified Nurse Aide (nursing only)
    • Completion of a 75+ CNA course
    • Direct Care Worker Registry
  • CPR Completion
    • American Heart Association Health Professional BLS  
    • American Red Cross CPR for the Health Care Providers
  • Health Insurance
  • Mandatory  program &  clinical orientation(s)*
  • Mandatory Reporter for Child and Dependent Adult Abuse Training
  • NICC HIPAA & Bloodborne Pathogens Trainings*
  • NICC picture identification*
  • Policy & Procedure Manual (PPM) review and forms
  • Uniforms, supplies and equipment, as applicable*

*items not submitted to CastleBranch

Each candidate‚Äôs criminal history, child abuse and dependent adult abuse records will be evaluated by NICC, and if applicable, the Iowa Department of Human Services. Until this evaluation is complete and approved, the student will be denied enrollment to any of the NICC healthcare programs. The background guidelines listed were established in conjunction with NICC clinical partners. Students identified as meeting one or more of the below criteria have the potential of being denied acceptance to any of the NICC healthcare programs. Students must remain in compliance with these guidelines throughout their program of study.

At Any Time

  • Refusal to participate in the background check or evaluation process.
  • Iowa DHS record check evaluation determines the student is not eligible to participate in the clinical portion of the course and/or to work in a healthcare facility.
  • A felony conviction.
  • A felony, serious misdemeanor or aggravated misdemeanor charge with an outstanding disposition or warrant.
  • A serious misdemeanor or aggravated misdemeanor conviction in which the probationary period has not been completed.
  • A criminal conviction, of any kind, related to past employment, and/or a healthcare system or organization.
  • Inclusion on the child, dependent adult and/or sexual abuse registry.

The Past 10 Years

  • A criminal conviction, of any kind related to illegal distribution or theft of drugs.

The Past 5 Years

  • A serious or aggravated misdemeanor conviction of theft or a pattern of theft convictions.
  • Two OWI convictions.

The Past Two Years

  • A criminal conviction related to the possession of drugs, paraphernalia and/or illegal substances.

The Past Year

  • An OWI Conviction.

Any of the criteria listed below may disqualify you from enrollment in the College's healthcare programs based on factors such as job/program relatedness, patterns, timeframes and/or completion of sentence.

  • A misdemeanor conviction involving injury, violence or sexual misconduct.
  • A pattern of criminal convictions or charges.
  • Recent criminal conviction(s) or charges of any type.

*While enrolled in any healthcare program at NICC, it is expected that students report all child abuse, dependent adult abuse, sex abuse and/or criminal activity, in which they are involved, to NICC within forty-eight (48) hours of the incident. Failure to do so could result in criminal charges per Iowa Code and removal from the program.

Students must present themselves to the clinical affiliates free from the use of all illegal drugs, free from the use of non-prescribed prescription medications, free from the use and effects of alcohol and aware of the effects of legally prescribed medications. Students enrolled in a healthcare program at NICC are required to submit and successfully pass pre-clinical, random, post-accident and suspicion drug screens.

Nursing Students

If you have had a criminal conviction or are convicted of a crime while a nursing student at NICC, the completion of the Nursing Program at NICC does not guarantee that you will be able to sit for the NCLEX exam or that a license to practice will be issued by the Board of Nursing. It is, for this reason, that all students considering a nursing career are informed of this matter prior to entering the program.

All Health Students

There are separate credentialing agencies and licensing boards for each program. These bodies along with employers have their own background, health and drug testing requirements and will not make a determination on credentialing, licensure or employment until the time of application. Thus, even if you are able to complete a healthcare program, NICC has no control over credentialing agencies, licensing boards or employer decisions.

NICC strongly encourages you to periodically check the appropriate credentialing, licensing, and if applicable, employer websites to verify current standards and monitor changes to these standards.