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Mandatory immunization reporting in effect for first day of school in B.C.

Last Updated Sep 2, 2019 at 1:47 pm PDT

Summary

A new mandatory immunization reporting requirement has come into effect

The Province also ran an immunization catch-up program from April to June 2019

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) — B.C. parents might have to add “immunization records” to the list of supplies their kids will need for the first day of classes Tuesday.

New reporting requirements are kicking in this month for everyone in grades K to 12. In the weeks ahead, school enrollment records will start being matched with immunization records. Parents whose kids’ records aren’t in the provincial immunization registry will get a phone call reminding them to update their records.

Minister of Health Adrian Dix says most parents are not going to be affected by this change, which is meant to help schools figure out who is vulnerable in the event of an outbreak, and not to force immunization on parents who don’t want to vaccinate their kids.

“If your child isn’t immunized and there’s an outbreak of the measles in a school than obviously your child, under those circumstances, would be excluded from school–potentially for a significant period of time,” Dix says.

This is the latest piece of the government’s plan to up immunization rates in B.C. following measles outbreaks earlier this year.

Parents who aren’t sure where their records are can check if they’re online.