Medical Advisory - Update Immunization Records For All School Aged Children

Released April 11, 2017

​Issued by: M. Mustafa Hirji, MD, MPH, FRCPC Associate Medical Officer of Health

Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA)

  • ​Public Health is required to ensure up-to-date immunization for all students for the following:
    • ​Tetanus
    • Diphtheria
    • Pertussis
    • Polio
    • Measles
    • Mumps
    • Rubella
    • Meningococcal
  • ​Between April 4 and April 18, approximately 2200 suspension letters will be mailed to homes of students for whom Public Health does not have records of up-to-date immunization
  • These letters will inform of the impending suspension of the student from school beginning on May 23, 2017 unless records of up-to-date immunization or a valid exemption is provided

Updating Immunizations

  • ​The suspension notices may prompt an increased number of calls to your office requesting an immunization appointment or to discuss immunization needs
  • In some cases, it may be necessary to complete a statement of medical exemption for your patient
    • Note that a Statement of Medical Exemption should be signed only if the vaccine is deemed to be unsafe for the client (e.g. allergic to a component of the vaccine) or unnecessary for the client (e.g. already immune from natural infection, or has serologic evidence of immunity)
    • Other reasons not to vaccinate (e.g. philosophical objection) instead require a Statement of Conscience or Religious Belief, which must be completed by the parent/legal guardian
  • The teenage tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis booster is due 10 years after the school entry booster
  • Please ensure that you have enough vaccine in your office to accommodate this potential demand. Additional vaccine supply may be requested through the Vaccine Preventable Disease program or via the online ordering form 

Additional Information

  • Information regarding the ISPA and exemptions from vaccination can be found online

For further information, please contact Niagara Region Public Health, Vaccine Preventable Disease program at 1-888-505-6074 or 905-688-8248 ext. 7425 Monday to Friday 8:30 am to 4:30 pm


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