MADISON (WKBT) — Updates to childcare and school immunization rules go into effect as soon as Wednesday, the Wisconsin DHS announced.
Here is what will be changing:
- Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and acellular pertussis vaccine) is required at the start of seventh grade. Previously this vaccine was required at the start of sixth grade. This change is to better align with the recommended age (age 11) at which children should receive the vaccine.
- MenACWY-containing vaccine is added to the requirements for students entering seventh grade, and a booster dose for eligible students entering 12th grade.
- Exceptions to the varicella (chickenpox) vaccine requirement for childcare centers and schools will be permitted only if the child’s case has been confirmed by a qualified health care provider. Parental confirmation is no longer accepted, however existing exemption options still apply.
- Definitions of “substantial outbreak” are updated for both childcare centers and schools by revising to align with CDC definitions and to add chickenpox and meningococcal disease to the definitions.
- Schools are required to provide reports of vaccine compliance and disease outbreaks to DHS in addition to the previously existing requirement to report to local health departments.
- Outdated provisions relating to the 2008-2009 phase-in of Tdap and varicella vaccines have been removed.
DHS says the established list of required vaccinations are left unchanged, as are existing exemptions for medical, religious, or philosophical reasons. There is no requirement for flue or COVID-19 vaccination, though they are still strongly recommended.
The new rules go into effect on Wednesday for childcare centers, and at the beginning of the 2023-24 school year for school-age children.
Resources on routine childhood vaccinations can be found here.
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