Flu Preparations Underscore Schools' Key Role in Vaccinations
Research Confirms Exemptions Lead to Higher Disease Incidence
At the beginning of each school year, the school-nurse coordinator for the 3,000-student Ashland, Ore., district plans a “parents night” around the topic of vaccinations for the safety and health of children.
But that’s only the beginning of Belinda Brown’s contact with parents who are skeptical about the necessity of immunizations, a routine part of preventative care for most families.
While the vaccination-exemption rate for kindergarten students in Oregon is around 4 percent, in Ashland, about 28 percent of kindergarten students have exemptions on file, meaning they are missing one or more of the 10 vaccines required by the state for their grade. And so Ms. Brown starts every school year gently urging parents to consider all the risks to their child before forgoing inoculations. But most of all, she listens as...
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