In Indiana, children must have certain vaccinations to attend school or daycare. Indiana law also requires healthcare providers to register personal vaccinations in a database system. Some exemptions to the state law allow parents to opt out from both rules.
Required immunizations in Indiana include diphtheria, whooping cough, tetanus, measles, rubella, polio and mumps. Children entering kindergarten must also be immunized against hepatitis B and chicken pox. School-age children also must be immunized against meningitis and varicella.
New In 2014-2015, is the requirement to have a Hepatitis A vaccine in kindergarten and a meningococcal booster before grade 12, according to the Indiana State Department of Health
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A medical exemption is available on a vaccine-by-vaccine basis, according to the health department
. Indiana requests healthcare providers list any adverse reactions to vaccinations or other clinical reasons a student might be in danger if given the vaccine. The exemption may be permanent or temporary for up to a year. The form must be signed by a physician.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures
, Indiana is among the states that offer a religious and philosophical exemption from school vaccinations. Indiana also has provisions for parents to delay the immunization schedule.
Exemptions reported for kindergarteners in the 2014-15 school year included 271 medical exemptions and 420 religious exemptions, amounting to 1.15 percent of students, the health department reported
. Among sixth-graders there were 207 medical exemptions and 557 religious exemptions, amounting to 1.23 percent of students.
For parents who do not immunize out of financial concerns or lack of medical insurance, the federal Vaccines For Children
(VFC) program can potentially provide for free vaccines.
The Indiana State Department of Health provides an immunization registry program for residents to make keeping track of vaccines easier. The Children and Hoosiers Immunization Registry Program (CHIRP) requires
healthcare providers, including pharmacies, to register vaccination records online for any immunizations given to children under the age of 19.
Schools can access student vaccination information on the CHIRP system with parental permission.
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While doctors are required to report, patients are not required to participate. However, everyone will be participating unless they act to fill out an opt-out form. To be exempt from this registry, parents or individuals have to fill out an opt-out form called the Immunization Registry Data Exclusion Request. It must be given to a health care provider and kept on file at the provider’s office.
Healthcare workers are required to get certain annual immunizations. However, the same kind of medical and religious exemptions can be applied. An employee may also simply refuse the immunization after hearing about the health risks.
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