This Version Posted: March 13, 2020

Student Suspensions For Having Out-of-Date Vaccination Records on Hold Until Fall, Health Unit Says

School suspensions for local students missing vaccinations or having out-of-date immunization records have been suspended.

The Haliburton, Kawartha, Pine Ridge District Health Unit is postponing its enforcement of the Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA) for the rest of this school year. Any follow-up with affected students and their families have been put over to summer and fall, due to the Health Unit’s current response to COVID-19 in the area.

“We appreciate and thank those parents who have already taken steps to update their children’s immunization records,” says Denise Smith, Manager of Health Protection with the HKPR District Health Unit. “However, the current COVID-19 situation necessitates we direct all our efforts to working with our health care partners to coordinate and respond to coronavirus in Haliburton County, Northumberland County and the City of Kawartha Lakes.”

Under the ISPA, all Ontario students attending school must be fully vaccinated against diphtheria, tetanus, polio, measles, mumps, rubella, pertussis (whooping cough), varicella (chickenpox) and meningococcal disease. If vaccines are missing, Ontario health units issue school suspension orders to these students.

In recent months, the Health Unit has been working to update vaccines and records with students and their families who faced possible suspension. Smith says the Health Unit will continue this work once it’s able, but in the meantime encourages families to go online to update and check their records.

The Immunization Connect Ontario – or ICON web site – is a convenient way for families to check, manage and update vaccination records.

For media inquiries, contact:

Denise Smith, Manager of Health Protection, HKPR District Health Unit, 1-866-888-4577, ext. 2265.