Cornwall Ontario – The Eastern Ontario Health Unit (EOHU) is reminding parents of the importance of updating their children’s immunization record before the start of the school year. By law, proof of immunization is required for all children who are enrolled in schools or licensed daycares. Incomplete or missing records could delay or prevent a child’s attendance at school or daycare.
Ontario’s Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA) was created to protect children from vaccine-preventable diseases, and to reduce the risk of disease outbreaks in schools and daycares. According to the ISPA, parents are required to provide the EOHU with proof of their child’s immunization against certain diseases, or with the appropriate exemption documents if the child is not immunized. The ISPA also requires the EOHU to review immunization records and contact parents of children for whom they do not have complete records.
“In order to keep their child’s immunization record up to date, parents are responsible for informing the EOHU every time their child receives a vaccine,” states Linda Cléroux, Program Manager, Vaccine Preventable Diseases at the EOHU. “Many parents think that their healthcare provider gives us this information, but they do not. Parents need to call the health unit themselves to report their child’s immunization.” Without proof or proper documentation, parents may receive a letter from the EOHU and their child could be suspended from school or daycare until their immunization records are complete. Cléroux adds that if parents aren’t sure whether their child’s immunization record is up to date, the EOHU can review their child’s record with them.
To report that your child has received a vaccine, or to inquire about the status of your child’s immunization record, call the Eastern Ontario Health Unit at 613-933-1375 or 1 800 267-7120 and ask for Health Line. You can also visit www.eohu.ca for additional information about immunizations.