Unvaccinated children in Italy banned from preschool under new law

14 March, 2019, 19:38 | Author: Kara Nash
  • An Italian doctor checks a syringe before vaccinating a child in Rome

Italian children under six who haven't had their compulsory vaccinations will be turned away from school - and their parents fined up to €500 - under a new law.

After the notorious study by Dr. Andrew Wakefield that linked measles vaccine to autism, there has been rise in anti-vaccination sentiments among parents.

Children under age six will be excluded from nursery and kindergarten without proof of vaccinations under the new law.

But up until Tuesday, a temporary measure meant students could remain in school as long as their parents said they were vaccinated. Students of that age reportedly can't be barred from classes. Despite political pressure to extend the deadline, Health Minister Giulia Grillo kept it at March 11, saying "No vaccine, no school".

There have been protests over the law changes around vaccinations in Italy. The BBC added that Italian media reported regional authorities are "handling the situation in a number of different ways", with no notices of suspension reported in some areas and grace periods allowed in others.


In Bologna, officials said the 300 children did not present the official document attesting to their vaccination Monday, and so could not attend public nursery schools.

The 95% threshold is the point at which "herd immunity" kicks in - when enough of the population is vaccinated for the spread of the disease to become unlikely, thereby protecting those who can not be vaccinated.

Newly released figures show that Italy is nearing, and in some regions has already reached, a national immunization rate of 95 per cent, the World Health Organization's target. His immune system was compromised as he was recovering from leukaemia.

The outbreak prompted the government to formulate tough laws.

The two populist parties in power had faced accusations that they were pursuing anti-vaccination policies. In 2017, vaccination rates were around 80 per cent.

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