SAN RAFAEL (CBS SF) — A new law may be reversing a rise in the percent of kindergartners exempt from vaccinations in Marin County, county officials said.
Between 2002 and 2012 the percent of kindergartners exempt from vaccinations jumped from 3.7 percent to 7.8 percent. A law that went into affect last year requires parents who don’t want their child to be vaccinated to have a conversation about immunization with a healthcare provider.READ MORE: Belmont Neighborhood Search For Aggressive Mountain Lion
By the end of the year, the percent of kindergartners that did not get vaccinations dropped to 6.5 percent.
“We found that parents are trying to navigate the best choices for their children and don’t always have access to the facts,” said Marin County public health officer Dr. Matt Willis in a statement. “When parents really understand the risk of disease and the safety of the vaccines that prevent disease, more choose to immunize their children.”READ MORE: Three Of Tonga’s Smaller Islands Badly Damaged By Tsunami; Concerns Mount Within Bay Area Tongan Community
The change is pleasing to county officials who have said that in some schools more than 50 percent of kindergartners are exempt from vaccinations.
“This is a particular concern this year, with 59 cases of measles reported so far statewide,” said Marin County Immunization program public health nurse Danielle Hiser in a statement. “We’re lucky that we haven’t had communities. A recent Disneyland outbreak is an unfortunate reminder of how low vaccination rates are not just a hypothetical threat, but a real one.”MORE NEWS: Splash Brothers Curry, Thompson Lead Warriors Past Pistons, 102-86
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