Parents of school aged children will face a new requirement for their children for the 2017-2018 school year. New guides for immunizations for Meningococcus are being released by the Iowa Department of Public Health.
Under the new guidelines, the Iowa Department of Public Health are requiring one dose of the meningococcal vaccine for those students who are 10 years of age and in the seventh grade, or above, if they were born after September 15, 2004; and two doses for those students entering the 12th grade, if they were born after September 15, 1999; or one dose if the child received their first dose of the meningococcal vaccine after the age of 16.
These new vaccination requirements will affect all sixth graders going into seventh grade and 11th graders going into 12th grade for the upcoming 2017-2018 school year.
The Palo Alto County Community Health Service will conduct an audit for the immunization of the seventh and 12th grade classes for this school year and encourages parents of these students to make sure their children are immunized to meet the requirement.
A certificate of immunization that includes the Meningococcal conjugate vaccine must be submitted to the school the child attends. There will be no extension period for the implementation of this requirement. All seventh graders born after Sept. 15, 2004 will need to submit a completed Certificate of Immunization with the meningococcal conjugate vaccination (MenACWY), or a Certificate of Immunization Exemption before enrolling in school.
All 12th grade students born after Sept. 15, 1999 will need to submit a completed Certificate of Immunization with the meningococcal conjugate vaccination (MenACWY), a Certificate of Provisional Enrollment or a Certificate of Immunization Exemption before enrolling in school.
The Palo Alto County Community Health Service will be offering a meningococcal clinic in the schools at the end of March. Dates and times of these clinics will be announced in each district in the county.
Parents wanting their child to have the meningococcal vaccination at one of these clinics will need to complete forms sent home from their child's school so that Community Health can have adequate serum for the clinics.
For more questions, contact Palo Alto County Community Health and Kasaundra Jensen, RN, at 712-852-5419.