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Health unit can suspend students from school for out-of-date vaccination records

THUNDER BAY -- The health unit can and will suspend students from school if vaccinations aren't up to date.
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Thunder Bay District Health Unity acting medical officer of health Janet DeMille. (Jamie Smith, tbnewswatch.com)

THUNDER BAY -- The health unit can and will suspend students from school if vaccinations aren't up to date.

The Thunder Bay District Health Unit is mandated by the province to enforce the Immunization of School Pupils Act, which in part calls for students to be suspended from school if vaccination requirements aren't being met.

Acting medical officer of health Janet DeMille said notices are heading home with students right now that a parent or guardian must show that a child's records are up to date with the required immunizations.

"Unless there's a particular reason not to have them," she said.

Once a notice goes out, the parent or guardian has four weeks to get the student's record into the health unit or get the required vaccination.

DeMille said after that another notice goes out. If the health unit still hasn't received anything, the student could and should be suspended from school.

"We will issue a suspension order and the schools support that," DeMille said.

"We do give parents lots of warning that we're doing that and lots of opportunity to either do the reporting or get their child up to date on their immunization."