JCPS enforcing state’s new immunization requirements

JCPS will be enforcing the state’s new immunization requirements including two doses of the Hepatitis A vaccine and up to two doses of the meningococcal vaccine.

Parents should get their students vaccinated as soon as possible according to the district since the minimum space between dosing for Hepatitis A requires at least a 6-month waiting period.

“Over the past several years that has been an increase in the incidence of Hepatitis A across the country. By increasing the number of people vaccinated for Hepatitis A, we can decrease the spread of the disease,” Megan Habich, advanced practice registered nurse for the district said.

Meningitis Vaccinations

Students also must get a second, booster vaccine for meningitis unless the student is 16 years old and has never had the vaccine before. In that case, the student will only need one vaccination.

“Studies have shown that people who receive the meningococcal vaccine at age 11 require a booster at age 16 in order for the vaccine to continue to be effective. There is an increased incidence of meningitis amongst young adults who live in settings with multiple people, such as dorms,” Habich said.

According to the district, a lot of students have already received the necessary vaccines since several doctors have administered it already on their own recommendations.

Students will need to check with their health care provider to see if they have already received the necessary vaccines, in which case they should still request an updated immunization record to turn into the office.

Enforcement and Communication

Students will be receiving a letter directly from the school informing them of the new updates. There will also be multiple attempts to connect to parents through social media and emails.

“Every school in the district has a letter, drafted by the District Health Coordinator and district Nurse Practitioners, that will be sent out to parents before the winter break notifying them of the changes. The district Nurse Practitioners will continue to communicate with parents and schools regarding the changes,” Habich said.

JCPS currently has policies in place to ensure students get appropriate vaccines before the 2018-19 school year.

“The district will continue to follow those policies and procedures in order to remain in compliance with the updated state regulation (KRS 902 KAR 2:060),” Habich said.

The new state requirements stems from an outbreak of Hepatitis A declared by the Kentucky Department of Health.

Students should bring an updated copy of their immunization records to the office by the beginning of the next school year.

Parents with questions or concerns with the updates to the immunization requirements should contact JCPS Health Services at 485-3887.

See below for the full letter mailed to all JCPS parents:

Important Immunization Update for Students

Starting July 1, 2018, the state of Kentucky will be requiring all students in kindergarten through grade twelve to provide proof of having received two doses of hepatitis A vaccine. Since the minimum spacing between the two doses is six months, families are asked to complete the following steps as soon as possible to ensure that their child is compliant with this new regulation prior to the beginning of the new school year on August 15, 2018:

  1. Consult with your child’s healthcare provider to ensure that these vaccines have been given to your child, or make an appointment to begin the vaccination series.
  2. Obtain an updated Kentucky Immunization Certificate from your provider.
  3. Turn in a copy of a current Immunization Certificate to your child’s school.

Also new for the 2018-19 school year, all students age 16 years or older are required to show proof of having received two doses of meningococcal ACWY vaccine. To ensure compliance, families are asked to do the following:

  1. Consult with your child’s healthcare provider to ensure that these vaccines have been given to your child, or make an appointment for your child to receive the vaccine(s). If your child has not previously received a dose of the vaccine and is age 16 or older, only one dose is required.
  2. Obtain an updated Kentucky Immunization Certificate from your provider.
  3. Turn in a copy of a current Immunization Certificate to your child’s school.
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