Italy Begins To Enforce 'No Vaccines, No School' Policy After Deadline Expires

Maricruz Casares
Marcha 14, 2019

Italian children are no longer allowed to attend school unless they can prove they have been properly vaccinated under a new law.

The action takes place after months of national debate over imposed vaccination.

Those aged between six and 16 can not be banned from attending school, but their parents face fines if they do not complete the mandatory course of immunisations.

According to the BBC, Italy has fallen behind other countries in terms of vaccination rates.

So far, it has been reported that in Bologna, authorities have sent suspension letters to parents over more than 300 children, and a total of 5,000 kids do not have up-to-date vaccination documents. It also fines parents of children between 6 and 16 years old about $560 if they can not prove their children have been vaccinated.

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They include vaccinations for chickenpox, polio, measles, mumps, and rubella.

"Italy's measles vaccine coverage was par with Namibia, lower than Ghana", commented Roberto Burioni, a professor of microbiology and virology at San Raffaele University in Milan.

"Now everyone has had time to catch up", Health Minister Giulia Grillo told Italian newspaper La Repubblica, the BBC reported.

The law was slated to go into effect at the beginning of the school year in September, but Italy's anti-establishment Five Star government voted to amend the law, meaning it could not go into effect ahead of the new school year.

Across the world, health authorities are grappling with a global resurgence of measles, with record numbers recorded in Europe and deadly outbreaks in the Philippines and Madagascar.

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