Reports: New York Board of Health votes unanimously to require flu vaccination for children in day care, preschool

Coverage rates have risen slowly since last year, board says

NEW YORK — All children attending day care or preschool in New York must get a flu vaccine by the end of the year, according to published reports.

CBS News reported that the city's Board of Health voted unanimously Wednesday to require all children younger than 5 attending a day care or preschool to receive the vaccine before Dec. 31.

"Vaccinating children produces 'herd immunity' in the general population," a notice issued by the board earlier this year on a planned meeting about the proposed rule read. "This means that vaccinating children against influenza reduces the number of influenza infections in everyone else, regardless of whether they were vaccinated or not."

The notice noted that despite promotion of influenza vaccination for children, coverage rates have risen slowly, with 61% of children aged 6 months through 5 years receiving the vaccine, compared with 56.7% in 2012.

"This still leaves nearly 4 out of every 10 young children unprotected," the notice read. "Furthermore, young children are at high risk of influenza-related complications and hospitalization, making this vulnerable group especially important to protect."

 

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