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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, February 28, 2017 | 9:00 a.m. | Windsor and Essex County

The Windsor-Essex County Health Unit suspended 689 students due to incomplete immunization records today. Final suspension notices were sent to students born in grade 11 and 12 on February 1st urging students to update their immunization records before the February 28th suspension date.

"Suspensions, while mandated by law through the Immunization of School Pupils Act, are a last resort for us," said Stacy Manzerolle, manager of the Healthy Schools program at the Windsor-Essex County Health Unit. "Although the suspensions can last up to 20 days, we are hoping students will update their records in a timely manner."

Suspended students have two ways to update their immunization records

Having a health care provider call or fax proof of immunization to the Health Unit. (Fax: 519-258-7288)
Bringing the proof of immunization in person to the Health Unit to one of the following locations between the hours of 8:30 a.m. – 4:30 p.m., Monday through Friday:

Windsor: 1005 Ouellette Ave. Windsor, Ontario N9A 4J8
Essex: 360 Fairview Ave. West, Suite 215 Essex, Ontario N8M 3G4
Leamington: 33 Princess Street, Leamington, Ontario N8H 5C5

If suspended students wish to return to school the same day they update their record with the Health Unit, they will need to visit the Health Unit in person to obtain a rescind letter and present it to their school principal. Otherwise they may wait until the following school day at which time they will no longer be on the suspension list.

Health Unit staff will attempt to process student information as soon as possible, but it may take until the end of the current school day. Updated suspension lists will be faxed to school principals each morning before 8:00 a.m.

WECHU will continue to offer immunization clinics to school aged children at both the Windsor and Leamington offices by appointment. These clinics are free and a health card is not required. To book an appointment call 519-258-2146 ext. 1222

BACKGROUND:
The Immunization of School Pupils Act (ISPA), which became law in 1990, protects the health of children and the community by ensuring students are up-to-date with their immunizations in an effort to stop the spread of vaccine preventable diseases. There are nine immunizations required for school aged children:

  • Diphtheria
  • Pertussis
  • Tetanus
  • Polio
  • Measles
  • Mumps
  • Rubella
  • Meningococcal Disease
  • Varicella (chickenpox) *proof of this vaccine is required for children born in 2010 or later.

Immunizations are shown to be safe and effective for lowering the risk of getting sick from a variety of diseases. Everyone in Ontario is encouraged to get all the required and recommended immunizations.

Some students may be eligible for exemptions (e.g., due to a medical reason such as an allergy). Exemption forms can be obtained by calling the Health Unit.

Media Contact
Communications Department
Windsor-Essex County Health Unit
519-258-2146 ext. 6397 (NEWS)
news@wechu.org