The German Federal Ministry of Health on Wednesday approved a broad measure that would require proof of measles vaccination to access to community facilities, including daycares and schools.
The bill comes as a reaction to continued measles infections despite an effective vaccine. In 2018 there were 651 cases of measles reported, and within four months of 2019 more than 400 cases of measles were reported, indicating an escalating infection problem.
Some of the vaccination requirements of the bill include:
- All children must be able to demonstrate that they have received both measles vaccines before they may be admitted to day nurseries, schools or other community facilities.
- Employees who work or are applying to work in these facilities must also be vaccinated. This also applies to employment in medical facilities.
- Asylum seekers and refugees will also be required to vaccinate.
- People with medical contraindications and people born before 1970 are exempt from the vaccination requirement.
- Non-vaccinated children can be excluded from the daycares. Non-vaccinated people cannot be employed in any community or health facilities.
- Parents, daycares that permit unvaccinated children, unvaccinated staff, and unvaccinated asylum seekers may expect fines of up for non-compliance.
- The Public Health Service (ÖGD) will carry out more voluntary vaccinations in schools and will enter into new health insurance agreements.
This bill hopes to address vaccine hesitancy, which has become a global health problem. The law is set to take effect on March 1, 2020.