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New Vaccine Requirement For Students

San Andreas, CA– The Calaveras County Public Health Department is alerting parents and guardians of students entering 7th through 12 grade next school year of a new California immunization requirement.


All students entering 7th-12th grades must have a pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine booster before starting school. This requirement goes into effect statewide with the 2011-12 school year.


“In 2010 there were a lot of cases of pertussis not only throughout California, but even here locally,” said Calaveras County Health Officer, Dean Kelaita. “In Calaveras County, there were 9 cases in 2010.”


In response, Assembly Bill 354 was passed to require secondary school students to be vaccinated with a pertussis booster.  By law, students who do not have proof of the pertussis booster will not be able to start school on time next year. The immunization requirement can be met by receiving the pertussis vaccine now and taking the immunization record to school.


Kelaita says that whooping cough spreads easily from person to person when an infected person coughs or sneezes but it is preventable by vaccination.


“We want parents, number one, to be aware of this and we want to make it available for them.  So the Calaveras County Health Department will be holding a special clinic so parents can bring their children into our Health Department in order to get the vaccine that they need. They can also get it through their local regular medical provider.”


The special Pertussis (Tdap) Vaccine Clinic is planned for Tuesday, March 1st from 9:00 am – 6:30 pm at the Public Health Main Office at 700 Mountain Road, Suite C-2 in San Andreas.


Written by tina.falco@mlode.com