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School Immunization Toolkit

 

Welcome to the School Immunization Toolkit!

Schools play a vital role in ensuring children receive the vaccines they need to live long healthy lives.  Public Health Law Section 2164(7)(a), requires that schools ensure students meet these requirements for school entry.  Schools must also complete an annual immunization survey online and report the immunization status of all students in grades pre-kindergarten through 12.  This toolkit links schools with information and resources to assist you in meeting the school immunization requirements that protect your students and broader school community.

Within this toolkit you will find:

  • NYS Immunization requirements for school enrollment/attendance.
  • Immunization Schedules.
  • Immunization-Related Medical Exemptions for School-Aged Children.
  • How to enroll in the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS).
  • NYS Public Health Law Section 2164 Requirements on Schools.
  • Annual School Survey Requirements.
  • Guides, Fact Sheets, Posters, and Frequently Asked Questions on Influenza, Meningococcal, and HPV.
  • Pneumococcal Vaccine Requirements.

Your local health department immunization staff are your go-to local resource regarding school vaccination requirements and related questions.  For a directory of local health departments, visit NYSACHO Member Directory. For questions regarding child care programs, schools and post-secondary institutions contact the NYSDOH Bureau of Immunization’s School Assessment and Compliance Unit at phone: 518-474-1944, email: osas@health.ny.gov, or refer to the New York State Department of Health, the Immunization Action Coalition and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. We also encourage you to utilize the website and material developed for The Campaign to ImmuNYze all New Yorkers which can be accessed at www.immunyze.org.

Table of Contents

  1. New York State Immunization Requirements for School Entrance/Attendance
  2. Immunization Schedules
  3. Required Vaccines
  4. Public Health Law
  5. NYSIIS and HCS
  6. Medical Exemptions
  7. School Immunization Survey
  8. Influenza
  9. Human Papillomavirus (HPV)
  10. Glossary
  11. Additional Resources

New York State Immunization Requirements for School Entrance/Attendance

Students are required to meet minimum vacation requirements in order to attend school in New York State.  Click on the link below to view the current immunization requirements for school entrance/attendance.

  1. Immunization Requirements for School Entrance/Attendance for the 2020-21 school year

    Source: New York State Department of Health

Immunization Schedules

Routine vaccines help protect children and adolescents from 16 serious diseases. These parent-friendly schedules outline what vaccines are recommended at which ages.

  1. Recommended Child and Adolescent Immunization Schedule for ages 18 years or younger, United States, 2020
    Source:  CDC
  2. Catch-up immunization schedule for persons aged 4 months–18 years who start late or who are more than 1 month behind, United States, 2020
    Source: CDC

Required Vaccines

  1. Vaccine That May Be Recorded on Immunization Records
    1. Vaccines that may be recorded on immunization records
      Source: New York State Department of Health
  2. Pneumococcal Vaccine Requirements
    1. Pneumococcal Vaccine Requirements for New York State Daycare Entrance/Attendance by Age and Vaccination History:Infants and Toddlers Less Than 2 Years of Age
      Source: New York State Department of Health
  3. Meningococcal Disease
    1. Frequently Asked Questions About Meningococcal Disease
      Source: New York State Department of Health
    2. Meningococcal Flyer for Parents
      Source: New York State Department of Health
    3. Meningococcal Vaccine Q & A for Healthcare Providers
      Source: New York State Department of Health

Public Health Law

Public Health Law Section 2164(7)(a) requires that: “No principal, teacher, owner or person in charge of a school shall permit any child to be admitted to such school, or to attend such school, in excess of fourteen days, without the certificate provided for in subdivision five of this section or some other acceptable evidence of the child’s immunization against poliomyelitis, mumps, measles, diphtheria, rubella, varicella, hepatitis B, tetanus and pertussis and, where applicable, Haemophilus influenzae type b (Hib), meningococcal disease and pneumococcal disease; provided, however, such fourteen day period may be extended to not more than thirty days for an individual student by the appropriate principal, teacher, owner or other person in charge where such student is transferring from out-of-state or from another country and can show a good faith effort to get the necessary certification or other evidence of immunization.”

NYS Public Health Law Section 613 requires licensed and registered day-care programs and schools to post information about the flu and flu vaccine for parents. It’s easy to comply. Just post the NYSDOH’s “Fight Flu at Home and School” publication in your school or facility from early fall through May where it can be easily seen by parents and caregivers.

  1. Dear Superintendent/Principal/School Nurse Regarding Public Health Law 2164(7)(a)
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  2. Public Health Law Section 2164
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  3. New York Codes, Rules and Regulations (NYCRR) Title 10, Subpart 66-1
    Source: New York State Department of Health

NYSIIS and Health Commerce System (HCS)

NYSIIS is the acronym for the New York State Immunization Information System. NYSIIS is a free, web-based statewide immunization information system, also known as a registry, which maintains computerized immunization data of persons of all ages in a confidential and secure manner.

Schools are authorized to have read-only access for student look up. School users cannot enter or edit data in NYSIIS. However, school based-health centers administering immunizations are considered health care providers and have full access to the system.

Schools will need a Health Commerce System (HCS) account in order to access the New York State Immunization Information System. Many schools already have an HCS account for participation in the Online School Assessment Survey (OSAS).

Schools interested in obtaining an HCS account should send an email to osas@health.ny.gov requesting instructions regarding the HCS account process, or call the Bureau of Immunization, School Unit at (518) 474-1944.

  1. New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS) Information for School Nurses
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  2. NYSDOH Health Commerce System (HCS) Account Information for School Districts
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  3. NYSDOH Health Commerce System (HCS) Account Information for Private Schools and BOCES
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  4. NYSIIS Training Invitation letter and instructions
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  5. Health Commerce System (HCS) log in page (Online School Assessment Survey is located on the HCS)
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  6. Health Commerce System Portal Forgot Your Password Quick Reference Guide
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  7. Paperless HCS User Account
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  8. Health Commerce System (HCS) Frequently Asked Questions
    Source: New York State Department of Health

Medical Exemptions

Effective June 13, 2019, PHL § 2164 only allows for medical exemptions to school immunization requirements. New York law does not recognize non-medical exemptions. Medical exemptions are defined in PHL § 2164 as:Medical Exemption. If a physician licensed to practice medicine in New York State certifies that an immunization is detrimental to a child’s health, the requirement for that immunization is waived until such immunization is no longer detrimental to the child’s health.

  1. Immunization-Related Medical Exemptions for School-Aged Children
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  2. The New York State Department of Health Notification of Legislation Removing non-Medical Exemptions to Required Vaccinations
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  3. Medical Exemption Statement for Children 0-18 Years of Age
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  4. Frequently Asked Questions About Legislation Removing Non-Medical Exemptions from School Vaccination Requirements
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  5. Guide to Contraindications and Precautions to Commonly used vaccines
    Source: www.immunize.org

School Immunization Survey

Schools are required to submit the annual mandated immunization survey online. The submission of the immunization status of children attending school in the State of New York is mandated by Public Health Law Section 2164. The survey is housed on the New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) Health Commerce System(HCS). To access the online survey, school staff members must obtain HCS accounts.

  1. Dear Superintendent, School Administrator and Health Commerce System Coordinator Letter Regarding the Online School Immunization Survey
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  2. Immunization School Survey Instruction Booklet
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  3. Instructions for Accessing and Completing the School Immunization Survey
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  4. Immunization School Survey Worksheets
    Source: New York State Department of Health

Influenza

  1. NYS Influenza Education Announcement
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  2. Fight Flu at Home and School
    Source: New York State Department of Health
  3. Everyday Preventive Actions That Can Help Fight Germs, Like Flu
    Source: CDC
  4. The Flu: A Guide for Parents (Flu Information)
    Source: CDC
  5. The Flu: A Guide for Parents, Keep your kids safe. Get their flu vaccine every year Source: NYSDOH
  6. How to Clean and Disinfect Schools to Help Slow the Spread of Flu
    Source: CDC
  7. Keep Your Kids Safe- Get Them Vaccinated Every Fall or Winter Source: www.immunize.org
  8. Teaching Children About the Flu – Lesson Plans and Activities for Child Care and Early Childhood Programs
    Source: CDC

Human Papillomavirus (HPV)

  1. Genital HPV Infection – CDC Fact Sheet
    Source: CDC
  2. HPV Vaccine for Preteens and Teens – Fact sheet for parents
    Source: CDC
  3. Human Papillomavirus- A Parent’s Guide to Preteen and Teen HPV Vaccination
    Source: www.immunize.org
  4. Supplemental Information and Guidance for Vaccination Providers Regarding Use of 9-valent HPV Source: CDC

Glossary

  1. School Nurse Immunization Toolkit Glossary

Additional Resources

  1. Vaccine Excipient Summary
    Source: CDC
  2. Foreign Language Terms- Aids to Translating foreign Immunization Records
    Source: CDC
  3. Recommended and Minimum Ages and Intervals Between Doses of Routinely Recommended Vaccines
    Source: CDC Pink Book
  4. New York State Department of Health Immunization Policy on Minimum Intervals


A Project of County Health Officials of New York.