A Fenelon Falls mother is speaking out after getting a notice in the mail from the Haliburton Kawartha Pineridge District Health Unit.
She says her daughter could be suspended from school on March 4, if her immunizations are not up to date. But the problem is, this mother insists they are current.
“[It’s] stating that my one child, her vaccine that was given when she was a baby is not valid because it was given three days before her first birthday,” said Byrne.
The vaccine is the Meningococcal C vaccine that helps prevent meningitis.
“Why now? I don’t know if it’s going to affect my child by having two vaccines of this strand — no one can tell me if it’s going to hurt her,” said Byrne.
Global News reached out to the health unit and they say they must enforce Ontario’s Immunization of School Pupils Act. It requires students to be fully immunized against preventable diseases.
In 2014, three preventable diseases were added to the Act, one of which is meningococcal C.
“The schedule indicates that one dose is to be administered no earlier than one year of age, and that’s basically based on science so it’s shown that kids that receive it one year of age or if they are older, it provides the best immunity,” said Marianne Rock, the manager of Communicable Disease Prevention and Control Department with the Health Unit.
But Byrne says she’s not the only parent who is affected. About 5,400 area students also received the letter in the mail.
“One of the options is to get the vaccination again, and there is no research to show that it does any harm. The other option is if they chose not to have that child receive that vaccination again — and so with that, that’s called a non-medical exemption or an exemption process,” said Rock.
But Byrne says she is frustrated because her child already has the vaccine.
“How can someone’s body tell them, ‘OK, you are a year old now — the body doesn’t know how old it is down to the day. I could see if it was two months out or even a month out, but three days?” said Byrne.
Byrne says she has yet to speak to her family doctor.