COLORADO, USA — Before the COVID-19 vaccine was the only immunization conversation, Colorado was focused on the shots that kids get early on, like the ones that protect against Polio and Measles.
According to the National Conference of State Legislatures, all but six states in the nation have a religious exemption for immunizations. Colorado is one of 15 states that allows for both religious and personal belief exemptions.
CDC Data from 2017 and 2018 shows Colorado has some of the lowest vaccination rates in the country.
A Colorado law that goes into effect this school year aims to change that.
The School Entry Immunization Bill adds red tape for parents to be able to claim those exemptions.
Parents now have to complete CDPHE's Online Immunization Education Module or get a doctor's signature. They are also required to fill out a state exemption form for both medical and non-medical exemptions.
The bill sponsors pointed to 2017 when 9,000 Colorado children went to the hospital for vaccine preventable diseases as a reason for this change.
They also said Colorado has one of thee highest rates for non-medical exemptions compared to the rest of the country.
The state department of health says they are analyzing last year's exemption rates and they will be published soon.
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