Saturday 24 August, 2019

Germany introducing mandatory measles vaccination for kids

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a joint news conference with Moldova's Prime Minister Maia Sandu as part of a meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, July 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a joint news conference with Moldova's Prime Minister Maia Sandu as part of a meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, Tuesday, July 16, 2019. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

The German government is proposing a measure to make measles vaccinations mandatory for children and employees of kindergartens and schools.

Chancellor Angela Merkel's Cabinet approved the plan Wednesday, noting the number of measles infections has risen significantly in recent years. Lawmakers in parliament, where Merkel's governing coalition holds a majority, are expected to approve the law.

In the phased-in program beginning in March, parents of school-aged children, starting at kindergarten, will have to provide proof of vaccination.

Non-compliance means children will be refused admittance to kindergarten and their parents possibly fined. Parents of older students will be fined up to 2,500 euros ($2,803).

The German news agency dpa reports that while 543 cases of measles were registered in Germany last year, there have been more than 400 cases this year already.

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