April 20, 2015

New Report: Nonmedical Exemptions from Childhood Vaccinations

OLR Report 2015-R-0088 provides an overview of laws on nonmedical exemptions to childhood immunization requirements.

According to the National Conference on State Legislatures, while all states require children, all states’ school immunization laws grant exemptions for medical reasons. All states, except Mississippi and West Virginia, allow religious exemptions. Twenty states allow philosophical exemptions, including two New England states (Maine and Vermont). One of those 20 states (Missouri) allows philosophical exemptions for children in day care but not in K-12 school.

Connecticut allows nonmedical exemptions for religious reasons. Specifically, Connecticut law allows parents or guardians to opt out of vaccinating their children if they present a statement that immunization “would be contrary to the religious beliefs of such child” (CGS § 10-204a). The Department of Public Health has prepared a standard form for parents or guardians seeking an exemption.

Click here to read the full report.