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Italy extends time for vaccine proof for young school kids

September 22, 2018

FILE - In this Friday, Feb. 23, 2018 file photo, doctor Roberto Ieraci vaccinates a child in Rome. Italian parents have more time before having to produce proof their children kids received 10 mandatory vaccinations. Earlier in the week, the Senate passed legislation extending till March a requirement that families provide vaccination documentation so their children can attend nursery school or kindergarten. The certification requirement was supposed to have kicked in before the September start of school. But the populist government wanted to extend the deadline. (AP Photo/Alessandra Tarantino, File)

ROME (AP) — Italian parents have more time before having to produce proof to schools that their children have received 10 mandatory vaccinations.

The Italian Senate has extended until March a requirement that families provide vaccination documentation so their children can attend nursery school or kindergarten.

The certification requirement was supposed to have kicked in before the school year started in September. But legislation approved Thursday and backed by Italy’s populist government extended that deadline.

Italy’s health minister, Dr. Giulia Grillo, from the anti-establishment 5-Star Movement, says she’ll have her child vaccinated. But Grillo insists that improved vaccination compliance be achieved by education, not obligation.

Italy reported nearly 5,000 cases of measles in 2017, a nearly six-fold increase that has been blamed on the country’s highly politicized debate over vaccines.

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