A large Dutch childcare group has gone public in saying that it will ban children who have not be vaccinated against mumps, measles and German measles from July 1, broadcaster NOS said.
The Berend Botje daycare group, which looks after over 3,000 children in Noord-Holland province, has told parents that children who have not been inoculated will be sent home after that date. The aim is to protect children of pre-inoculation age.
There have been four cases of measles at a daycare centre in The Hague in recent weeks. Several are under 14 months old, the age at which children are vaccinated against the three diseases.
So far around 100 daycare groups in the Netherlands have said that they will not accept children who have not been inoculated, but Berend Botje is thought to be the first one which has said it will ban children who already use its facilities.
It is currently illegal to discriminate against non-vaccinated children under discrimination legislation but legislation to make a ban possible is currently going through parliament.
Berend Botje looks after children in a variety of age groups at 50 different locations across the province. So far around 10 parents have asked for further information about the ban, which will come into effect on July 1, the organisation told NOS.
At the moment 90.2% of Dutch children are vaccinated against potentially serious illnesses such as measles, polio and whooping cough. This is below the level of 95% the World Health Organisation considers safe.
The last measles epidemic in the Netherlands hit the Dutch Bible belt in 2013. In total, 2,600 people were diagnosed with measles and the outbreak was concentrated in families with young children who had not been vaccinated for religious reasons. One girl, who had not been vaccinated, died.
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