NJ FOCUSES ON FLU SHOTS FOR KIDS...AND MANDATORY HIV TEST IN PREGNANCY

Pharmacy Times, Volume 0, 0

NJ FOCUSES ON FLU SHOTS FOR KIDS...

The New Jersey PublicHealth Council votedrecently to mandate annualflu vaccinations for childrenwho attend preschoolor day care. If the recommendationis approved asexpected by the statehealth commissioner, itwould make New Jerseythe first state in the countryto make such immunizationscompulsory.

The advisory panel is alsorecommending requiring 3 other vaccines for schoolchildren—a pneumonia immunization for preschoolersand 2 for those attending middle school: a vaccine tofight a dangerous meningitis strain and a tetanus-pertussis-diphtheria booster.

Concerned parents said they will keep urging supportfor a bill that would give parents a right to a philosophicalobjection to vaccine mandates, as many otherstates have. If approved, the additional immunizationswould become mandatory on September 1, 2008.

...AND MANDATORY HIV TEST IN PREGNANCY

On another front, a bill requiring all pregnantwomen in New Jersey to be tested for HIV as part oftheir prenatal care was signed into law in December.

The legislation mandates that women be testedearly in their pregnancies and again in their thirdtrimesters unless they refuse. If a woman refuses, anHIV test will be performed on the newborn unless themother objects for religious reasons.