There are ways to stay healthy during the coronavirus (COVID-19) pandemic, including staying home when you are sick, avoiding mass gatherings, wearing a face mask when out in public, and washing your hands frequently (more at coronavirus.dc.gov). Being healthy also means staying on track with your child’s routine wellness checkups and vaccines. To ensure a worry-free visit, the District’s health centers and hospitals are following necessary guidelines and have taken every step to keep your child and family safe while receiving care.
To protect the health and wellness of all students, District of Columbia law requires all students in the District to provide their schools with up-to-date immunization documentation or proof of medical or religious exemption to attend school in person (DC Official Code § 38–501 et seq.). Within the first 20 days of school, beginning Monday April 19, 2021, all students must be up to date on all required immunizations (DC Official Code § 38–505). If a student has not received their immunizations and 20 school days have passed, they will not be allowed to return for in-person instruction or activities until they have received all required immunizations and submitted paperwork, or an approved medical or religious exemption, to the school. Students may continue to attend school through distance learning while securing their immunizations, but you should make plans now to ensure your student is up-to-date before in-person instruction resumes.
DC Health immunization requirements(1) are based on a student’s age. If you are not sure if your student has received all of their immunizations, contact your primary health provider or make an appointment for your student to receive their annual wellness visit. During the wellness visit, ensure the health provider completes the Universal Health Certificate(2) or provides you with appropriate proof of immunization or medical exemption. You will need to give this immunization documentation to the school.
It is critical that students are fully immunized before returning to school to prevent the spread of more infectious diseases. Immunizations are the best defense against some of the most common and sometimes deadly infectious diseases. To learn more about childhood vaccines, visit cdc.gov/vaccines/parents or dchealth.dc.gov/immunizations.
To find a health provider or immunization location near you, please refer to the list provided by DC Health. If you do not have health insurance or need a healthcare provider, please refer to DC Health (3) Link(4) or contact the Citywide Call Center by dialing 3-1-1. If you have other questions or would like more information regarding this letter, please email The Lafayette Health Team at .
The Lafayette Health Team
1.DC Health, Immunization Requirements: dchealth.dc.gov/node/112212
2.DC Health, DC Universal Health Certificate: dchealth.dc.gov/service/school-health-services-program
3.DC Health, List of Health Providers and Pediatric Immunization Locations: dchealth.dc.gov/service/school-health-services-program