The CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) met on October 19-20. After some confusion on what was approved on Wednesday, the group went forward to unanimously approve adding the COVID vaccine series to the recommended childhood schedule of vaccines. Click here to read the full story from our partners at Children's Health Defense.
In Kentucky, the vaccines "required" to attend daycare and K-12 school are set by administrative regulations. You can see those here. Currently, the Kentucky requirements DO NOT mirror the CDC childhood schedule. Kentucky does not require vaccines for rotavirus, HPV, and dengue fever, yet those vaccines are on the CDC childhood schedule. So, there is already precedent for NOT following the full CDC recommendations in Kentucky. We have no indication at this time whether the administration, led by Governor Andy Beshear, will make an attempt to add the COVID vaccine to the Kentucky school/daycare requirements.
For any changes to be made to the Kentucky daycare and school vaccine requirements, the Cabinet for Health and Family Services would put forward a proposed change to the existing regulations. This process includes a 90 day public comment period, and the option for an in-person public comment session. CHFS would summarize all comments received and make revisions (or not) to their proposed changes.
Next, the proposal would be heard by a committee of legislators called the Administrative Regulations Review Subcommittee. This committee can vote to find the regulations deficient. Next, the regulations are reviewed by the "committee of jurisdiction," which in this case would be Health and Welfare/Family Services. This committee can also find the regulations deficient. However, it is possible that CHFS and the administration can still implement the regulations if they are found deficient.
However, in recent years, the legislature has begun a tradition of passing legislation to nullify any regulations found deficient in the previous interim period.
Even if the COVID vaccine is added to the requirements to attend daycare or K-12 school in Kentucky, medical and religious exemptions would still apply. The current form used for religious exemptions would be updated to include any vaccines added to the requirements. You can read all about religious and medical exemptions for daycare and K-12 school in Kentucky here.
A note about emergency regulations: A state agency can also implement an emergency regulation. In this case, the regulation takes immediate effect before going through the process outlined above. The process still takes place, but after the regulation is implemented. It is unlikely that a daycare or school vaccine requirement would be altered using an emergency regulation. But, even if an emergency regulation is utilized, the religious and medical exemptions would still be applicable.
If there is an attempt to add the COVID vaccine to the Kentucky school or daycare requirements, Kentucky Medical Freedom Coalition will let you know immediately, and we will work together to fight against this change!
Help us by becoming a supporting member.
Learn about Administrative Regulations here.