Germany Introducing Mandatory Measles Vaccination for Kids

BERLIN (AP) — The German government is proposing a measure to make measles vaccinations mandatory for children and employees of kindergartens and schools.

German Chancellor Angela Merkel attends a joint news conference with Moldova’s Prime Minister Maia Sandu as part of a meeting at the Chancellery in Berlin, Germany, on Tuesday. (AP Photo/Michael Sohn)

Chancellor Angela Merkel’s Cabinet approved the plan Wednesday, noting the number of measles infections has risen significantly in recent years. Lawmakers in parliament, where Merkel’s governing coalition holds a majority, are expected to approve the law.

In the phased-in program beginning in March, parents of school-aged children, starting at kindergarten, will have to provide proof of vaccination.

Non-compliance means children will be refused admittance to kindergarten and their parents possibly fined. Parents of older students will be fined up to $2,803.

The German news agency dpa reports that while 543 cases of measles were registered in Germany last year, there have been more than 400 cases this year already.

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