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Vaccine Against Pertussis Required for Seventh-Graders this Fall

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Vaccine Against Pertussis Required for Seventh-Graders this Fall
Posted on 04/13/2017
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The Portland Public Schools is reminding parents that, effective for the 2017-2018 school year, all students entering seventh (7th) grade will need to receive one dose of Tdap (tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis) vaccine before attendance is allowed. The Maine Department of Health and Human Services and Department of Education revised the Maine School Immunization Requirements rule on December 20, 2016. The changes further align Maine’s immunization rules with current national recommendations to better protect the health of all Maine people.

You can find a link to the rule (Chapter 126 / 261) here:


Pertussis (whooping cough) is a very contagious respiratory disease that can be severe and last for months. The immunity received from either early childhood immunization or pertussis disease wears off over time, leaving older students and adults susceptible to pertussis. Immunization with Tdap can protect students, schools and communities against whooping cough.

If you have any questions, or need assistance finding a healthcare provider for your child, please contact your child’s school nurse or Tina Veilleux, R.N., school nurse coordinator for the Portland Public Schools, at 874-8175.

For further questions, please contact the Maine Immunization Program at (207) 287-3746 or (800) 867-4775 or by email at ImmunizeME.DHHS@maine.gov

The Portland school district saw an increase in cases of pertussis this winter. Click HERE for a fact sheet about pertussis. Vaccinating your child is the best way to protect your child from the disease.