With Pfizer fully approved, will Indiana schools mandate coronavirus vaccinations?

INDIANAPOLIS (WISH) – Indiana state law requires all new students K-12 and those attending Indiana public universities be immunized against measles, mumps, rubella, meningitis and diphtheria in order to enroll. 

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Now that the Pfizer vaccine is no longer under emergency use authorization, will children who currently qualify for the shot be required to get one? News 8 turned to Dr. Christopher Doehring, vice president of medical affairs at Franciscan Health. Doehring explained if people should expect a mandate and who has the final say. 

“Typically, those mandates are established by state legislators in cooperation with the health department,” he said. “And at this point it seems unlikely that we would be seeing that type of mandate at least here in Indiana and other parts of the country. But certainly it is in the realm of possibility.”

Students sit in an Algebra class at Barbara Coleman Senior High School on the first day of school, Monday, Aug. 23, 2021, in Miami Lakes, Fla. Miami-Dade County public schools require students to wear a mask to prevent the spread of COVID-19. (AP Photo/Marta Lavandier)

Doehring says it’s hard to imagine a scenario where a mandate will be enforced in the immediate future.

A representative with the the Indiana State Department of Health provided a statement that said,” “At this time, there is no plan to mandate COVID-19 vaccines in schools. We continue to strongly recommend that anyone who is eligible get vaccinated.”

Doehring echoes this statement and encourages those eligible to get the vaccine. He also hopes this will help those who’ve been hesitant to get vaccinated. 


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