By NewsDesk  @bactiman63

The Florida Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics recognizes routine immunizations as  a key component of pediatric healthcare and a critical pillar of public health. The Chapter supports SB 1936 filed by Senator Lauren Book which would remove non-medical exemptions for vaccines statewide and help ensure that Florida’s children are protected from serious vaccine preventable diseases through the COVID-19 pandemic and beyond. 

Image/James Gathany-CDC

“Vaccines are the most effective and safest way of preventing communicable diseases and save between two and three million  children’s lives each year,” says Dr. Lisa Gwynn, President of the Florida Chapter of American Academy of Pediatrics. “The COVID-19 pandemic has shown us firsthand that we cannot let our guard down and must continue to make vaccinations a number one public  health priority.” 

During the COVID-19 pandemic, the State of Florida has seen a dramatic decline in childhood immunizations, leaving Florida’s  children and most vulnerable populations at risk for vaccine preventable diseases. The Centers of Disease Control and Prevention  (CDC) and the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) recommend children continue to receive routine vaccinations during the  COVID-19 pandemic. 

Senator Book’s bill would not affect necessary medical exemptions for children who are unable to be vaccinated due to allergies or  reactions to specific vaccines or those whose immune systems are compromised by medication or illness. In these cases, a physician  would still be able to grant a medical exemption.

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Parents should remember that proper steps have been taken to keep them and their family safe during their visit to their child’s pediatrician. Families without vaccine insurance coverage may be eligible for vaccines at reduced or no cost through the Vaccines for  Children (VFC) program. To learn about the Florida VFC program, visit and to find a pediatrician, visit 

“Immunizations aren’t just for protecting ourselves, they help protect the people around us who may not be able to receive vaccines  like newborns, cancer patients receiving chemotherapy, patients with compromised immune systems, and the elderly,” said Dr.  Gwynn. “It’s important for all of us who are healthy – especially our children – to do our part in reducing the spread of disease by  getting vaccinated to protect our community and future generations.”

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