Under the Immunization of School Pupils' Act, students are now required to be vaccinated against whooping cough, the chickenpox and meningococcal disease before attending school in September.
That's in addition to the existing requirements of immunization against tetanus, diphtheria, polio, measles, mumps and rubella.
Jody Kroeplin, a Public Health Nurse with the Grey-Bruce Health Unit, says the chickenpox vaccine -- also known as Varicella -- is only mandatory for children born on January 1st, 2010 of later.
Although, Kroeplin tells us the vaccine is recommended for kids born prior to 2010 too.
In Ontario, both meningococcal and whooping cough -- or Pertussis -- have been combined with routine childhood vaccinations.
There are several different strains of meningococcal disease that can lead to brain, spinal, lung and blood infections.
Kroeplin says Grade 7 students have actually been receiving the vaccine since 2009.
Pertussis is contagious and commonly affects infants and young children, resulting in violent, uncontrollable coughing, difficulty breathing and can cause complications.
Kroeplin encourages parents and caregivers to review their child's immunization record to ensure they're fully vaccinated before school resumes in September.
If students are not up-to-date, they could be suspended from school by order of the Grey-Bruce Medical Officer of Health, Dr. Hazel Lynn.
Vaccines work by triggering a natural response in your body to produce antibodies, which ultimately fight off disease.
For more information, contact the Grey-Bruce Health Unit at (519) 376-9420.