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Exemptions and Immunity

Medical and Nonmedical Exemptions and Immunity Documentation

By far, parents in Oregon vaccinate their children. Parents who cannot or do not want their children to be vaccinated can claim an exemption for one or all school immunizations. There two types of exemptions; medical and nonmedical. In addition, some people may show immunity because of having had a disease or with a blood test. See below for explanations, directions and required forms for completing the exemption process.

Medical Exemptions

Some people cannot get immunized because of a medical reason. Physicians can sign medical exemptions for children with valid contraindications to an immunization as determined by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.

There are two kinds of medical exemptions, temporary and permanent. Temporary medical exemptions are given an expiration date after which the child will need to receive the vaccine, or the physician will need to write a request for an extension for re-review by the local health department. With a permanent medical exemption, the child will never be required to receive the vaccine.

To apply for a medical exemption for a child, the parent must submit a letter signed by a licensed physician stating:

  • Child’s name
  • Birth date
  • Medical condition that contraindicates vaccine
  • List of vaccines contraindicated
  • Approximate time until the condition resolves, if applicable
  • Physician’s signature
  • Physician’s contact information including the phone number

Nonmedical Exemptions

Some people choose not to vaccinate for personal, religious, or philosophical reasons and they can claim a nonmedical exemption to some or all immunizations. To claim a nonmedical exemption for children in child care, preschool, K-12, or college, visit

Immunity Documentation

If a person can show immunity to certain diseases they do not need to provide vaccination dates. Immunity documentation is acceptable for history of disease or positive titer (blood test) for hepatitis B, hepatitis A, Hib, MMR or varicella. Immunity documentation is not acceptable for diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis or polio.

To submit immunity documentation for a child, the parent must have a letter or lab test from a licensed physician stating:

  • Child’s name
  • Birth date
  • Diagnosis or lab report

Parents can sign for history of disease for varicella.

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