New immunization requirements for Texas Children’s employees

June 24, 2019

Texas Children’s employees share a responsibility to protect our patients, their families and each other from vaccine-preventable diseases like rubeola (measles), pertussis (whooping cough) and varicella (chickenpox). With the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reporting this year the highest number of confirmed individual measles cases since the disease was declared eliminated in 2000, our commitment to preventing the transmission of vaccine-preventable diseases is especially important.

In support of that effort and our mission to create healthier futures for children and women, Texas Children’s is introducing new immunization requirements for all employees and all new hires, regardless of their patient care duties. These requirements are detailed in the Appropriate Screening and Vaccination Protocol Policy (#305) and Procedure (#3357), and align with recommendations from the CDC and the Texas Department of State Health Services.

For an introduction to the new policy and helpful information about the safety, effectiveness and necessity of vaccines, please watch this video message from our Physician-in-Chief Dr. Mark W. Kline. To view the video message, click here.

Required Immunization Details

Under the new policy, all Texas Children’s employees must take one of the following actions prior to August 30, 2019:

  • Be immunized against vaccine-preventable diseases including measles, mumps and rubella; chickenpox; and tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis.
  • Provide written documentation of vaccinations, written documentation of disease history by physician, or laboratory evidence of immunity.
  • If an employee has a medical contraindication that prohibits him or her from getting vaccinated or a religious objection, they must complete the immunization exemption process, detailed within the Immunization Requirement Guide. Immunization exemption requests will be reviewed by Employee Health and may be subject to individual or committee review. Employees whose exemption requests are approved may be subject to reassignment to an alternative area if available, based on the level of risk they present to patients.

How will this affect employees who are non-immune?

Employees who are considered non-immune to measles, mumps and rubella, chickenpox and/or tetanus, diphtheria and pertussis received an e-mail from Employee Health on June 24 explaining the new immunization requirements and requesting compliance by August 30, 2019.

For more information on the new immunization requirement, where to receive vaccine(s) at no cost, how to submit immunity documentation, and information on the immunization exemption process, please review the Immunization Requirement Guide. If you have any questions, please call Employee Health at 832-824-2150, option 2.

As a global leader in pediatric and women’s health care, our Texas Children’s patients and families rely on us to take every possible action to prevent the spread of vaccine-preventable diseases. Thank you for helping to keep yourself and our community safe and protected by complying with these new immunization requirements.