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North Carolina
State Vaccine Requirements
Posted Date: August 13, 2014

Quick Fact: If the bona fide religious beliefs of an adult or the parent, guardian or person in loco parentis of a child are contrary to the immunization requirements, the adult or the child shall be exempt from the requirements. Upon submission of a written statement of the bona fide religious beliefs and opposition to the immunization requirements, the person may attend the college, university, school or facility without presenting a certificate of immunization. No child shall be exempt from the requirements of immunizations for the case of a personal belief or philosophy of a parent or guardian not founded upon a religious belief.  Medical exemptions are also allowed.

Other Resources: Many vaccination and exemption information links are date specific. If the links below have expired, click on the state's department of health, or immunization program link provided below, as they are likely to provide links to updated information. The General Information link leads to the overview page provided by the state at the time of this webpage's update and may also be helpful.  Please email NVIC with broken link information.  

K-12 School Information

Higher Ed  Daycare Information

Vaccination Requirements for Healthcare Workers, Patients, Inmates & Developmentally Disabled

State of North Carolina Legislature see applicable statutes and their hyperlinks below. Visit NVIC’s Advocacy Portal for information on legislation introduced impacting vaccine exemption rights. 

State of North Carolina Legislature Electronic Notification Service

State of North Carolina Department of Health

State of North Carolina Immunization Program

State of North Carolina Immunization Registry Information

The information contained on NVIC's web pages is for educational purposes only and is not intended to be medical or legal advice. Those seeking medical or legal advice should obtain the services of a competent attorney, physician or qualified health care professional.  Although NVIC continually updates our website, state laws and rules change frequently and consumers are ultimately responsible for verifying their state's vaccination and exemption laws and requirements.

Back to Exemptions Main Page - All States


CHAPTER 130A. PUBLIC HEALTH
ARTICLE 6. COMMUNICABLE DISEASES
PART 2. IMMUNIZATION

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 130A-152. Immunization required 

(a) Every child present in this State shall be immunized against diphtheria, tetanus, whooping cough, poliomyelitis, red measles (rubeola) and rubella. In addition, every child present in this State shall be immunized against any other disease upon a determination by the Commission that the immunization is in the interest of the public health. Every parent, guardian, person in loco parentis and person or agency, whether governmental or private, with legal custody of a child shall have the responsibility to ensure that the child has received the required immunization at the age required by the Commission. If a child has not received the required immunizations by the specified age, the responsible person shall obtain the required immunization for the child as soon as possible after the lack of the required immunization is determined.

(b) Repealed by Session Laws 2002 179, s. 10, effective October 1, 2002.

(c) The Commission shall adopt and the Department shall enforce rules concerning the implementation of the immunization program. The rules shall provide for:

(1) The child's age at administration of each vaccine;
(2) The number of doses of each vaccine;
(3) Exemptions from the immunization requirements where medical practice suggests that immunization would not be in the best health interests of a specific category of children;
(4) The procedures and practices for administering the vaccine; and
(5) Redistribution of vaccines provided to local health departments.
(c1) The Commission for Public Health shall, pursuant to G.S. 130A 152 and G.S. 130A 433, adopt rules establishing reasonable fees for the administration of vaccines and rules limiting the requirements that can be placed on children, their parents, guardians, or custodians as a condition for receiving vaccines provided by the State. These rules shall become effective January 1, 1994.

(d) Only vaccine preparations which meet the standards of the United States Food and Drug Administration or its successor in licensing vaccines and are approved for use by the Commission may be used.

(e) When the Commission requires immunization against a disease not listed in paragraph (a) of this section, or requires an additional dose of a vaccine, the Commission is authorized to exempt from the new requirement children who are or who have been enrolled in school (K 12) on or before the effective date of the new requirement.
 

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 130A-155. Submission of certificate to child care facility, preschool and school authorities; record maintenance; reporting.

(a) No child shall attend a school (pre K 12), whether public, private or religious, a child care facility as defined in G.S. 110 86(3), unless a certificate of immunization indicating that the child has received the immunizations required by G.S. 130A 152 is presented to the school or facility. The parent, guardian, or responsible person must present a certificate of immunization on the child's first day of attendance to the principal of the school or operator of the facility, as defined in G.S. 110 86(7). If a certificate of immunization is not presented on the first day, the principal or operator shall present a notice of deficiency to the parent, guardian or responsible person. The parent, guardian or responsible person shall have 30 calendar days from the first day of attendance to obtain the required immunization for the child. If the administration of vaccine in a series of doses given at medically approved intervals requires a period in excess of 30 calendar days, additional days upon certification by a physician may be allowed to obtain the required immunization. Upon termination of 30 calendar days or the extended period, the principal or operator shall not permit the child to attend the school or facility unless the required immunization has been obtained.

(b) The school or child care facility shall maintain on file immunization records for all children attending the school or facility which contain the information required for a certificate of immunization as specified in G.S. 130A 154. These certificates shall be open to inspection by the Department and the local health department during normal business hours. When a child transfers to another school or facility, the school or facility which the child previously attended shall, upon request, send a copy of the child's immunization record at no charge to the school or facility to which the child has transferred.

(c) The school shall file an annual immunization report with the Department by November 1. The child care facility shall file an immunization report annually with the Department. The report shall be filed on forms prepared by the Department and shall state the number of children attending the school or facility, the number of children who had not obtained the required immunization within 30 days of their first attendance, the number of children who received a medical exemption and the number of children who received a religious exemption.

(d) Any adult who attends school (pre K 12), whether public, private or religious, shall obtain the immunizations required in G.S. 130A 152 and shall present to the school a certificate in accordance with this section. The physician or local health department administering a required vaccine to the adult shall give a certificate of immunization to the person. The certificate shall state the person's name, address, date of birth and sex; the number of doses of the vaccine given; the date the doses were given; the name and addresses of the physician or local health department administering the required immunization; and other relevant information required by the Commission.
 

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 130A-155.1. Submission of certificate to college or universities. 

(a) Except as otherwise provided in this section, no person shall attend a college or university, whether public, private, or religious, unless a certificate of immunization or a record of immunization from a high school located in North Carolina indicating that the person has received immunizations required by G.S. 130A 152 is presented to the college or university. The person shall present a certificate or record of immunization on or before the date the person first registers for a quarter or semester during which the student will reside on the campus or first registers for more than four traditional day credit hours to the registrar of the college or university. If a certificate or record of immunization is not in the possession of the college or university on the date of first registration, the college or university shall present a notice of deficiency to the student. The student shall have 30 calendar days from the date of the student's first registration to obtain the required immunization. If immunization requires a series of doses and the period necessary to give the vaccine at standard intervals extends beyond the date of the first registration, the student shall be allowed to attend the college or university upon written certification by a physician that the standard series is in progress. The physician shall state the time period needed to complete the series. Upon termination of this time period, the college or university shall not permit the student to continue in attendance unless the required immunization has been obtained.

(b) The college or university shall maintain on file immunization records for all students attending the school which contain the information required for a certificate of immunization as specified in G.S. 130A 154. These certificates shall be open to inspection by the Department and the local health department during normal business hours. When a student transfers to another college or university, the college or university which the student previously attended shall, upon request, send a copy of the student's immunization record at no charge to the college or university to which the student has transferred.

(c) Within 60 calendar days after the commencement of a new school year, the college or university shall file an immunization report with the Department. The report shall be filed on forms prepared by the Department and shall state the number of students attending the school or facility, the number of students who had not obtained the required immunization within 30 days of their first attendance, the number of students who received a medical exemption and the number of students who received a religious exemption.

(d) Repealed by Session Laws 1999 110, s. 5.

(e) The provisions of this section shall not apply to:
(1) Educational institutions established under Chapter 115D of the General Statutes.
(2) Students residing off campus and registering for any combination of:
a. Off campus courses.
b. Evening courses.
c. Weekend courses.
d. No more than four traditional day credit hours in on campus courses. 


N.C. Gen. Stat. 
§ 130A-156. Medical exemption

The Commission for Public Health shall adopt by rule medical contraindications to immunizations required by G.S. 130A 152. If a physician licensed to practice medicine in this State certifies that a required immunization is or may be detrimental to a person's health due to the presence of one of the contraindications adopted by the Commission, the person is not required to receive the specified immunization as long as the contraindication persists. The State Health Director may, upon request by a physician licensed to practice medicine in this State, grant a medical exemption to a required immunization for a contraindication not on the list adopted by the Commission.

N.C. Gen. Stat. § 130A-157. Religious exemption 

If the bona fide religious beliefs of an adult or the parent, guardian or person in loco parentis of a child are contrary to the immunization requirements contained in this Chapter, the adult or the child shall be exempt from the requirements. Upon submission of a written statement of the bona fide religious beliefs and opposition to the immunization requirements, the person may attend the college, university, school or facility without presenting a certificate of immunization.
 

TITLE 10A. HEALTH AND HUMAN SERVICES
CHAPTER 41. EPIDEMIOLOGY HEALTH
SUBCHAPTER 41A. COMMUNICABLE DISEASE CONTROL
Section .0400 - IMMUNIZATION

10A NCAC 41A.0401. DOSAGE AND AGE REQUIREMENTS FOR IMMUNIZATION

(a) Every individual in North Carolina required to be immunized pursuant to G.S. 130A-152 through 130A-157 shall be immunized against the following diseases by receiving the specified minimum doses of vaccines by the specified ages:

(1) Diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough vaccine-five doses: three doses by age seven months and two booster doses, one by age 19 months and the second on or after the fourth birthday and before enrolling in school for the first time. However:

(A) Individuals who receive the first booster dose of diphtheria, tetanus, and whooping cough vaccine on or after the fourth birthday are not required to have a second booster dose;
(B) Individuals attending colleges and universities are required to have three doses of tetanus/diphtheria toxoid, one of which must have been within the last 10 years. Those individuals enrolling in college or university for the first time on or after July 1, 2008 must have had three doses of tetanus/diphtheria toxoid and a booster dose of tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis vaccine if a tetanus/diphtheria toxoid or tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis vaccine has not been administered within the past 10 years. A dose of tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis vaccine is not required for any student over the age of 64 years;
(C) A booster dose of tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis vaccine is required for individuals attending public school who are entering the sixth grade on or after August 1, 2008, if five years or more have passed since the last dose of tetanus/diphtheria toxoid. A booster dose of tetanus/diphtheria/pertussis vaccine is required for individuals not attending public schools who are 12 years of age on or after August 1, 2008, if five years or more have passed since the last dose of tetanus/diphtheria toxoid. However, pertussis (whooping cough) vaccine is not required for individuals between 7 years of age through the fifth grade for those attending public schools and 7 through 12 years of age for those not attending public schools.

(2) Poliomyelitis vaccine--four doses: two doses of trivalent type by age five months; a third dose trivalent type before age 19 months, and a booster dose of trivalent type before enrolling in school for the first time. However:

(A) An individual attending school who has attained his or her 18th birthday is not required to receive polio vaccine;
(B) Individuals who receive the third dose of poliomyelitis vaccine on or after the fourth birthday are not required to receive a fourth dose;
(C) The requirements for booster doses of poliomyelitis vaccine do not apply to individuals who enrolled for the first time in the first grade before July 1, 1987.

(3) Measles (rubeola) vaccine--two doses of live, attenuated vaccine administered at least 28 days apart: one dose on or after age 12 months and before age 16 months and a second dose before enrolling in school for the first time. However:

(A) An individual who has been documented by serological testing to have a protective antibody titer against measles is not required to receive measles vaccine;
(B) An individual who has been diagnosed prior to January 1, 1994, by a physician licensed to practice medicine as having measles (rubeola) disease is not required to receive measles vaccine;
(C) An individual born prior to 1957 is not required to receive measles vaccine;
(D) The requirement for a second dose of measles vaccine does not apply to individuals who enroll in school or in college or university for the first time before July 1, 1994.

(4) Rubella vaccine--one dose of live, attenuated vaccine on or after age 12 months and before age 16 months. However:

(A) An individual who has been documented by serologic testing to have a protective antibody titer against rubella is not required to receive rubella vaccine;
(B) An individual who has attained his or her fiftieth birthday is not required to receive rubella vaccine except in outbreak situations;
(C) An individual who entered a college or university after his or her thirtieth birthday and before February 1, 1989 is not required to meet the requirement for rubella vaccine except in outbreak situations.

(5) Mumps vaccine--one dose of live, attenuated vaccine administered on or after age 12 months and before age 16 months and a second dose before enrolling in school, college or university for the first time. However:

(A) An individual born prior to 1957 is not required to receive mumps vaccine;
(B) The requirements for mumps vaccine do not apply to individuals who enrolled for the first time in the first grade before July 1, 1987 or in college or university before July 1, 1994;
(C) An individual who has been documented by serological testing to have a protective antibody titer against mumps is not required to receive mumps vaccine;
(D) An individual entering school, college or university prior to July 1, 2008 is not required to receive a second dose of mumps vaccine.

(6) Haemophilus influenzae, b, conjugate vaccine--three doses of HbOC or PRP-T or two doses of PRP-OMP before age seven months and a booster dose of any type on or after age 12 months and by age 16 months. However:

(A) Individuals born before October 1, 1988 are not required to be vaccinated against Haemophilus influenzae, b;
(B) Individuals who receive the first dose of Haemophilus influenzae, b, vaccine on or after 12 months of age and before 15 months of age are required to have only two doses of HbOC, PRP-T or PRP-OMP;
(C) Individuals who receive the first dose of Haemophilus influenzae, b, vaccine on or after 15 months of age are required to have only one dose of any of the Haemophilus influenzae conjugate vaccines, including PRP-D;
(D) No individual who has passed their fifth birthday is required to be vaccinated against Haemophilus influenzae, b.

(7) Hepatitis B vaccine--three doses: one dose by age three months, a second dose before age five months and a third dose by age 19 months. However:

(A) The last dose of the hepatitis B vaccine series shall not be administered prior to 24 weeks of age;
(B) Individuals born before July 1, 1994 are not required to be vaccinated against hepatitis B.

(8) Varicella vaccine--1 dose administered on or after age 12 months and before age 19 months. However:

(A) An individual with a laboratory test indicating immunity or with a history of varicella disease, documented by a health care provider, parent, guardian or person in loco parentis is not required to receive varicella vaccine. Serologic proof of immunity or documentation of previous illness must be presented whenever a certificate of immunization is required by North Carolina General Statute. The documentation shall include the name of the individual with a history of varicella disease and the approximate date or age of infection. Previous illness shall be documented by:

(i) a written statement from a health care provider documented on or attached to the lifetime immunization card or certificate of immunization; or
(ii) a written statement from the individual's parent, guardian or person in loco parentis attached to the lifetime immunization card or certificate of immunization.

(B) An individual born prior to April 1, 2001 is not required to receive varicella vaccine.

(b) The healthcare provider shall administer immunizations in accordance with this Rule. However, if a healthcare provider administers vaccine up to and including the fourth day prior to the required minimum age, the individual dose is not required to be repeated. Doses administered more than 4 days prior to the requirements are considered invalid doses and shall be repeated.

(c) The State Health Director may suspend temporarily any portion of the requirements of this Rule due to emergency conditions, such as the unavailability of vaccine. The Department shall give notice in writing to all local health departments and other providers currently receiving vaccine from the Department when the suspension takes effect and when the suspension is lifted. When any vaccine series is disrupted by such a suspension, the next dose shall be administered within 90 days of the lifting of the suspension and the series resumed in accordance with intervals determined by the most recent recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices.

10A NCAC 41A.0403 NON-RELIGIOUS PERSONAL BELIEF NO EXEMPTION

Except as provided in G.S. 130A-156 and G.S. 130A-157, and 10A NCAC 41A .0404 and .0405, no child shall be exempt from the requirements of 10A NCAC 41 .0401; there is no exception to these requirements for the case of a
personal belief or philosophy of a parent or guardian not founded upon a religious belief.

10A NCAC 41A.0404 MEDICAL EXEMPTIONS FROM IMMUNIZATION

(a) Certification of a medical exemption by a physician pursuant to G.S. 130A-156 shall be in writing and shall state the basis of the exemption, the specific vaccine or vaccines the individual should not receive, and the length of time the exemption will apply for the individual.

(b) Medical contraindications for which medical exemptions may be certified by a physician for immunizations are included in the most recent General Recommendations of the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, Public Health Services, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, published in the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention publication, the Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, which is adopted by reference including subsequent amendments and additions. A copy is available for inspection in the Immunization Section at 1330 St. Mary's Street, Raleigh, North Carolina. Internet access is available by searching www.cdc.gov/nip.

 




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