UPDATE: Chicken Pox Outbreak At Milford School

UPDATE: Kosciusko  County will be holding a Varicella vaccine clinic at Milford School from 1 p.m. to 3 p.m. today. Students and staff who have not received either the initial vaccine or completed two doses of the Chicken Pox vaccine or have accepted documentation of immunity will be excluded from school for 21 days starting today.

In order to assist Kosciusko with their response the health department will be taking calls regarding school exclusion. The following Indiana State Department of Health staff should be contacted for questions or concerns regarding the school exclusion: Dana Greenwood, RN-317-233-7560, Sue Henry, RN  317-234-2804 or Shawn Richards at 317-233-7740.

Early Wednesday evening, Milford School officials confirmed five cases of the chicken pox. The announcement also brought an order from the ISDH that any student without the completed vaccination will be removed from school for a period of 21 days.

Students with religious objections and/or no permission to receive the Varicella immunization will not be allowed to be in school for 21 days. According to Reed, the last exposure may have been last week so the actual exclusion dates – now noted to be today through Feb. 21 – may change when more information is received.

Milford School Principal Cindy Kaiser said in an email Wednesday that Kosciusko Communicable Disease RN Teresa Reed has been working with the school over the last couple of weeks keeping an eye on the confirmed cases. Once the fifth case was confirmed, the county health department offered to provide free immunizations for students who have not yet had the second Varicella (chicken pox) immunization. Those immunizations will be offered at the school tomorrow (Jan. 31). Students must have signed permission slips.

While students are not required to receive the immunization, the Indiana State Department of Health has ruled that those who cannot verify their second Varicella immunization will be excluded from school for 21 consecutive days. Kaiser said, “We received this information at 4 p.m. (Wednesday).”

In a letter sent to Milford School parents late today, Kaiser wrote, “We will be offering the immunization free of charge at school tomorrow, Jan. 31. A signed Health Department permission slip that was sent home today must be signed and returned to school tomorrow. Any questions, please contact the school tomorrow.”

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