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LA Elementary Schools That Don't Comply With Vaccination Laws May Face Lawsuits

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) - City prosecutors and health officials are threatening legal action against Los Angeles elementary schools that fail to report how many of their students have been vaccinated.

City Attorney Mike Feuer along with officials from the Los Angeles County Department of Public Health announced Thursday they're putting "non-conforming schools with kindergartens on notice" that they must report the number of students vaccinated, or could potentially face civil lawsuits by the City Attorney's Office.

Each fall, every kindergarten in the state is required to file an Annual Immunization Assessment report to the California Department of Public Health. These reports are vital in the county's effort to conduct timely communicable disease surveillance, including measles, and to conduct timely intervention activities, Feuer said.

Officials say they have sent letters that remind school administrators of their responsibilities under state law to 17 schools that have not submitted vaccination reports in the past two two school years or for school's that did not submit reports for the 2018-2019 school year and who have a history of not submitting reports.

Private schools citywide that continue to violate reporting requirements will face civil suits from the City Attorney's office.

The announcement comes the same day as Senate Bill 276 went before the state's Assembly Health Committee as California lawmakers weighed new legislation aimed at cracking down on vaccination exemptions.

The measure would give the state health department oversight of doctors who grant more than five medial exemptions a year as well as oversight of schools with vaccination rates below the 95% threshold to provide "community immunity."

The bill comes at a time when officials are trying to prevent the spread of measles cases, which reached a 25-year high in the country this year.

(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)

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