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Assalaam aleikum, i am planning to have my birth here in Abu Dhabi in shah Allah, as my husband is working here, and it is difficult to go back to USA for having baby. In USA, vitamin k, and Hepatitis B are routinely given at birth. However, parents are not FORCED to vaccinate (although their Ob and Pediatrician will often relentlessly bully them and fear monger) but the point is no one HAS TO vaccinate. So, what is the procedure here in Abu Dhabi hospitals? Is the HAAD vaccine schedule merely recommendations, or are they mandatory? Also, i am aware most nurserys and schools require vaccines, but are religious and/or medical exemptions allowed? I am not here to argue vaxxed vs anti vaxxed, so your OPINIONS, or lambasting me for not wanting to vaccinate is not helpful. Thanks!

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Thanks Jillybean! When you say "vaccination details are required when registering with a main stream school", are you aware if vaccine exemptions are recognized and accepted, if the parents choose to opt out due to either religious and/or personal beliefs, or due to health concerns? If so, do you or any one here know how to obtain an exemption (paperwork, etc.)? Also, I noticed a lot of schools here do vaccines at school. Do you know if the parent's consent is obtained prior to administering the vaccines to their child? If vaccines are required for school, I am considering homeschooling - does anyone know if homeschooling is allowed here? Sorry for the long question, but this issue is causing me much anxiety. Thanks again!

  

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RC  - well, I can answer some questions! I'm not sure if vaccine exemptions owing to health or religious reasons are accepted at schools. However, I would suggest calling Abu Dhabi Education Council and asking this, as the rules will be the same for all schools. Schools, at the the behest of HAAD (Health Authority Abu Dhabi), do run vaccination programmes during the school day. I have always been contacted ahead of time, and given the option for my child not to participate. I am not anti vaccinations per se, but I like to avoid unnecessary vaccinations / exposure to chemicals where possible. Last year my daughter was exempted from the additional MMR vaccination at my request.

I am absolutely not criticising your choices, as I understand entirely where you are coming from, but just want to flag to you that the herd immunity that may be relied on in other countries is not present here, as there is a large labour force from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, etc, and measles and other sicknesses are not unknown. 

There is a large home schooling group in Abu Dhabi. I don't have contact details, but an internet search should get you started off. I hope this helps!

 

 

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On 4/16/2018 at 8:27 PM, Jillybean said:RC  - well, I can answer some questions! I'm not sure if vaccine exemptions owing to health or religious reasons are accepted at schools. However, I would suggest calling Abu Dhabi Education Council and asking this, as the rules will be the same for all schools. Schools, at the the behest of HAAD (Health Authority Abu Dhabi), do run vaccination programmes during the school day. I have always been contacted ahead of time, and given the option for my child not to participate. I am not anti vaccinations per se, but I like to avoid unnecessary vaccinations / exposure to chemicals where possible. Last year my daughter was exempted from the additional MMR vaccination at my request.I am absolutely not criticising your choices, as I understand entirely where you are coming from, but just want to flag to you that the herd immunity that may be relied on in other countries is not present here, as there is a large labour force from India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, etc, and measles and other sicknesses are not unknown. There is a large home schooling group in Abu Dhabi. I don't have contact details, but an internet search should get you started off. I hope this helps!

  Wow, thanks so much, Jillybean for the detailed, very helpful response! What you have told me relieves a lot of my anxiety now about this! I will definitely look into the home school options here, or teach my children myself for as long as I am qualified to in terms of knowledge, in shah Allah. It also sounds like the school your child attends gave you proper notification of the vaccination campaign at school, and then respected your parental right of choosing to opt out of another MMR dose. Given this, my husband and I may consider sending our children to one of the schools here after all, in shah Allah. I know I am way ahead of things and worrying probably too much already, as I am newly wed, and don't even have children yet, but I guess I just want to be proactive. I am just curious, did the school or any one give you a problem about not wanting your child to be given another MMR dose? I hope not, as everyone has unique  health, personal, and religious situations that need to be respectfully considered. After all, if vaccines really are protective against the diseases vaccinated against, people who have been vaccinated and their vaccinated children shouldn't have a need to worry about those who opt out of some or all vaccines. 

Thanks again for your kindly help and advice. Take care! 

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Hi RC - both the school and HAAD were supportive and understanding of my request to opt out of the additional MMR vaccine. I don't know if this is is because it was an additional vaccine, and she has already been vaccinated, or whether they will be like this all the time, but they were really good - managed expectations, communicated clearly, and handled it well. Congratulations on your marriage :)

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Hi runningcactus, 

I will be moving to abu dhabi soon and wanted to know the same thing. 

How did they handle vaccines at the hospital? Were you able to opt out of all of them? 

Also, school. Is there any way your kids can go to school without vaccines ? Religious exemptions ? 

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Hi Traveler, 

I was asking those questions re: vaccines way ahead of time so as to be prepared for any decision making in the future. I don't currently have any children, as I stated earlier, so I don't have any first hand experience. However, based off of Jillybean's response, it seems to me that in theory you are highly encouraged, but not forced to vaccinate at the hospital after birth. With regards to schools, it sounds like it is more wishy-washy, and at the whim of the school administration. I also was told by doctor of mine that when his wife had a child in hospital here recently, they opted not to vaccinate (their American hospital born children weren't vaccinated either), and they weren't bothered about it, and they stated their preferences both in advance, during, and after the birth, so as to ward off any confusion. They also were sure to never let their newborn child out of their sight (to prevent anything happening behind their backs). They also send their two school aged children to private UAE curriculum schools here, so I am assuming that they found a way. 

Sorry I don't know more. Things really are getting scary globally with these vaccine mandates, and we have to be prepared for all eventualities. Depending on how strongly you are opposed to vaccines, it may be necessary to make alternate plans if things really get crazy with mandates globally, and you still want to not vaccinate. I know that I feel very strongly and will relocate anywhere in the world if necessary to protect my rights. Right now things seem good here in shah Allah, but that could change. I wish you the best. 

Take care, 

RC

 

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