No vaccination, no nursery: Galicia plans ban against ant-vax movement

Regional authorities in Spain’s northwestern region of Galicia are studying plans to ban children who are not fully vaccinated from attending public daycare centers.

No vaccination, no nursery: Galicia plans ban against ant-vax movement
Photo: sonar512/Depositphotos

The measure is to combat the growing number of parents who choose not to vaccinate their children because they believe it to be more harmful that good.

The anti-vaxxers movement has been blamed for an increase in previously eradicated childhood diseases such as measles from some parts of the world.

The World Health Organization said anti-vaccine views were a “top 10 global health threat” in 2019.

Galicia’s regional Social Policy Ministry is considering the proposal to force parents to have their children vaccinated in order to attend state day care facilities.

It would mean all children aged between 0 and three years-old must have a full vaccination record in order to be enrolled in a public nursery.

The measure could be in place as soon as the next academic year begins in September, reported regional newspaper La Voz de Galicia. 

Under Spanish national law vaccines are voluntary not compulsory but are provided for free on the national health service.

Figures for 2018 showed that 97 percent of the infant population were vaccinated correctly, but that leaves between 80,000 and 150,000 children in Spain whose parents have chosen not to vaccinate them.

READ ALSO: Spain is officially the world's healthiest country

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Spain issues warning as child hand sanitizer poisoning cases spike

The number of children treated in Spain for accidental poisonings after ingesting hand sanitising gels has soared during the pandemic, the government said Wednesday, urging parents to keep the products out of reach.

Spain issues warning as child hand sanitizer poisoning cases spike
Photos: AFP

There have been 874 reported cases of intoxications from hand sanitising gels so far this year, compared to just 90 during all of 2019, the National Toxicological and Forensic Sciences Institute, a unit of the justice ministry, said in a statement.   

Two-thirds of the cases involved children, especially those under the age of two. The vast majority swallowed the hand-sanitiser although some became intoxicated after getting the product in their eyes or inhaling it.


No fatalities have been reported and over 80 percent the poisoning victims recovered “in a short time”, the institute said.   

The most common symptoms were, vomiting, diarrhoea, coughing, blurred vision and red eyes.

In a video message posted on Twitter, Justice Minister Juan Carlos Campo called the figures “alarming” and urged parents to “keep hand-sanitising gels out of reach of children and insist that its use to disinfect hands always be supervised by an adult”.

Como ministro de Justicia, pero también como padre, me preocupan los datos de intoxicaciones por gel hidroalcohólico en niños que ha difundido hoy el @INTCFjusticia. Mantengamos estos productos fuera del alcance de los más pequeños. Protejámonos, protejámosles.

— Juan Carlos Campo (@Jccampm) October 14, 2020

As in other European countries, used of hand-sanitising gels has soared in Spain to curb the spread of Covid-19.

The country has become of the pandemic's hotspots in the European Union, with close to 910,000 registered cases and over 33,000 deaths.

READ ALSO: What happens when there is a Covid-19 outbreak at a school in Spain?