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Majority of Parents will not leave their Children with Unvaccinated Kids at Daycare

Update Date: Nov 18, 2014 10:27 AM EST

The majority of parents believe that all children attending a daycare center should be vaccinated, a new study found. According to the University of Michigan C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health, 74 percent of parents would not leave their children at daycare with unvaccinated kids.

For this research, the team administered a survey to a nationally representative group of parents who had children between the ages of zero and five in June 2014. The poll created a scenario in which one in four children at the daycare center was not fully vaccinated and asked the parents for their opinions. Overall, 74 percent of the parents stated that they would remove their child from the daycare if that scenario were to be true. Only 10 percent of parents believed that children who were not up to date with their vaccines should be allowed to attend daycare.

"This scenario mirrors the national statistics that show approximately 25 percent of preschool children in the United States are not fully vaccinated," stated Sarah J. Clark, M.P.H., associate director of the National Poll on Children's Health and associate research scientist in the University of Michigan Department of Pediatrics. "Parents may not realize that so many children are not up-to-date; in some daycares, this scenario is a reality."

Around 66 percent of the parents stated that daycare centers should disclose information regarding unvaccinated children. Only 25 percent believed that the centers should give out specific names of these children.

"Our poll finding that parents want to know the number of children lacking vaccines makes sense. That information might help parents understand the risk that their child could contract a vaccine-preventable disease - or transmit the disease to a vulnerable family member, such as a person with cancer," said Clark according to the press release.

Furthermore, 41 percent of the parents believed that the unvaccinated child should be excluded from the center until she/he received all necessary vaccines. 28 percent agreed but added that there should be a grace period allowed and 21 percent stated that parents of unvaccinated children should get a waiver-note from the doctor.

"Results of this poll indicate that most parents want strong policies around making sure children in daycare are up-to-date on vaccines," Clark said. "The bottom line is this poll shows that parents of young children have real concerns about whether vaccination standards are upheld in the daycare setting. Parents should feel empowered to ask about daycare vaccination policies, such as how the daycare handles the situation of children who are not up-to-date, and whether they check children's vaccination status every year."

For more information on the poll, click here.

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