COMPULSORY VACCINATION: WHAT EXCEPTIONS APPLY?

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People can be exempt from compulsory vaccination for various medical reasons.

This is shown by the vaccination obligation regulation, which has been available since Sunday and must be decided on Monday in the National Council. As has been known for some time, pregnant women are not subject to mandatory vaccination, but there may also be exceptions for cancer patients or those living with an autoimmune disease.

Below is an overview of who is exempt from mandatory vaccination and who is considered vaccinated.

Those who have been vaccinated three times and those who have been vaccinated twice on time after surviving covid infection fulfill the vaccination requirement. Those who have not yet done so must now be vaccinated. A second vaccination must follow within 65 days of the first vaccination, and a third within 190 days of the second. Special regulations apply; for example, if the first vaccination was given more than a year ago, a completely new vaccination series must be started.

Not just any vaccine may be used: In addition to the vaccines approved by the EMA, two Chinese and three Indian vaccines are also recognized; the Russian Sputnik vaccine is not included. However, anyone vaccinated at least twice with a vaccine recognized abroad but not in this country (such as Sputnik) is considered to have been vaccinated for the first time and must therefore have one more minor prick.

In principle, compulsory vaccination applies to persons aged 18 and over residents in Austria. But there are numerous exceptions, many of them due to pre-existing conditions. People who would endanger their health with vaccination are exempt – this is the case with allergies or hypersensitivity to individual ingredients of the vaccines or an acute episode of a severe inflammatory disease or autoimmune disease. Also, individuals with a corona infection or a critical, severe febrile illness or infection, multimorbid individuals, and those suffering from suspected painful vaccine side effects are not subject to mandatory vaccination.

If people cannot have an adequate immune response to vaccination for medical reasons, they are also exempt from mandatory vaccination. Such medical reasons include bone marrow or stem cell transplantation, organ transplantation, ongoing cortisone therapy, immunosuppression or therapy with certain medications, active cancer that has been treated with chemotherapy, biologics, or radiation therapy within the last six months – even without ongoing treatment in the case of metastatic cancer – and other conditions that lead to a comparable immunological situation.

Pregnant women remain exempt from the vaccination requirement. It is also waived for 180 days after sampling for individuals who have survived a confirmed covid infection.

The duration of the presence of a prime reason is not included in the vaccination intervals.

Patients can obtain medical confirmations from specialized outpatient clinics where they are treated or from the local medical officer or epidemiologist. It is possible to get a certificate without examining the documents submitted to show that there is a reason for the exemption, and there is no doubt about its authenticity.

Medical confirmations of the presence of neutralizing antibodies are not considered as evidence.

MANDATORY VACCINATION: WHAT PENALTIES APPLY?

Anyone who fails to be vaccinated despite not meeting the requirements for exemption will be fined – up to 600 euros in the simplified procedure and up to 3,600 euros in the ordinary course. If one raises an objection or does not pay, it comes to the latter.

It is not until March 16, in phase two, that penalties are imposed. Then, those who cannot provide proof during police checks will be reported to the district administrative authorities. If they do not provide evidence, they will be notified by the district administrative authorities. In phase two, no more than four administrative penalty proceedings in a calendar year may result in a penalty. In phase three, in which unvaccinated persons are to be identified through computer-assisted data comparison, there are a maximum of two.

  • source: k.at/picture: pixabay.com
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