Religious Objection to Immunization
Child's Name ______________________________
Parent's Name _____________________________
Officials, Day Care Providers, Health Care Providers, Hospital Staff, and State Health
In accordance with the Texas Education Code, Section 38.001,
regarding exceptions to immunization requirements, we hereby certify that the administration of
vaccine and other immunizing agents to our child, ______________________, conflicts with the tenets
and practice of a recognized religion, of which we are adherents. We therefore request that our
child be exempted from the school immunization requirements.
Let this letter also apply for religious exemption from the other
state immunization requirements in accordance with the religious exemption provisions of Texas
Health and Safety Code, Section 161.004 (statewide immunization of children), Human Resource Code,
Section 42.043 (admission to day care centers), and Texas Administrative Code Title 25 Part 1 Rule
§97.62(immunization requirements in Texas elementary and secondary schools and institutions of
higher education) and Rule §97.101(statewide immunization of children by hospitals, physicians, and
other health care providers).
We are informed of and we fully understand the risks and benefits
of non-immunization for our child. We swear that all of the foregoing statements are true to the
best of our information, knowledge, and belief.
Parent ________________________ Date _________
Subscribed and Sworn before me this _____ day of ___________,
Notary's Signature and Seal
CHAPTER 38. HEALTH AND SAFETY
Sec. 38.001. Immunization; Requirements; Exceptions.
(a) Each student shall be fully immunized against diphtheria, rubeola, rubella, mumps, tetanus, and
poliomyelitis, except as provided by Subsection (c).
(b) Subject to Subsection (c), the Texas Board of Health may modify or delete any of the
immunizations in Subsection (a) or may require immunizations against additional diseases as a
requirement for admission to any elementary or secondary school.
(c) Immunization is not required for a person's admission to any elementary or secondary
school if the person applying for admission:
(1) submits to the admitting official:
(A) an affidavit or a certificate signed by a physician who is duly registered
and licensed to practice medicine in the United States, in which it is stated that, in the
physician's opinion, the immunization required would be injurious to the health and well-being of
the applicant or any member of the applicant's family or household; or
(B) an affidavit signed by the applicant or, if a minor, by the applicant's parent or guardian
stating that the immunization conflicts with the tenets and practice of a recognized church or
religious denomination of which the applicant is an adherent or member, except that this exemption
does not apply in times of emergency or epidemic declared by the commissioner of public health; or
(2) is a member of
the armed forces of the
and is on active duty.
(d) The Texas Department of Health shall provide the required
immunization to children in areas where no local provision exists to provide those services.
(e) A person may be provisionally admitted to an elementary or secondary school if the person has
begun the required immunizations and if the person continues to receive the necessary immunizations
as rapidly as is medically feasible. The Texas Department of Health shall adopt rules relating
to the provisional admission of persons to an elementary or secondary school.
Added by Acts 1995, 74th Leg., ch. 260, Sec. 1, eff.
May 30, 1995
Human Resource Code
CHAPTER 42. REGULATION OF CERTAIN
FACILITIES, HOMES, AND AGENCIES THAT PROVIDE CHILD-CARE SERVICES
SUBCHAPTER A. GENERAL PROVISIONS
Sec. 42.043. Rules for Immunizations.
(a) The department shall make rules for the
immunization of children in facilities regulated under this chapter.
(b) The department shall require that each child
at an appropriate age have a test for tuberculosis and be immunized against diphtheria, tetanus,
poliomyelitis, mumps, rubella, and rubeola and against any other communicable disease as recommended
by the Texas Department of Health. The immunization must be effective on the date of first
entry into the facility. However, a child may be provisionally admitted if the required
immunizations have begun and are completed as rapidly as medically feasible.
(c) The Texas Department of Health shall make
rules for the provisional admission of children to facilities regulated under this chapter and may
modify or delete any of the immunizations listed in Subsection (b) of this section or require
additional immunizations as a requirement for admission to a facility.
(d) No immunization may be required for
admission to a facility regulated under this chapter if a person applying for a child's admission
submits one of the following affidavits:
(1) an affidavit signed
by a licensed physician stating that the immunization would be injurious to the health and
well-being of the child or a member of the child's family or household; or
(2) an affidavit
signed by the child's parent or guardian stating that the immunization conflicts with the tenets and
practices of a recognized religious organization of which the applicant is an adherent or a member.
(e) Each regulated facility shall keep an
individual immunization record for each child admitted, and the records shall be open for inspection
by the department at all reasonable times.
(f) The Texas Department of Health shall provide
the immunizations required by this section to children in areas where there is no local provision of
Acts 1979, 66th Leg., p. 2362, ch. 842, art. 1,
Sec. 1, eff.Sept. 1, 1979. Amended by Acts 1993, 73rd Leg., ch. 43, Sec. 5, eff.
Sept. 1, 1993
; Acts 1997, 75th Leg., ch. 1063, Sec. 7, eff.
Sept. 1, 1997
Health and Safety
SUBTITLE H. PUBLIC HEALTH PROVISIONS
CHAPTER 161. PUBLIC HEALTH PROVISIONS
SUBCHAPTER A. IMMUNIZATIONS
Statewide Immunization of Children.
(a) Every child in
the state shall be immunized against vaccine preventable diseases caused by infectious agents in
accordance with the immunization schedule adopted by the board.
(b) Hospitals shall
be responsible for:
(1) referring newborns for immunization at the time the newborn screening test is performed;
(2) reviewing the immunization history of every child admitted to the hospital or examined in
the hospital's emergency room or outpatient clinic; and
(3) administering needed vaccinations or referring the child for immunization.
shall be responsible for reviewing the immunization history of every child examined and
administering any needed vaccinations or referring the child for immunization.
(d) A child is
exempt from an immunization required by this section if:
(1) immunization conflicts with the tenets of an organized religion to which a
parent, managing conservator, or guardian belongs; or
(2) the immunization is medically contraindicated based on an examination of the child by a
physician licensed by any state in the
(e) For purposes of
this section, "child" means a person under 18 years of age.
(f) The board shall
adopt rules that are necessary to administer this section.
(g) A parent,
managing conservator, or guardian may choose the health care provider who administers the vaccine or
immunizing agent under this chapter.
Added by Acts 1993,
73rd Leg., ch. 43, Sec. 3, eff.
Taken From The Texas Department of Health:
Exemptions to Immunization Requirements
Chapter §97.62 of the Texas Administrative Code* (TAC) describes the conditions under which
individuals can seek exemption from
Medical Contraindications. Children and students can be exempted from one or all vaccine
requirements if a medical condition exists that would make it harmful for them to be vaccinated as
Religious Conflicts. Children and students can be exempted from some or all vaccine
requirements if vaccination conflicts with their families' religious beliefs.
Service in the Armed Forces.
Persons who are on active duty with the
armed forces are
Exemptions for Religious Conflicts
Like 48 other states,
law provides for
exemption from vaccination requirements in cases where vaccination conflicts with a family's
religious beliefs or practices. States differ in how this exemption is defined and documented, and
what may be sufficient documentation in one state may not be sufficient in another.
Like 35 other states,
law does not allow
exemption based on personal or philosophical beliefs.
Title 25 Health Services §97.62(2)* (TAC) states:
"A signed affidavit must be presented by the child's parent or guardian stating that the
immunization conflicts with the tenets and practices of a recognized religious organization of
which the applicant is an adherent or member. This exemption does not apply in times of emergency
or outbreak declared by the commissioner of health or local health authority."
signed affidavit - signed by the parent or guardian in the presence of a notary public.
The affidavit does not have to be signed by a minister or church official.
immunization - if the conflict does not include all vaccines, specify the one(s) that
will not be received.
tenets and practices of a recognized religious organization
- the department does not maintain a list of tenets, practices, or religious organizations and does
not require that the tenet, practice, or religious organization be specified. There is no legal
basis for requiring that a tenet, practice, or religious organization be identified.
adherent or member - no documentation is required
does not apply - Disease outbreaks indicate increased risk to the community and the
unvaccinated child. For this reason, children may be excluded from a school or child-care facility
if there is increased incidence of a disease against which the child is not protected. In order to
prevent unnecessary exclusions, a record of any vaccines the child has received should be documented
at the school or child-care facility.