NEW YORK - The New York State Health Department is requiring children to get some vaccines at an earlier age than before.
Officials say students entering kindergarten in September now need two doses of measles and mumps vaccines and at least one rubella shot. In the past, students could wait until they were 7 years old to receive the second dose.
Health officials say the revisions are based on the most current science. They come months after a multistate measles outbreak that began in California.
The Health Department also sent out a letter to school officials across the state informing them of the changes and pointing out that children are not required to be vaccinated if they have "acceptable evidence of immunity or a medical or religious exemption to vaccination."
Wantagh resident Mary Louise Peterkin told News 12 that the decision to vaccinate shouldn't be up to the state.
"I feel it should be the choice of the parents. It's their children, their choice," says Peterkin.
Others told News 12 that the vaccinations are a great idea.
"After what happened in California with all the outbreaks, I think it should be a requirement throughout the country," says John Kologi, of Syosset.
The requirements go into effect Sept. 1.