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ER visits in NY with an unvaxed child - automatic CPS call?

post #1 of 11
Thread Starter 

We currently live in the Pacific Northwest but may move east in a few years.  We are looking at NY (specifically NYC or surrounding areas) as we have some family there.  But our son is unvaxed and I hear NY State is pretty tough on non-vaxing.  

 

We are homeschooling so the vaxing for school issue isn't a problem but I have heard that if you go to the ER with an unvaxed child they'll call CPS on you.  Is this true?  Has anyone had experience with this?  Our son has asthma and life threatening food allergies so we are somewhat more prone to ER visits.  The idea that his being unvaxed could set off a whole CPS things scares me and could turn me off NY completely.

 

Thanks!

post #2 of 11

The bottom line is really to keep your son out of the ER.  My oldest had severe asthma from his 1st birthday (after a year of head to toe eczema) until about 7, when we found practitioners to bring him out of it.  I'm in CT, an hour outside of NYC, but have found wonderful naturopaths, chiropractors, JMT, NAET, acupuncturists, and others, other than MDs to help us.  My subsequent 2 kids have never had a drug (except dental) in their lives (they are 20 & 16 now).  I have only taken them to alternative practitioners.  The last time in the ER, the head of the pulmonary dept admitted to me that what they do there will never make him better.  He will either grow out of it or get worse.  That wasn't good enough for me.  Plus the steroids made him so crazy, I was afraid he'd run into the street and get hit by a car.  There is a wealth of good alternative practitioners out there.  Find who works for you.

post #3 of 11
Thread Starter 

We actually do use alternative practitioners.  I believe my son's asthma is now under control with homeopathy but I still cannot say for certain we will NEVER need to go to an ER.  And while I hope he outgrows his food allergies with the help of other alternative treatments (homeopathy, NAET,etc . . .) were he to have an anaphylactic reaction to one of his food allergens the only option for me would be an ER.

post #4 of 11

Being - I have heard stories of CPS being called on parents for not vaccinating.  That being said, it could be an urban legend.  I wonder if your current doctor would be willing to write a letter explaining the reasons your child is unvaccinated (due to severe allergies maybe?).  Your child and you could carry the letter ( have it laminated and keep it on you).

 

Just a suggestion. 

post #5 of 11

Okay, I'm of no help but I just had to stop by and say that is CRAZY and I really hope it's untrue. IME the NYC metro area is not great (understatement) for non-standard medical anything, unfortunately.

post #6 of 11

My mother faced this at times.  They didn't call CPS, but a social worker Did stop by.  It's all very well to try and avoid the ER, but sometimes that's simply not possible.  However, when at the ER and filling out forms, who says you have to be honest about the exact vaccination status of your kids?  Just say they're up to date and then deal with whatever issue it is you're in for.

post #7 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by tatebk View Post

My mother faced this at times.  They didn't call CPS, but a social worker Did stop by.  It's all very well to try and avoid the ER, but sometimes that's simply not possible.  However, when at the ER and filling out forms, who says you have to be honest about the exact vaccination status of your kids?  Just say they're up to date and then deal with whatever issue it is you're in for.



Lying is never a good idea and if they somehow discover that you are lying, it's almost guaranteed that they will call CPS.  If you bring your child in with say a high fever and bad cough and say that your child is vaccinated, they may not test for everything because they'll assume that your child wouldn't have a particular disease when they may, in fact, have it.   You have made a conscious and informed (I hope) decision to not vaccinate your child.   Own it, educate those who need educating.  Has there ever been a case in recent history where a child has been removed from his/her parents simply because of a non-vac choice? I've never heard of a case and just googled it and besides people saying that parents who don't vaccinate should have their children removed (strickly an opinion), I haven't seen any actual cases where they have been.

post #8 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by SpottedFoxx View Post



 If you bring your child in with say a high fever and bad cough and say that your child is vaccinated, they may not test for everything because they'll assume that your child wouldn't have a particular disease when they may, in fact, have it.  



I'm sorry, my assumption is that a high fever and a cough is a good reason for a trip to the pediatrician's office.  When I think bringing a child to the ER I think stitches, or broken bones, where the vaccination history has no bearing.  Please forgive the assumption.  In NY it's not about defending your personal decision to not vaccinate, it's defending your religious beliefs and people there trying to prove you don't actually have any religious standing or beliefs.  You can enter with a child that needs a few stitches and have a social worker called to talk.

 

But besides that, I was simply referencing what happened when my mother was dealing with me and my siblings, in NYC, 18-31 years ago.  I am currently pregnant and having to face the decision of what to do myself.  If you give birth in a hospital, for example, I have been warned to bring a lawyer AND a letter from a religious leader in order to try and prevent the Hep B shot.  (I'm hoping not to be in a hospital).  Do you have experience with dealing with NY hospitals and the vaccination topic in particular SpottedFoxx?  If so, I would genuinly be very curious as to what happened?

post #9 of 11
Quote:
Originally Posted by tatebk View Post
If you give birth in a hospital, for example, I have been warned to bring a lawyer AND a letter from a religious leader in order to try and prevent the Hep B shot.  (I'm hoping not to be in a hospital).  Do you have experience with dealing with NY hospitals and the vaccination topic in particular SpottedFoxx?  If so, I would genuinly be very curious as to what happened?


Yikes! I can tell you that across the river in NJ,  the very mainstream hospital where I (reluctantly) gave birth was entirely respectful of our wishes not to give HepB. They told us they do not routinely give it to newborns in any case. I was really surprised by that, considering that NJ has no stand-alone birth centers, few practicing midwives, and an astronomical section rate. Of course this was four years ago. But if you are NYC/lower Hudson River Valley it could be worth it to check out NJ. As counterintuitive as that sounds!

post #10 of 11

I found a great stand alone birthing center thankfully, where they have you go to your pediatrician for all shots.  I would just end up in a hospital due to complications, and then honestly, I'm probably not going to be as prepared and would be having different priorities.  The back-up hospital is used to dealing with a lot of highly religious people, so my hope is they would be more used to requests they might otherwise not agree with.  Unlike my other local hospital, (I live in Brooklyn, I do have more than 2 obviously) this one has a rooming-in option which I would snap up in a second.  I would worry a great deal about what the nurses would give the baby out of "routine" if they did all exams in the nursery away from me.  Frankly, in this day and age, I still cannot believe they take babies away from you and plop them in a nursery.  If it weren't for the stand-alone birthing center, I think I would have looked into home birth.  

post #11 of 11

Only a friend of a friend's experience.  She doesn't vaccinate and woke up in the middle of the night with a baby with 105 fever and coughing so hard he'd throw up.  She called her pediatrician who advised her to head to the ER.  She did contemplate telling them she vaccinated and thought against it.  It was just adnovirus.  She mentioned to the nurse that she had considered lying and it was the nurse who told her that honesty is always the best policy and that had it been something a vaccine would have prevented, chances are they never would have looked for it.  Instead the baby got a much fuller panel. This was in Manhattan so I don't know if that makes a difference.  

 

These days, it's not uncommon for a broken bone, sprain or stitches to trigger a visit from the social worker.  My fully vaccinated son bit through his bottom lip at camp and in the ER the social worker stopped by to check in and hear what had happened.  No biggie.  We have nothing to hide.  Now that I think about it.... in all the times my son has been in the hospital, with the exception of the first time when he was having back to back, unexplained seizures, I don't think we have ever been asked if he has been vaccinated.  I'd imagine if he stepped on a rusty nail they may inquire about a tetnus shot.  

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