Several US States to Harden Measles Vaccination Laws

Several US States to Harden Measles Vaccination Laws

Although the Disneyland measles outbreak and debate over the measles vaccination has disappeared from headline, but it seems the US states are still taking the issue quite seriously.

It has been found that the US states have decided to harden the vaccination laws. At least 14 US states have introduced bills that would make it quite hard for the parents to get any type of exemptions from not getting the vaccinations.

Activity around vaccination law is not unusual in the state legislature, as the several numbers of bills have been introduced within a matter of few weeks. Some observers said these bills might have more grip.

Diane Peterson, associate director for immunization programs at the Immunization Action Coalition, a pro-immunization group, said, "It's all spurred on by the measles outbreak. It's causing policymakers to give another look at what their state can do to tighten vaccination requirements".

Ms. Peterson said she has been working on a bill that would allow parents who wants an exemption from vaccination to get a signature from a health-care professional that they have received information on the risks and benefits of immunization to their child and the community.

She said those parents will have to renew their exemption when their child enter seventh grade. It should not be an easy task to get their child into school without vaccinations than with vaccinations, says Peterson.

The bills had been in progress for several years, she said, but they have been waiting since long for the right 'legislative climate'.

Mark Largent, a historian at Michigan State University in East Lansing, said the common problem with many of these proposed laws is that they focus on the wrong issues.

Rather than using scare resources to make waivers harder to obtain, these states and their proposed bills should largely focus upon helping the under-vaccinated kids who are under-vaccinated due to their lack of access to health-care.