NVIC has always questioned the calls by pharma, medical trade groups and public health officials to push widespread use of meningitis vaccine, including the fact that meningococcal disease is rare in the United States, the vaccine itself does not cover all prevalent meningococcal strains and it is a very costly vaccine. are the only two states to require HPV vaccine for middle school attendance, but both states allow an “opt out” provision and do not require parents to formally file a medical or religious exemption.
NVIC and many parents and health care professionals opposed AB499 and, when Governor Jerry Brown signed AB499 into law, NVIC issued a press release calling the act “a violation of parental informed consent.” In terms of government-operated vaccine tracking registries, some states, such as Texas, are attempting to remove informed consent rights from the intrusive electronic registries like in SB 40 and HB 772, while others, such as Idaho and North Dakota, are expanding childhood tracking systems to include adults.
According to Dawn, the challenge with reaching legislators is that they have been getting inaccurate and misleading information for so many years from medical trade groups, such as the American Academy of Pediatrics, and there needs to be a paradigm shift.
She strongly encourages Vermont’s elected lawmakers to consider the importance of unrestricted preservation of the fundamental human right informed consent, and not grant any further power to unelected agencies.
Another hot topic across multiple states is “no exceptions” employer mandates tying vaccination status to right to employment, although this is not a new target in 2013.
“We can only do so much by getting the information out there,” Dawn said.