Oregon is taking one more step in removing the right of the parents to deny their children from having measles vaccines except for medical reasons. This tough legislation will try to remove the state’s record in having the highest numbers of parents in the nation who are opting out for non-medical vaccine exemptions.
The planned legislation however is being met with strong resistance from parents who want to maintain the status quo. They want their rights preserved with regards to their privilege in keeping their children from being vaccinated with the mmr vaccines.
The measure will do away and eliminate all forms of parental exemptions including personal, religious, and philosophical exemptions which would excuse them from having their children vaccinated. The state of Oregon will be the second state in the country after West Virginia in enacting the law. Several states are also planning to do the same such as California for one, but they are having difficult time in doing away especially with religious exemptions.
Many parents in Oregon, more so for those who are members of the unvaccinated groups, would like to opt out or at least delay all kinds of vaccinations. During the kindergarten registration in 2013-2014 classes, as many as 7 percent of the parents filed for personal exemptions. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention or the CDC said that for the entire country, the median for exemption is 1.8 percent.
According to National Center for Educational statistics, approximately, there were 3.7 million public school kinder enrollees in the fall of 2014 alone. How much would be 1.8 percent of that especially if we include all the enrollees in the country.
Those who are against the law argued that it takes away their medical freedom and right to informed consent. The supporters on the other hand say the public’s health should come first.
Measles infection has now spread to several states and infected more than a hundred individuals already since the Disneyland incident last December 2014.