June 12, 2017 – Preventing Vaccination
Anchor lead: Should kids in foster care get all the vaccines they are eligible for? Elizabeth Tracey reports
Foster children in Texas may not be able to get the full range of vaccines for which they are eligible, the state legislature decided recently, with the HPV vaccine in particular a target. Connie Trimble, an HPV and cervical cancer expert at Johns Hopkins, says such a choice is indefensible.
Trimble: We are the first generation fortunate enough, maybe we’re the second, but we grow up expecting to know our grandparents. That’s because of three basic public health advances: running water, antibiotics, and vaccines. The idea that somebody could prevent a child from being protected against diseases that could kill them and also infect people with whom they interact who are vulnerable because they themselves can’t be vaccinated. It doesn’t just stop with the kid. :30
Proponents of the legislation are citing parental rights as the reason to withhold vaccination for children in the foster care system until dispensation for the child is decided. Trimble notes that for many, such a posture is tantamount to assuring that no vaccines will be given. At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.