Vaccinations should be required

In an opinion piece in the Los Angeles Times, Author David Ropeik writes that the government should regulate and require vaccination.

He cites statistic such as a measles outbreak caused by one person, which “cost two local hospitals a total of nearly $800,000, and the state and local health departments tens of thousands more, to track down the cases, quarantine and treat the sick and notify the thousands of people who might have been exposed.”

Ropeik suggests making it difficult to opt out of vaccination, and imposing restrictions on social activities like school trips for people who haven’t been vaccinated.

Ropeik says, “This is about calling on government to do what it’s there for in the first place: to protect us from the actions of others when as individuals we can’t protect ourselves. It is appropriate, and urgent, that we act to protect public health from those whose choices about vaccines are putting the rest of us at risk: We make them stop.”

In other words, if a parent chooses not to vaccinate their child, fine. But then that child, who is now a potential danger to him or herself AND others, shouldn’t have the right to be around and to endanger other children.

It’s an interesting and somewhat reasonable line of thought. What do you think?

Here are some of my blogs on vaccinations over the last year:

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