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Thursday, 16 May 2019

Oregon vaccine bill dead. No mandatory vaccinations

[David Icke]: Critics blasted a decision by Oregon lawmakers that killed a bill aimed at getting more children vaccinated for measles and other preventable diseases in order pass a tax on large businesses, saying it jeopardized public health.

Despite passing the House and having the necessary votes in the Senate, the measure to make it harder for families to opt out of required vaccinations was nixed as part of a deal announced Monday to end a week-long Republican walkout over a multibillion school funding tax.

Under the vaccination measure, sponsored by state Rep. Cheri Helt, R-Bend, children would only have been be able to forgo vaccine requirements with a doctor's note, otherwise they'd be unable to attend public school.

Sen. Elizabeth Steiner Hayward, a Democrat from Beaverton and the bill's sponsor, said the move prevents the state from protecting its citizens from a public health crisis.

"This isn't how I want our state to be known," she said. "This is a major public health issue and it's critical we address it."

More than 70 people, including four from Oregon, were diagnosed as part of a months-long outbreak in the Pacific Northwest that public health officials just recently declared over.

"As the recent measles outbreak demonstrated, vaccine-preventable illnesses pose a growing threat due to the relatively low rate of immunizations in the Northwest," said Robb Cowie, a spokesman with the Oregon Health Authority, the state's health care agency.

Oregon has the highest rate of unvaccinated kindergartners in the country, with at least 7.5% of toddlers claiming an exemption. In some schools, more than 40% of children are unvaccinated through the state's lax exemption process. That makes Oregon uniquely susceptible to an outbreak, according to Diane Peterson, associate director for Immunization Action Coalition, which receives funding from the CDC.

"Oregon in particular is a hotbed for a measles outbreak," Peterson said. "All you need is to introduce one person with the disease into the community and it will spread like wildfire."' more>>>...

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