The outbreak of measles in Washington has caused a sigh because of exceptions that allow residents to give up vaccination for personal or philosophical reasons.
On Friday, the Home Committee proposed a bill to curb these exemptions for measles, mumps and rubella vaccine (MMR) for school-aged children. The Health and Wellness Committee endorsed the bill, supported mainly by the Democrats, and the Seattle Times, reporting the sponsor Paul Harris Bill. He will head the next meeting before the House Standards Committee before the full house, reports The Times.
The bill of 1616 was adopted with 10-5 votes with full support from nine Democrats. According to Molly Solomon to Oregon's public broadcasting, Harris said his belief is questioned about his support for the bill. He also said he was "accused of murdering the baby and that I would go to hell for this bill."
The outbreak in Washington led governor Jay Incles to announce a state of emergency last month among nearly 30 confirmed cases in Clark County, a figure that nearly doubled in the coming weeks.
There were at least 53 cases of measles confirmed in Clark County and one in King County, and the investigators looked at three additional supposed cases. Forty-seven of these cases, the majority of young children, are confirmed to have affected individuals who are not immunized. Only two cases in Clark County are confirmed to be in people over the age of 18, with 38 cases in children 10 years of age or younger. Measles may be fatal in young children.
Even though, the bill has led to outrage by hundreds of anti-vaccination advocates who protested against the bill last week outside the Capitol. Among the attendees was Robert F. Kennedy, a junior, hardcore vaccine critic who met with President Donald Trump in 2017 to investigate completely unjustified anti-vaccinated claims about vaccine-autism.
[Seattle Times via The Hill]