News in Brief
States Mull Tightening Exemptions for Routine Childhood Vaccines
Maine lawmakers would end nonmedical exemptions for routine childhood vaccines required by schools and certain health-care facilities, under a Democratic bill.
A Republican bill, however, would leave medical exemptions at the "sole discretion" of a health-care provider. That measure would also prevent medical exemptions from being reviewed and school boards and municipalities from having stricter immunization requirements than state law.
Federal data show Maine had among the nation's highest rate of nonmedical exemptions in 2017-18.
Multiple studies have debunked claims that measles, mumps, and rubella vaccinations increase the risk for autism.
Oregon and Washington state are also considering bills to end nonmedical exemptions for routine childhood vaccines.
Vol. 38, Issue 26, Pages 4, 4Published in Print: March 20, 2019, as States Mull Tightening Exemptions for Routine Childhood Vaccines