Incidents of measles outbreak will likely reduce in California as Governor Jerry Brown signed a bill making it mandatory for schoolchildren to be vaccinated, news said.
In a statement released, the Governor cited health as primary reason for signing the legislation.
“The science is clear that vaccines dramatically protect children against a number of infections and dangerous diseases. While it is true that no medical intervention is without risk, the evidence shows that immunization powerfully benefits and protects the community.”
A measles outbreak earlier this year has been reported to have started in Disneyland, where one infected visitor was believed to have a link to seven cases of measles in California and two in Utah.
Gov. Brown was aware the bill was wrapped with controversy especially from parents, but with the new legislation, only medical reasons — through judgment and sound discretion of a physician —are accepted as grounds for exemption. Personal and religious reasons are out.
“The legislature, after considerable debate, specifically amended SB277, to exempt a child from immunizations whenever the child’s physician concludes that there are circumstances, including but not limited to, family medical history, for which the physician does not recommend immunization,” the Governor expounded.
With the approval of the bill, children who are enrolled but have not been vaccinated yet will be permitted to stay, but they are expected to present proof of vaccination when they start kindergarten and or seventh grade. Parents who choose not to receive vaccinations will have to provide homeschooling to their children.
According to California Department of Public Health, childcare facilities with low rates of vaccinations are vulnerable to outbreak of measles and other vaccine-preventable diseases.
Measles is a viral and highly contagious disease that begins with fever, which could last for many days and followed by cough, conjunctivitis, runny nose and rashes.
The new law makes California the biggest state to compel even daycare pupils to be vaccinated.