In the midst of a nationwide measles outbreak that has infected more than 100 people and was fueled by a high rate of unvaccinated individuals in California, State Senators [Dr.] Richard Pan (D-Sacramento) and Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) announced plans to introduce legislation limiting parents’ ‘personal belief’ exemptions in order to increase the number of preschool and childhood immunizations in the state.
AHF, which launched ‘Protect Your Child—Vaccinate,’ a billboard and advocacy campaign in November 2014 before the current outbreak, will vigorously support the legislation, which it sees as a prudent public health measure aimed at protecting the public against preventable communicable diseases.
SACRAMENTO, CA (February 5, 2015) AIDS Healthcare Foundation (AHF), the largest global AIDS organization and a leader in HIV and STD prevention and treatment, today announced that it will support planned statewide legislation that will limit parents’ ‘personal belief’ vaccine exemptions in California.
In the midst of a nationwide measles outbreak that has infected more than 100 people and which was fueled by a high rate of unvaccinated individuals and children in California, California State Senators [Dr.] Richard Pan (D-Sacramento – SD 6)—a pediatrician—and Ben Allen (D-Santa Monica) announced plans to introduce legislation limiting parents’ ‘personal belief’ exemptions in an effort to increase the number of preschool and childhood immunizations in the state. The announcement was met with enthusiasm by many working in the public health arena, and the Los Angeles Times reported yesterday that Governor Jerry Brown may be open to restricting such parental choice vaccine exemptions.
“We will vigorously support legislation planned by California State Senators Richard Pan and Ben Allen intended to abolish or limit the so-called ‘personal belief’ exemptions, which this current measles outbreak shows are an anathema to prudent public health practices,” said Michael Weinstein, President of AIDS Healthcare Foundation. “We are sadly now seeing how such unfounded and indulgent exemptions wreak havoc with the public as this outbreak plays out across the country. We thank the Senators for their plans for the bill and will press the California Senate and Legislature to act swiftly and favorably on such a bill.”
In November 2014—well before the current measles outbreak (which originated at Disneyland during Christmas week) began roiling the nation—AIDS Healthcare Foundation launched an advocacy and billboard campaign headlined, “Protect Your Child—Vaccinate.” In a nod to the oversized role that uninformed celebrities such as Jenny McCarthy—with no medical or public health backgrounds or experience—have played instilling unwarranted fear of vaccines in the public, AHF titled its related website: www.AirheadCelebs.com .