This would not ever have become an issue if it were not for the implementation of collectivist/socialist central planning of medical care in this country, growing in size and scope since Medicare was passed in 1965. Since the government now pays for some people's healthcare by taking away money from other people, they feel they must minimize their costs by implementing "mandatory" programs of preventative medicine.
The HPV vaccine (aka Gardisil) is the focus of many state legislature debates and laws since 2006. It is a product of the Merck company, which you can be certain profits nicely from successfully lobbying various governments to mandate the vaccine's use.
This post was inspired by this NYT article:
The HPV (Human Papilloma Virus) vaccine is effective towards the two virus variants that cause 70% of the cases of cervical cancer. Vaccines have certain risks, and studies have shown the rate of adverse reactions to be within a certain arbitrary low rate as to be acceptable (according to the .gov) to be administered to the public that still have faith in the system, such as it is. The vaccine is not 100% effective for each individual; it does not take in some people. More than 3 out of 10 who get the shot will not get the benefit that the shot promises.
Many commentators describe their own experiences with HPV or cervical cancer, very moving and not to be diminished in any way by my commentary. Others choose to vent their exasperation and disagreement with either Mrs. Bachmann, or the party to which she belongs. Still others dwell on the stupidity of resisting an effective vaccine.
My point is this: Any government that mandates a person to be vaccinated is unreasonable, coercive by definition, and tyrannical.
Freedom in the United States is not freedom from poverty or disease. Luck or providence will dictate a person's suffering or lack thereof.
Freedom in this country is supposed to be freedom from government interference in a citizen's private affairs, in particular regarding personal choices about their body and private property.
A federal or state government which forces a citizen to do anything to their body or property goes against anything that anyone over 40 was weaned on in school, and what our troops supposedly fight for: personal freedom.
Wouldn't you prefer to learn the risks, benefits, and alternatives to a medical treatment and make your own value judgement about the risk-benefit ratio, or would you prefer coercion of a sort like fines, suspension from school, jail time, a criminal record? It may be that a reasonable person opts out of an effective treatment for their own good reason.
If a compos mentis citizen with private insurance refuses this vaccine, and that refusal violates a federal or state law, then this citizen becomes a criminal for making a decision about his or her own body.
What freedom, then?
Read further about the States meddling in our health here:
The debate in states has centered-in part-around school vaccine requirements, which are determined by individual states. Some states grant regulatory bodies, like the Board of Health, the power to require vaccines, but the legislature must still provide funding. Some people who support availability of the vaccine do not support a school mandate, citing concerns about the drug's cost, safety, and parents' rights to refuse. Still others may have moral objections related to a vaccine mandate for a sexually transmitted disease. Financing is another concern: if states make the vaccine mandatory, they must also address funding issues, including for Medicaid and SCHIP coverage and youth who are uninsured, and whether to require coverage by insurance plans. This has caused some to push for further discussion and debate about whether or not to require the vaccine.
The CDC announced that the HPV vaccine is available through the federal Vaccines for Children (VFC) program in all 50 states, Chicago, New York, Philadelphia, San Antonio and Washington DC. VFC provides vaccines for children ages nine to 18 who are covered by Medicaid, Alaskan-Native or Native American children, and some underinsured or uninsured children.
The Michigan Senate was the first to introduce legislation (S.B. 1416) in September of 2006 to require the HPV vaccine for girls entering sixth grade, but the bill was not enacted. Ohio also considered legislation in late 2006 to require the vaccine (H.B. 703), which also failed. Since 2006, legislators in at least 41 states and D.C. have introduced legislation to require the vaccine, fund or educate the public about the HPV Vaccine and at least 20 states have enacted legislation, including Colorado, Indiana, Iowa, Louisiana, Maine, Maryland, Michigan, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, North Dakota, Rhode Island, South Dakota, Texas, Utah, Virginia and Washington. The CDC announced that The New Hampshire Health Department announced in 2006 that it will provide the vaccine at no cost to girls under age 18. As of May 2007, the department reports they have distributed over 14,000 doses in the state. South Dakota's governor also announced a similar plan in January 2007 that combines $7.5 million in federal vaccine funds and $1.7 million from the state's general fund. As of May 2007, the department reports distributing over 20,000 doses of the vaccine. The Washington legislature approved spending $10 million to voluntarily vaccinate 94,000 girls in the next two years.
(This is the Perry action that Bachmann was sniping at during the GOP debate):
On February 2, 2007, Texas became the first state to enact a mandate-by executive order from the governor-that all females entering the sixth grade receive the vaccine, with some exceptions. Legislators in Texas passed H.B. 1098 to override the executive order and the governor withheld his veto.
The Virginia legislature passed a school vaccine requirement in 2007 and considered a bill that would delay that requirement but it was passed by indefinitely by the Senate Committee. In 2007, at least 24 states and D.C. introduced legislation to specifically mandate the HPV vaccine for school (California and Maryland withdrew their bills). DC's bill was enacted and requirement started 30 days after Congressional Review Period expired. See the bills marked under the school mandate column in the table below for more information.
As of October 2010, 19 state have proposed HPV related legislation or resolutions in 2009-2010. See the charts below for more information.
As of April 2011, 3 states have proposed HPV related legislation for the 2011 session. See the chart below for more information.