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Lauren Cornwell
Mr. Rogers
Government 3
2 November 2015
The Public Health Safety Act
Before the polio vaccine was developed, up to 20,000 people were paralyzed by polio
(Smith and Bouck 28). Widespread vaccination began in 1924 with the first vaccine for tetanus.
These vaccines were an important part of the war effort during World War II and routine
vaccination of soldiers played a major role in reducing casualties on the battle field. Small pox
has become extinct due to the successful worldwide vaccination program. Polio is fast becoming
the second disease heading toward that fate (Young 11). There is controversy, however,
regarding a widespread public vaccination program, such as the misconception that
immunization triggers autism in children. And the other argument against mandatory vaccination
is a persons religious beliefs. Mandatory vaccination should be required for all because it is the
most effective method of perpetuating herd immunity, it saves time and money, and prevents
The first reason why mandatory vaccination should be a law is because it is the most
effective method of perpetuating herd immunity. Herd immunity protects the whole group, if the
majority is vaccinated, protecting the few individuals who are not. The premise of herd immunity
is that, if the majority of children are vaccinated in a population, it would be very difficult for a
germ to spread. Even if a few children come down with an infection, the germ cannot spread
easily because most of the other children around the infected child are immunized (Young 12).

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The success of community-wide vaccination programs utilizing the herd immunity system
exemplifies the necessity of a mandatory vaccination law. When a critical portion of a
community is immunized against a contagious disease, most members of the community are
protected against that disease because there is little opportunity for an outbreak (National
Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases). If you live in a community where vaccination
coverage is low and your child is not vaccinated, it is likely that many of the people that child
comes into contact with will also not be vaccinated, thereby highly increasing the likelihood of
that child contracting an infectious disease. This child will then pass on that disease which can
then spread the disease very quickly throughout the population. This is an example as to why
mandatory vaccination is necessary for all. Along with herd immunity, mandatory vaccination is
cost effective for both the individual and the government.
The second reason why mandatory vaccination should be required is because vaccines
save time and money for everyone. Vaccines are among the 20th centurys most cost-effective
public health tools for preventing disease. The Department of Health has stated, if you get the
flu vaccine, you are 60% less likely to need treatment for the flu by a healthcare provider
(FLU.GOV). Given this information, if one was to have gotten vaccines then they will most
likely not get sick, resulting in no doctor visits. Saving oneself time from not having to miss
school or work and save money from not paying any medical bills. The Center for Disease states
vaccine- preventable diseases have a costly impact, resulting in doctors visits, hospitalizations,
and premature deaths (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention). So, if people do not get
vaccinated they have a higher risk at getting sick, possibly even terminally ill, making the
outcome being placed in the hospital, costing huge amounts of time and thousands upon
thousands of dollars. The Department of Health & Human Services states: getting the vaccine

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has shown to offer substantial other benefits including reducing illness, antibiotic use, time lost
from work, hospitalization, and deaths (FLU.GOV). From this information it is clear, that if
people got vaccinated it is proven that they will not have to spend their time or money on an
medical bills to get better because they are not sick, compared to those who have a higher chance
of getting sick from not getting vaccinated. Not only does getting vaccinated prevent time loss by
being sick and not going to work and paying huge amounts of money on medical expenses, it
also prevents isolationism.
The final reason as to why making vaccines mandatory for all is a good thing is because
it would help prevent isolationism. An unvaccinated child can face lifelong differences that could
scar them and or put them at risk. For example the Department of Health says, there are social
implications of not vaccinating your child- from exclusion to quarantine (Department of
Health). If a child were to not be vaccinated, other kids would most likely not want to be around
him or her, afraid of possibly catching something they might have, making that child secluded
and have no friends. Resulting in the conclusion they should be vaccinated. Now this is different
to lets say a child who has no friends because they like being alone, they could have friends if
they choose but, they dont like other kids and choose to be alone, whereas unvaccinated children
would not choose to be alone. Adding to this, Health Service says vaccination is the best way to
protect yourself and those you love (Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services). This is
why vaccines help to prevent isolationism, if everyone is vaccinated nobody has to worry about
being shut out or shunned by friends or peers because of not being vaccinated. Though evidence
has been shown how vaccines prevent isolationism and other important points, people still do not
believe the information and argue that vaccines are poison, that when given, runs through your

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The two main arguments circulating mandatory vaccination are, vaccines cause autism in
small children and go against a persons religious beliefs. To really understand the debate about
vaccinations and autism, one needs to know what autism truly is; Autism is one type of
developmental disorder, where the children with it have problems with communication,
socialization, and behavior. As for the debate, parents believe that the ingredients in the vaccines
are to blame for autism, resulting in not wanting to vaccinate their children. And there are four
main religions that believe vaccines go against their religious beliefs: Islamic (Muslims),
Judaism (Jews), Catholicism (Catholics), and Christianity (Christians), or also known as
Abrahamic religions. These religions are mainly against vaccinations because they do not follow
their religious diets and go against who they believe in. The reason as to why there should be no
exemptions to mandatory vaccination using the excuse, it causes autism is because a lot of
scientific evidence indicates that autism has a genetic cause (Smith and Bouck 171). From this
evidence, there has been research proving autism has bene deemed genetic and therefore could
possibly not be caused by vaccines because vaccines have nothing to do with genetics. And as
for why there should be no exemptions for religious beliefs either in not getting vaccinated is
because a source from John Hopkins Hospital quotes, exemptions can create tension between
personal rights and community rights (Religion and Vaccines). Those who do not believe in
mandatory immunity often face tension from their community population due to the
communitys anger that those not vaccinated are endangering the publics health, regardless of if
it going against someones religious beliefs. Mandatory vaccination should be required for all
because the reasons people give to try to not get vaccinated are not sound and not true; making it
unethical for anyone not to be vaccinated because it is for the greater good for everyone to be

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Mandatory vaccination should be compulsory for everyone because it is the most
successful and effective method of perpetuating herd immunity, saves time and money, and
averts isolationism. If mandatory vaccination for all does not become law then more and more
people in time will stop vaccinating, thinking the diseases are going away. But if everyone were
to stop all together, later in time the diseases that were eradicated, that are almost unknown
would stage a comeback (What if we stopped vaccinating?) and then there would be a world
crisis on the countrys hands. This is why it is so important to vaccinate because it not only keeps
people healthy and disease free, but also forestalls any future disease out breaks all over the
globe. To spread awareness on how important it is to vaccinate to everyone around the world,
the president or the governor of California should get organizations to make a charity and send
speakers to countries to talk about how important it is to vaccinate. And get medical personnel to
donate their time to perform free vaccinations to underprivileged people who are unable to afford
the vaccinations themselves.

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Works Cited
Community Immunity (Herd Immunity). National Institute of Allergy and Infectious
Diseases. National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, 21 October 2010. Web.
17 October 2015.
Lyskowski, Peter. Varicella-Zoster Virus. Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services.
Missouri Department of Health & Senior Services. Web. 20 October 2015.
Prevention & Vaccine Safety. FLU.GOV. U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.
Web. 17 October 2015.
Religion and Vaccines. Institute for Vaccine Safety Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of
Public Health. Institute for Vaccine Safety Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of

Health, 19 May 2015. Web. 19 October 2015.

Smith, Michael Joseph, and Laurie Bouck. The Complete Idiots Guide To Vaccinations. New
York: Marie Butler-Knight, 2009. Print.
Social Implications of Not Getting Vaccinated. Department of Health. New York State
Department of Health, June 2015. Web. 24 September 2015.
What if we stopped vaccinating? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. National Center
for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, 23 May 2014. Web. 23 September
Why Are Childhood Vaccines So Important? Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, 23 May 2014. Web.

October 2015.

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Young, Leslie. The Everything Parents Guide To Vaccines. Massachusetts: Karen Cooper, 2010.