Health

California Bill May Reshape Vaccination Laws Across the Nation

Jessica Damon, of El Cerrito, kisses her daughter, Lucinda Mendes, 3, after leaving a committee hearing where lawmakers approved a measure requiring California schoolchildren to get vaccinated, at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., Wednesday, April 22, 2015. The bill, SB277 by Sens. Ben Allen, D-Santa Monica, and Richard Pan, D-Sacramento, was approved by the Senate Education Committee on a 7-2 vote after the authors made amendments that allows families who chose to not vaccinate to homeschool children together and allows independent study. The bill now goes to the Senate Judiciary Committee. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)
Jessica Damon, of El Cerrito, kisses her daughter, Lucinda Mendes, 3, after leaving a committee hearing where lawmakers approved a measure requiring California schoolchildren to get vaccinated, at the Capitol in Sacramento, Calif., Wednesday, April 22, 2015. (AP Photo/Rich Pedroncelli)

(NBC News) – Vaccine laws across the nation may be toughened, observers say, if California passes a fervently debated bill that would strip parents’ rights to exempt kids from immunizations based on personal beliefs.

A potential end to California’s opt-out provision gained ground Wednesday when the state senate’s education committee voted 7-2 to require full vaccinations for almost all public school students.

The move came in the wake of “anti-vax” parents were often blamed for the Disneyland measles outbreak that sickened 147 people as it spread to at least five states.

“Other states will be looking carefully at the California experience if this goes through,” said Dr. Eric Kodish, director of the Cleveland Clinic’s Center for Ethics, Humanities and Spiritual Care. “If they become a place where, as I would predict, fewer children get sick and die, it’s something other states would want to look at.”

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