Argue for or Against Mandatory Vaccination for All Students of Public School

Infants and child death have significantly decreased with the development of medicine. Many infectious diseases, which were mainly children’s, are almost eradicated by vaccination. Therefore, governments of many countries advise vaccination for children who attend public schools, and in some countries, it is mandatory. The main carriers for infectious diseases usually are children who attend public schools, and they can spread it to people who cannot be vaccinated due to health conditions. Moreover, new viruses and mutations of existing viruses appear every year, in addition to epidemics caused by vaccine-preventable diseases. Therefore, this paper advocate in favor of mandatory vaccination for students attending public institutions.

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Preventing infectious outbreaks as well as promptly reacting to it is the responsibility of the government. Therefore, Congress introduced the bill for mandatory vaccinating of all children in 2019 (Wilson). It will exclude the personal preferences, religious beliefs, or cultural reasons for not vaccinating students, with the only exception to a medical condition (Wilson). The reaction to this bill among the public was uncertain: some people support this decision when others are firmly against it.

Supporters say that the bill would help control vaccine-preventable outbreaks, and the level of public health would increase (Meier). Those who oppose it believe that vaccine is an unnecessary measure and violation of freedom of choice and support an anti-vaccine movement. It is true, in a democratic society, nobody can dictate people what to do against their will. On the other hand, people are responsible for their health, but they also must consider others around them.

Children are very active in their desire to learn the environment, and most of their time they spend in public educational facilities, such as kindergartens or schools. Most of bacterias and infections originate on different surfaces and items. Therefore, young learners are primary carriers for many infectious diseases, and they can spread it to other children and adults outside through close contact (Meier, 53).

One of the main arguments of people who support the anti-vaccine movement is that the healthy immune system can fight the infection without any medical interference (Leifer). It is true, people with a robust immune system are known to recover faster with minor or no health complications, and some even show the record of no sickness at all. However, there are groups of people, who due to health conditions, are at high risk of being exposed to infections and viruses.

Some people also refuse to vaccinate themselves and their children for religious beliefs. They believe that technology and pharmaceutical drugs are unnatural and against the will of their god or gods (Leifer). Everyone has the right to freedom of choice, and, of course, all parents know what is better for their children (Leifer). However, in society, only common social rules can work, and all the religious and personal beliefs should be put aside if someone else’s life could be in danger. If one wants one’s freedom and choice to be respected, one must do the same for others. Obligatory vaccination should be a social requirement rather than advice since it applies to the lives of more than one person.

Patients with cancer, people with a weak immune system, and pre-existing health conditions are at risk of exposure to infectious diseases and cannot be vaccinated (Meier). Moreover, for those patients, it is more dangerous and more likely to be lethal. Therefore a student with cancer does not have the same choice of vaccination as others, but also has a right to attend a public school. However, some other students are not vaccinated, so it makes him even more vulnerable to infections, since unvaccinated children can contract it on him (Meier). Today, it is quite an important argument both medical and moral.

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The history of humanity numbers many outbreaks that caused millions of deaths. Fortunately, the development in the field of medicine allowed almost eliminating many known diseases (Leifer). However, the main problem for scientists is that viruses that cause most of the infections mutate faster than they can study them. Moreover, some diseases do not have a vaccine. Therefore, the possibility of another outbreak happening is only a question of time.

Since the existing vaccines can only prevent the current disease, and they are useless against future infections, it makes the task even more complicated for doctors. The outbreaks of vaccine-preventable diseases take the resources and funding away from finding the cure for other sicknesses, like cancer or HIV, and researching possible future viruses (Meier). It is another factor that should be considered for making an argument for vaccination.

Mandatory vaccination of all the children who attend public institutions can help to prevent the outbreaks of existing infectious diseases and decrease a chance of the potential future epidemic. It also can take the risk away from people who cannot be vaccinated, who are in groups of high risk due to pre-existing health conditions. Patients with cancer or immunodeficient diseases have the same rights and preferences as healthy ones. People who want to coexist in society peacefully must respect each other’s preferences, religion, and freedom of choice. However, respect for common health must be unconditional, which means it must be considered regardless of one’s beliefs or thoughts.

Works Cited

Leifer, Cynthia. “Mandatory Vaccination Will Protect All Citizens.” The Pharmaceutical Journal, 2015. Web.

Meier, Nicolas, et al. “Individual Preferences for Voluntary vs. Mandatory Vaccination Policies: An Experimental Analysis.” European Journal for Public Health, vol. 30, no. 1, 2019, pp. 50–55. Web.

Wilson, Frederica S. “H.R.2527 – 116th Congress (2019-2020): Vaccinate All Children Act of 2019.” Congress. Web.

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