To read about F's and my London trip, start here and click "newer post" to continue the story.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Texas House Votes to Reject HPV Vaccine Requirement (Update3)

March 14 (Bloomberg) -- The Texas House of Representatives voted today to overturn Governor Rick Perry's executive order that sixth-grade girls be vaccinated against the virus that causes cervical cancer.

The measure passed 118 to 23, according to Chris Cutrone, a spokesman for House Speaker Tom Craddick.


The vaccine is there. People can get it for their kids, or not. Young women can get it, or not. I just don't see mandating that all 6th grade girls be vaccinated against an STD. And why girls, and not boys? There will inevitably be girls who can't or won't get the vaccination, or for whom it isn't effective (I don't believe the 100% effective hype). If the boys don't get vaccinated, these girls aren't protected. Not to mention that gay men are at risk of cancer from HPV. I know a man that happened to. Is it even legal to mandate that only girls get this thing? I'd be very surprised if it is.


Tsiporah said...

I actually read this post when you first posted and declined to comment because I actually agreed with making the HPV vaccine mandatory. This would help the people who can not necessarily afford it access it more easily. I think that the pros to being vaccinated would out weight the cons and it could save a lot of little girls. But if the parents object that strongly about it there should be a easy opt-out process. I am not sure why boys are not vaccinated for this virus maybe it has something to do with the fact that the virus is not as easily detected in men...(shrugs)

Laura(southernxyl) said...

You can always comment disagreeably, Tsiporah, as long as you are not disagreeable about it.

: )

It's the libertarian in me, I guess. I'm OK with mandating measles vaccines for schoolage kids, b/c you can't help sitting next to some kid in math class who sneezes on you, and as I said, no vaccination is 100% for everyone, so it's important to get a herd immunity for things like that.

I'm troubled by the fact that Merck apparently donated a lot of money to the Texas governor's campaign fund. Don't want little girls being made to get shots in order to further someone's political career. And that Merck has been paying to lobby for making this thing mandatory - although with the recent scrutiny they've stopped doing that - I think is highly inappropriate.

Oh, and they can detect it in males. One can view this in one of two ways: either cervical cancer, which doesn't affect boys, is a very bad thing, which is true, and which bolsters the notion that boys ought to be vaccinated to protect girls who aren't protected by the vaccine; or that girls, once again, have to bear all the burdens of unauthorized sexual activity while the boys just do their thing. I can be quite the cynical feminist on occasion.