Missouri children attending daycares, K-12 public schools, or college might not be required to get vaccinated against certain illnesses if they have a “conscientious belief” opposing the immunizations. State Representative Suzie Pollock is proposing the change for vaccinations against polio, rubella, mumps, tetanus, whooping cough, hepatitis B, and others. Her bill would also mean the state’s roughly 120,000 K-12 private school students would not have to get those vaccinations. Linda Neumann with the Missouri Association of School Nurses cites a study saying about 40-percent of parents against vaccinations oppose them for philosophical reasons and another 60-percent oppose them due to inconvenience.
During a House committee hearing, Pollock said the state needs to reign in schools and local health departments because she said they are making it tougher for parents to get student vaccination exemptions.