21st November 2017
The Royal Australasian College of Physicians (RACP) has written to the South Australian health department expressing its concern about the proposed ‘No Jab No Play’ law, which, in its current form, would deny unvaccinated children access to childcare and pre-school.
As paediatricians who advocate for the welfare of children, we are bound to draw attention to the enormous body of research demonstrating the benefits of childhood education before school commencement, especially in disadvantaged households. Denial of this access is a serious matter, with likely long-term adverse consequences for the healthy development of the children involved. In this context, the risk of VPDs to fully vaccinated children from children who are under-vaccinated is often exaggerated.
As an alternative, the RACP has suggested a ‘No Form No Play‘ policy, which would require parents to provide vaccination status records prior to enrolment, but would not require the children of those parents opposed to vaccination to be vaccinated.
The Australian Vaccination-skeptics Network (AVN) is prepared to support a ‘No Form No Play’ law because it strikes the right balance between the interests of those who support vaccination and those who don’t. ‘No Form No Play’ would act as a reminder to those parents who are not opposed to vaccination to get their children up-to-date, but would preserve the medical autonomy of those parents who no longer vaccinate after witnessing serious adverse vaccine reactions in their children.
The AVN continues to support a wide-ranging & independent inquiry into the effectiveness and safety of vaccination.