Amendments Shift Focus of Bill to Vaccine Requirements
Assembly member Ed Hernandez (D-Baldwin Park) has amended legislation (AB 16) that would have required California girls entering the seventh grade to be immunized against human papillomavirus to apply more generally to school vaccination requirements, the Contra Costa Times reports.
Hernandez's original bill immediately would have begun mandating the vaccine for HPV, which has been linked to cervical cancer.
The amended legislation would require that before any child vaccine could be mandated in California, it first must win approval by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices, a panel of federally-appointed experts. A five-year waiting period would follow ACIP's approval of the vaccine, after which time the state public health officer would determine whether the vaccine should be required (Zapler, Contra Costa Times, 4/17).
Hernandez revised the measure after committee members from both parties said they were reluctant to support some of the bill's provisions and voiced concerns about widespread use of the HPV vaccine at this stage of its availability (California Healthline, 4/17).
Assembly member Alan Nakanishi (R-Lodi), the top Republican on the committee, will still oppose the amended bill, saying that he thinks the Legislature should determine what vaccines should be required.
The Assembly Health Committee on Tuesday is expected to reconsider the measure (Contra Costa Times, 4/17).