Friday, January 27, 2012

Virginia Progressive Caucus Statement On HPV Vaccine Bill

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                        Contact: Nicholas Kessler, 804-381-6647
January 27, 2012                                       

Repeal Of Vaccination Mandate Is "A Terrible Idea" And "Indefensible"

Richmond - This morning, the Virginia House of Delegates voted to give final approval to HB 1112, a bill that would repeal Virginia's requirement that girls receive the human papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine. HB 1112 is patroned by Del. Kathy Byron (R-Campbell), Del. Timothy Hugo (R-Fairfax), Del. Mark Cole (R-Stafford), Del. Anne Crockett-Stark (R-Wythe), Del. Gordon Helsel (R-Poquoson), Del. Keith Hodges (R-Gloucester), Del. Robert Marshall (R-Prince William), and Del. Richard Morris (R-Isle of Wight).

The Progressive Caucus strongly opposes this bill.

Delegate Jeion Ward (D-Hampton) said, "This is a bad bill for many reasons. If requirements are repealed, there will be hundreds of poor little girls denied the ability or the funds to receive the vaccine, thus further exasperating health care disparities. As one of the original co-patrons of the HPV notification law, its potential repeal is a terrible idea."

Delegate Joe Morrissey (D-Henrico) said, "HPV infects over 10,800 women each year. Additionally, over 4,000 women die of cervical cancer each year. The HPV vaccination is supported overwhelmingly by the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Academy of Family Physicians, and the American Congress of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. It is indefensible that the Republican Party would put the lives and health of many women at risk by voting for the elimination of this law."