France to Require All Parents Vaccinate Their Children
France will require all parents vaccinate their children, French Prime Minister Édouard Philippe announced in a speech on Wednesday. The announcement follows a warning from the World Health Organization (WHO) that measles is spreading across Europe, despite vaccines which can prevent the virus, Independent reported.
France currently requires all children to be vaccinated against diphtheria, tetanus and polio, and will add eight more required vaccinations — pertussis, measles, mumps, rubella, hepatitis B, Haemophilus influenzae bacteria, pneumococcus and meningococcus C — starting in 2018.
France is not the only country to have a rise in measles. In 2017, CNN reported 73 confirmed cases of measles in Minnesota, compared to 70 cases of measles in the entire U.S. in 2016, a majority of whom were unvaccinated, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. This is likely a result of antivaccination sentiments surrounding the measles, mumps, rubella (MMR) vaccine.
Many antivaxxers falsely claim the MMR vaccine causes autism spectrum disorder, a statement which has been repeatedly disproven. In 1998, the Lancet published a study which claimed autism was linked to the MMR vaccine. The publication then retracted the study in 2010 after scientists were unable to replicate its findings, and the study’s author, Andrew Wakefield, lost his medical license.
France now joins Italy in mandating vaccines. In Italy, to attend a state-sponsored school, all children must be vaccinated.