RESEARCH SUPPORT, NON-U.S. GOV'T
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Childhood vaccination requirements: Lessons from history, Mississippi, and a path forward.

Vaccine 2015 October 27
Mississippi consistently leads the United States in childhood vaccination with a greater than 99% measles-mumps-rubella vaccination rate for children entering kindergarten. The story of how this came to pass in a state that lags behind on nearly every other public health measure is pertinent given the recent outbreaks of measles in the United States, especially in pockets of the country where there is strong resistance to vaccination. The fight against compulsory vaccination law is centuries old and the enduring success of Mississippi at repelling challenges to their vaccination requirements is a testament to the public health infrastructure and legal framework established in the state. Herein we trace the anti-vaccination movement from its origins in England up until the present time in the United States and explore how Mississippi has established a model vaccination system. Seminal court cases and legislation are evaluated for their impact. Finally, contemporary battles over vaccination legislation are examined and the feasibility of national-level change is considered.

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