Oklahoma Lawmakers Pass Bill Prohibiting Vaccines at School, Mobile Clinics Without Parental Consent

May 23, 2019

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The Oklahoma House sent the governor a bill Thursday to require written parental consent before Oklahoma kids get any vaccine at school or in a mobile clinic.

Supporters said House Bill 2339 is needed to kids don’t get doubled up on shots. Rep. Cynthia Roe said that’s not an issue because every vaccine given is already reported to the Oklahoma State Immunization Information System.

"The likelihood that they’re going to be revaccinated for the same — whether it’s measles, mumps, whatever — the chance that it’s going to be duplicated is very, very low," Roe said.

Bill coauthor Rep. Kevin West could not identify any instance of kids in the state being vaccinated without consent at school.

Rep. Jacob Rosecrants told West he isn’t familiar with the mobile vaccination clinics.

"Are there a couple of examples of this mobile vaccination thing here? I’ve never heard of it," Rosecrants said.

"I don’t know of any specific cases that I can give you a name, date and time when it happened that someone inadvertently got it. I have heard of some stories where that has happened," West said.

Supporters also said most kids get their immunizations at a doctor’s office, anyway. Rep. Jason Dunnington said the bill doesn’t consider families who can’t access or afford traditional health care.

"Because of a high degree of poverty in the state of Oklahoma, there are thousands of kids that don’t have a pediatrician, that don’t go to a doctor, that don’t get the vaccines that they needed in order to be able to go to public school," Dunnington said.

The percentage of Oklahoma kindergartners up-to-date on all shots ranges from 55 to 100%, depending on the county.