Refuse to vaccinate? You may be told to seek care elsewhere.

Sep 3, 2016

By Bonnie Miller Rubin

Say a family comes into your pediatrician’s office for a regular checkup. And say this is also a family that refuses to vaccinate their children. Your doctor can tell them to take their business elsewhere. And in fact, the American Academy of Pediatrics today recommends that action.

“Parents, pediatricians and policymakers all have a role in protecting children from diseases like measles and whooping cough,” said Benard Dreyer, president of the AAP, which is taking a stronger position on this issue than ever before. “No child should have to suffer through a disease that could have been prevented by a vaccine.”

In an effort to address the anti-vaccine trend, the AAP issued a new policy statement today opposing all nonmedical exemptions for vaccines. If, after counseling, skeptical parents still choose to opt out, doctors may request “that they seek care elsewhere.”

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