Originally published on www.nvic.org, by Barbara Loe Fisher
This past year, we have seen many lawmakers in the U.S. and other countries vote to eliminate or severely restrict civil liberties in the name of the public health.1 2 3 One of the most outrageous legislative actions violating parental and human rights took place in Washington, DC in November 2020 when City Council officials gave doctors the power to vaccinate children as young as 11 years old and hide what they did from parents.4 5 6 7 8 The DC Mayor refused to veto the bill9 10 and, in January 2021, the U.S. Congress sat on its hands11 12 and gave tacit approval to enactment of the most dangerous child vaccination law in America.
In a breathtaking violation of medical ethics and several federal laws, the new vaccine concealment law in Washington, DC allows doctors to extract "informed consent" from young children too immature to know what informed consent13 means or what a vaccine reaction looks and feels like.14 15 16 The DC City Council majority, with only three members dissenting, cruelly disempowered parents by voting to make it illegal for a doctor, insurance company or school administrator to divulge a child's vaccination history in records that can be seen by the child's mother or father.17
Parents Won't Have Information to Protect Child From Vaccine Injury
An 11-year old child does not know or understand his or her personal health history but most parent do. If a child has experienced previous vaccine reactions, has severe allergies or other health conditions that could increase vaccine risks,18 19 parents kept in the dark will not have a way to protect their child from further harm.
Parents who don't know which vaccines their children have been given will not be able to monitor them for signs of a potentially life-threatening vaccine reaction that requires immediate medical treatment.20 If the child is injured or dies after vaccination, parents will not know they must apply to the federal Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP) before the filing deadline expires.21
Parents will not know their insurance company has been billed for vaccines. Parents will not know that a school the child attends is in possession of their child's secret vaccination records even when there is a vaccine exemption for religious belief reasons on file with the school.
This blatant violation of a parent's moral right and legal responsibility to make medical risk decisions on behalf of a minor child was endorsed by the American Academy of Pediatrics22 and pushed through by the DC City Council, while the Mayor and the US Congress looked the other way.
Washington, DC Vaccine Concealment Law Violates Federal Laws
First, DC's vaccine concealment law violates vaccine safety provisions of the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986, a federal law that confirmed vaccine injuries and deaths are real and made preventing vaccine reactions a national priority. Parents of DPT vaccine injured children secured vaccine safety provisions in the 1986 Act, which directs doctors and other medical workers to give parents written vaccine benefit and risk information before a child is vaccinated23 and also mandates that vaccine providers record which vaccines the child is given in a record the parents can access.
Specifically, the 1986 Act mandates that "health care providers who administer a vaccine" must give a child's legal representative "a copy of the information materials" developed by the Centers for Disease Control QUOTE "prior to the administration" of a vaccine.24 25 The 1986 law also requires each person administering a vaccine to QUOTE "ensure that there is recorded in such person's permanent medical record or in a permanent office log or file to which a legal representative shall have access upon request" certain information: Number 1: the date of administration of the vaccine; Number 2: the vaccine manufacturer and lot number of the vaccine; and Number 3: the name and address and, if appropriate, the title of the health care provider administering the vaccine."26
These informing and recording vaccine safety provisions were included in the 1986 Act specifically to provide parents with information they need to make well informed vaccine decisions for their minor children; and to help parents recognize and prevent vaccine reactions; and to ensure a vaccine reaction is reported to the government's Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (VAERS).27 28
If a doctor can secretly inject a young child with one or more vaccines and hide the vaccination records, how will parents know what is happening when a vaccine reaction occurs? They won't have the information they need to take their child to an emergency room or be able to make the connection between the vaccinations and a child's regression into poor health.
This lack of critical information about their child's medical history also means parents will likely miss the deadline for filing a claim in the federal Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP), which has awarded more than 4.5 billion dollars to the vaccine injured over the past three decades.29
DC's vaccine concealment law violates the Family Educational Rights and Privacy Act, known as FERPA, which guarantees parents the legal right to have access to their children's education records, including health and vaccine records, at the primary and secondary school level.30
Vaccine Concealment Law Violates Informed Consent Rights
DC's vaccine concealment law also violates the long standing ethical principle of informed consent to medical risk taking,31 which has governed the ethical practice of human research and medical practice since the Nuremberg Code was published in 1947 after the Doctor's Trial.32 33 Informed consent is exercised on behalf of minor children by parents, who are morally and legally responsible for the well-being and financial support for their children until they are old enough to live independently.34 35 36
Child development specialists have documented how young children and teenagers lack the critical thinking skills and emotional maturity to exercise good judgment when assessing risks.37 38 39 40 Pre-adolescents are more susceptible to pressure from peers and authority figures.41 42 43 44
Doctors and Other Vaccine Administrators Have No Liability for Vaccine Injuries and Deaths
Doctors are the ultimate authority figures in our society today, and many are serving as authoritarian implementers of one-size-fits-all federal vaccine policies and state vaccine mandates.45 46 Like vaccine manufacturers, doctors and other persons who administer vaccines cannot be held liable in civil court when a child dies or is injured.47 Congress passed special legislation in 2020 to make sure that doctors or anyone else who administers a Covid-19 vaccine cannot be sued.48
When the risks of vaccination turn out to be 100 percent for a child, it is the mother and father raising that child on a day-to-day basis who will be left with the life-long consequences - not the doctor who has been given the power to secretly persuade the child to take vaccines, and not the politician who voted to give doctors that power.
The DC Council sponsor of the bill entitled the "Minor Consent for Vaccinations Amendment Act" originally wanted doctors to be able to vaccinate children of any age - no matter how young - without the knowledge or consent of their parents. She argued that minors of any age can get an abortion in Washington, DC and get treated for a sexually transmitted disease or substance abuse without the knowledge or consent of their parents.49
She told Medscape Medical News that parents with "anti-science" beliefs were not vaccinating their children based on a "disproven belief" that vaccines may cause harm, which puts other people at "extreme risk" for disease.50
A dissenting DC City Council member countered with "Medical professionals and schools should not be permitted to coerce impressionable minors into procedures capable of causing injury or death behind their parents' back."51
DC Vaccine Concealment Law A Profound Betrayal of Public Trust
The Universal Declaration of Bioethics and Human Rights states that:
"The interests and welfare of the individual should have priority over the sole interest of science or society;" and "For persons who are not capable of exercising autonomy, special measures are to be taken to protect their rights and interests;" and "Any preventive, diagnostic and therapeutic medical intervention is only to be carried out with the prior, free and informed consent of the person concerned, based on adequate information."52
It is a profound betrayal of public trust for any city, state or federal government to strip parents of their God given right to protect their children from harm by allowing a doctor to give a child a pharmaceutical product without getting a parent's permission. Science is not perfect, doctors are not infallible, and pharmaceutical products like vaccines come with risks that can be greater for some individuals than others,53 54 55 which is why parents must retain the human right to exercise informed consent to medical risk taking on behalf of their minor children.
Will the vaccine concealment bill that is now law in Washington, DC be exported to your state next?
Take Action Today To Protect Parental Rights
If you want to protect parental and informed consent rights, register for the free online NVIC Advocacy Portal today and stay up to date on vaccine laws being proposed in your state so you can contact your legislators and take positive action.
Never be the one who has to say you did not do today what you could have done to change tomorrow.
It's your health. Your family. Your choice.
And our mission continues: No forced vaccination. Not in America.
2 Anderson A. These Endless Public Health Mandates Threaten American's Liberty. Heritage Foundation Mar. 15, 2021.
3 Weisberg L, Molnar P. With vaccination rates up and COVID-19 cases way down, California is poised to ditch masks and social distancing, but there are still some rules and protections in place as we navigate a new pandemic landscape. LaJolla Light June 14 2021.
4 Council of the District of Columbia. B23-0171-Minor Consent for Vaccination Amendment Act of 2019. (Effective from Mar. 16, 2021).
5 Al-Arshani S. Kids as young as 11 years old would be able to consent to vaccinations under a new bill proposed in Washington, DC. Business Insider Oct. 21, 2020.
6 Richardson D. DC Bill B23-0181 Allowing Children 11 Years Old and Older to Be Vaccinated Without Parental Knowledge or Consent Advances. The Vaccine Reaction Oct. 26, 2020.
7 Smith W. D.C. to Legalize Vaccination of 11-Year Olds Without Parental OK. National Review Nov. 5, 2020.
8 Turner M. DC Council to make final vote on bill that would allow minors to get vaccines without parental consent. WUSA-9 Nov. 12, 2020.
9 Austermuhle M. D.C. Activists Want Bowset to Veto Bill That Would Allow Minors to Consent to Vaccines. NPR Dec. 7, 2020.
10 Ault A. 11-Year-Olds Could Receive Vaccines Without Parental Consent in DC. Medscape Dec. 24, 2020.
11 McNeely M. Bill to Let 11-Year Olds Make Medical Decision: Will Congress Say No? Home School Legal Defense Association (HSLDA) Feb. 24, 2021.
12 Parentalrights.org. Breaking DC Update: Lee Attempts "Common Consent." Mar. 3, 2021.
13 FindLaw. Understanding Informed Consent and Your Rights as a Patient. June 6, 2018.
17 Austermuhle M. D.C. Activists Want Bowser to Veto Bill That Would Allow Minors to Consent to Vaccines. NPR Dec. 7, 2020.
18 CDC. Contraindications and precautions to commonly used vaccines. May 4, 2021.
19 CDC. COVID-19 Vaccines: Summary Documents for Interim Clinical Considerations. June 1, 2021.
21 Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA). National Childhood Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. June 2021.
22 Ault A. 11-Year-Olds Could Receive Vaccines Without Parental Consent in DC. Medscape Dec. 24, 2020.
23 English A, Shaw FE, McCauley MM et al. Legal Basis of Consent for Health Care and Vaccination for Adolescents. Pediatrics 2008; 121 (Supplement 1): S85-S87.
24 42 U.S.C. United States Code, 2016 edition. Title 42 - The Public Health and Welfare Chapter 6A - Public Health Service. Subchapter XIX - Vaccines. Part 2 - National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Subpart c - ASSURING A SAFER CHILDHOOD VACCINATION PROGRAM IN THE UNITED STATES. Sec. 300aa-26. Vaccine information.
25 CDC. Vaccine Information Statements (VISs): Required Use. July 28, 2020.
26 42 U.S.C. United States Code, 2016 edition. Title 42 - The Public Health and Welfare Chapter 6A - Public Health Service. Subchapter XIX - Vaccines. Part 2 - National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. Subpart c - ASSURING A SAFER CHILDHOOD VACCINATION PROGRAM IN THE UNITED STATED STATES Sec. 300aa-25. Recording and reporting of information.
28 Fisher BL. DIY If Your Doctor Won't Report Vaccine Reactions to VAERS. NVIC Newsletter June 2, 2021.
29 Health Resources Services Administration (HRSA). National Childhood Vaccine Injury Compensation Program. VICP Data & Statistics June 2021. Who Can File A Petition and Filing Deadlines.
32 Encyclopedia.com. Nuremberg Code Establishes the Principle of Informed Consent.
35 Findlaw. How Long Do Parents' Legal Obligations to Their Children Continue? Nov. 17, 2018.
36 Fisher BL. The Moral Right to Conscientious, Philosophical and Personal Belief Exemption to Vaccination. Oral and referenced presentation to the National Vaccine Advisory Committee May 2, 1997.
37 Kelley AE, Schochet T, Landry CF. Risk taking and novelty seeking in adolescence: introduction to part I. Ann NY Acad Sci 2004; 1021-1032.
38 Steinberg L. Cognitive and affective development in adolescence. Trends Cogn Sci 2005; 9(2): 69-74.
42 Knoll LJ, Magis-Weinberg L, Speekenrbrink M et al. Social Influence on Risk Perception During Adolescence. Psychological Science May 25, 2015.
43 Koleva G. Authoritarian Doctors, Timid Patients, and a Health Care Gridlock. Forbes May 29, 2012.
44 Heath S. Understanding the Power Hierarchy in Patient-Provider Relationships. Patient EngagementHIT July 23, 2019.
45 Koleva G. Authoritarian Doctors, Timid Patients, and a Health Care Gridlock. Forbes May 29, 2012.
47 NVIC. National Vaccine Information Center Cites "Betrayal" of Consumers by US Supreme Court Giving Total Liability Shield to Big Pharma. Businesswire Feb. 23, 2011.
48 Fisher BL, Parpia R. 2005 PREP Act and 1986 Act Shield Vaccine Manufacturers from Liability. The Vaccine Reaction Aug. 10, 2020.
49 Ault A. 11-Year-Olds Could Receive Vaccines Without Parental Consent in DC. Medscape Dec. 24, 2020.
52 United Nations Education, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO). Universal Declaration on Bioethics and Human Rights. Oct 19, 2005.
53 Institute of Medicine Committee to Review Adverse Effects of Vaccines. Evaluation of Biologic Mechanisms of Adverse Effects: Increased Susceptibility. Chapter 3 (p. 82). Washington, D.C. The National Academies Press 2012.
55 Fisher BL. Why Is Informed Consent to Vaccination a Human Right? National Vaccine Information Center June 28, 2017.