Bill to expand immunization exemptions heard by committee

TOPEKA — Individual rights collided with the rights of society in a hearing Wednesday over whether to allow more children to bypass required immunizations.

Monica DeGraffenreid of Wichita said parents should be allowed to decide whether their children should be vaccinated.

“We are well-educated and well-informed adults,” DeGraffenreid said to the House Health and Human Services Committee during a standing-room-only hearing. “We’re not asking for the world. We are simply asking for our parental rights to be respected,” she said.

State law requires children to be immunized against a number of diseases, such as chicken pox, measles, mumps and rubella, to be enrolled in school. The law allows exemptions for religious or medical reasons.

Under House Bill 2094, a parent or guardian would be allowed to exempt their child for reasons of conscience or personal belief.

Supporters of the bill said that the religious exemption was too narrow and unfair.

“In essence, if I do not belong to a religious denomination, I am apparently unworthy of an exemption,” said Erik Leon, a pharmacist from Topeka.

Several parents said they weren’t against all vaccinations but after doing research they determined the risk of some vaccines outweighed the benefits. They want the power to chose which ones their child receives.

Others testified that vaccines contained dangerous levels of metals and were actually doing more harm than good.

But several health care professionals said allowing more exemptions would result in more illnesses, some of which could be fatal and put at risk children who haven’t received a vaccination yet because they are too young.

Dr. William Keough, a pediatrician at Kansas University Hospital, said, “Vaccines are safe. The diseases that vaccines prevent cause death.”

State Epidemiologist Charles Hunt said immunizations are one of the most successful strategies in public health. He said studies show that states that have widened exemptions have seen an increase in the instances of preventable diseases. Representatives of the Kansas Association of Local Health Departments also testified against the bill.

Committee Chairwoman Brenda Landwehr, R-Wichita, said she did not support the bill.

“I remember the days of polio,” she said.

The committee took no action on the measure.

Tagged: Immunization, Legislature


lweinmaster 2 years, 3 months ago

read page 11 of the Tripedia label where it lists AUTISM as a potential adverse effect in post marketing data. How much "evidence" do you need to link vaccines with AUTISM when it is listed right on the label? And the fact that we have thousands of parents saying their children were injured? Read it for yourself:

Adverse events reported during post-approval use of Tripedia vaccine include idiopathic thrombocytopenic purpura, SIDS, anaphylactic reaction, cellulitis, autism, convulsion/grand mal convulsion, encephalopathy, hypotonia, neuropathy, somnolence and apnea. Events were included in this list because of the seriousness or frequency of reporting.

Read more here:


guess_again 2 years, 3 months ago

L. Weinmaster and her friends used to argue on and on and on that Thimerisol created autism.

Now, years later, the study which was the basis for this has been exposed as totally fraudulent (as in made up data), they have notched their tiller a few degrees, but that is all.

As yeoman2 indicates above, the ability to cut and past a single Pubmed abstract does not make one scientifically literate. And a single abstract weighed against the hundred of thousands of actual medical papers published does not mean much of anything by itself.

The "anti-vaccine" movement has been successful enough that California is now seeing infective clusters of outbreaks of pertusis (whooping cough). That never used to happen.

Whooping cough can and will kill children.

Can there be improvements to vaccines? Sure. But the conclusions and junk science being advocated by some above is just idiotic, and tragic.


nomorebush 2 years, 3 months ago

save $$$$$$$$$ on vaccines -more dead -fewer people


Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 years, 3 months ago

“We are well-educated and well-informed adults,” DeGraffenreid said"

Well, let me be the first to opt out of this group that Ms DeGrafenreid noted as "we". I serriously would debate this statement.

It amuses me to note all the undocumented, extended and obfuscated medical jargon that has been presented above in an effort to support this foolishness. I am sure that the 99% of readers who are not well-informed as to lofty medical verbage can make any sense or useful meaning of the cut and pasted text. It never seems to amaze me that the lengths that some opinionated people will explore to verify their thinly-disguised hatred of government policy and society's safety.


kochmoney 2 years, 3 months ago

Sure. Anyone can decided that they don't want their kids to be immunized, but by making that decision, they should also be opting to quarantine their children for our safety. The only kids who should be allowed in public schools without vaccines are those who can't have them for health reasons.


peartree 2 years, 3 months ago

Vaccines work when everyone participates, it's called herd immunity. Immunizations do not mean you are 100% protected, but when almost everyone has a significantly reduced risk, the community immunity protects those whose immune deficiencies preclude them from them from receiving vaccinations.

Yes, for some vaccinations the virus can be shed by those who have received them. Non-immunized people can pick these up and develop mild immunity, too. Because these people have reduced immunity, if they come into contact with the actual disease, they can partially fend off the virus. This is the perfect situation for the virus to mutate in that person's body into a more dangerous, vaccine-resistant form.

Therefore, there are two ways non-vaccinated people are putting the rest of the population at risk. The herd immunity (which has saved countless lives) becomes less effective, and the non-immunized become petri dishes for more virulent strains.

This is about numbers. Vaccines are not perfect, but they are 99.9% safe, and the alternative is horrifying. Ask your grandparents or go to a third world country.


Fred Whitehead Jr. 2 years, 3 months ago

this red herring issue has been debated and hashed out many times before. It is a dead issue in my opinion. There had always been obstinant and ignorant people who have childern and who hate the government and are willing to hazard their families due to their stupid and outlandish opinions. There should not even be any exceptions for religion, either. Religiious ferver has been used for many centuries for one group of people to imagine themselves as "believers" in some sort of diety with no visible means of support and who feel this gives them the right to overpower and kill others who do not believe in their religious fantasies. Common sense dictates that this group of malcontents be ignored and that the current immunization laws confirmed and enforced. We cannot survive as a society if the extremists and idiots are allowed to dictate policy.


Keith Richards 2 years, 3 months ago

Vaccine benefits far outweigh the risks. Herd immunity is a good thing. Period.


lweinmaster 2 years, 3 months ago


Apoptosis. 2012 Jan 17. [Epub ahead of print]

Hepatitis B vaccine induces apoptotic death in Hepa1-6 cells.

Hamza H, Cao J, Li X, Li C, Zhu M, Zhao S.


Key Lab of Agricultural Animal Genetics, Breeding, and Reproduction of Ministry of Education, College of Animal Science and Technology, Huazhong Agricultural University, Wuhan, 430070, People's Republic of China,


Vaccines can have adverse side-effects, and these are predominantly associated with the inclusion of chemical additives such as aluminum hydroxide adjuvant. The objective of this study was to establish an in vitro model system amenable to mechanistic investigations of cytotoxicity induced by hepatitis B vaccine, and to investigate the mechanisms of vaccine-induced cell death. The mouse liver hepatoma cell line Hepa1-6 was treated with two doses of adjuvanted (aluminium hydroxide) hepatitis B vaccine (0.5 and 1 μg protein per ml) and cell integrity was measured after 24, 48 and 72 h. Hepatitis B vaccine exposure increased cell apoptosis as detected by flow cytometry and TUNEL assay. Vaccine exposure was accompanied by significant increases in the levels of activated caspase 3, a key effector caspase in the apoptosis cascade. Early transcriptional events were detected by qRT-PCR. We report that hepatitis B vaccine exposure resulted in significant upregulation of the key genes encoding caspase 7, caspase 9, Inhibitor caspase-activated DNase (ICAD), Rho-associated coiled-coil containing protein kinase 1 (ROCK-1), and Apoptotic protease activating factor 1 (Apaf-1). Upregulation of cleaved caspase 3,7 were detected by western blot in addition to Apaf-1 and caspase 9 expressions argues that cell death takes place via the intrinsic apoptotic pathway in which release of cytochrome c from the mitochondria triggers the assembly of a caspase activation complex. We conclude that exposure of Hepa1-6 cells to a low dose of adjuvanted hepatitis B vaccine leads to loss of mitochondrial integrity, apoptosis induction, and cell death, apoptosis effect was observed also in C2C12 mouse myoblast cell line after treated with low dose of vaccine (0.3, 0.1, 0.05 μg/ml). In addition In vivo apoptotic effect of hepatitis B vaccine was observed in mouse liver.

PMID: 22249285 [PubMed - as supplied by publisher]

LinkOut - more resources


nevermind 2 years, 3 months ago

I don't want my kids going to school with a bunch of kids how do not have their immunizations. Why do they get to put my kids indanger...Keep your kids home!!!!


toe 2 years, 3 months ago

You should not be able to have children without a permit.


180mom 2 years, 3 months ago

A Lerner1,2⇓ 1Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition Unit, Carmel Medical Center, Haifa, Israel 2B. Rappaport School of Medicine, Technion-Israel Institute of Technology, Haifa, Israel Professor Aaron Lerner, Pediatric Gastroenterology and Nutrition Unit, Carmel Medical Center, 7 Michael Street, Haifa, 34362, Israel Email: Abstract

"Alum (AlK(SO4)2) is an adjuvant commonly utilized in vaccines, and is a ubiquitous element used extensively in contemporary life. Food, air, water, waste, the earth’s surface, and pharmaceuticals all represent pathways of aluminum (Al) exposure. Crohn's disease (CD) is a chronic relapsing intestinal inflammation in genetically susceptible individuals and is caused by yet unidentified environmental factors. Al is a potential factor for the induction of inflammation in CD, and its immune activities share many characteristics with the immune pathology of CD: many luminal bacterial or dietary compounds can be adsorbed to the metal surface and induce Th1 profile cytokines, shared cytokines/chemokines, co-stimulatory molecules, and intracellular pathways and stress-related molecular expression enhancement, affecting intestinal macrobiota, trans-mural granuloma formation, and colitis induction in an animal CD model. The inflammasome plays a central role in Al mode of action and in CD pathophysiology. It is suggested that Al adjuvant activity can fit between the aberrations of innate and adaptive immune responses occurring in CD. The CD mucosa is confronted with numerous inappropriate bacterial components adsorbed on the Al compound surface, constituting a pro-inflammatory supra-adjuvant. Al fits the diagnostic criteria of the newly described autoimmune/inflammatory syndrome induced by adjuvants. If a cause and effect relationship can be established, the consequences will greatly impact public health and CD prevention and management."


180mom 2 years, 3 months ago

Mechanisms of aluminum adjuvant toxicity and autoimmunity in pediatric populations. Tomljenovic L, Shaw C. Source 1Neural Dynamics Research Group, Department of Ophthalmology and Visual Sciences, University of British Columbia, Vancouver, BC, Canada. Abstract "Immune challenges during early development, including those vaccine-induced, can lead to permanent detrimental alterations of the brain and immune function. Experimental evidence also shows that simultaneous administration of as little as two to three immune adjuvants can overcome genetic resistance to autoimmunity. In some developed countries, by the time children are 4 to 6 years old, they will have received a total of 126 antigenic compounds along with high amounts of aluminum (Al) adjuvants through routine vaccinations. According to the US Food and Drug Administration, safety assessments for vaccines have often not included appropriate toxicity studies because vaccines have not been viewed as inherently toxic. Taken together, these observations raise plausible concerns about the overall safety of current childhood vaccination programs. When assessing adjuvant toxicity in children, several key points ought to be considered: (i) infants and children should not be viewed as "small adults" with regard to toxicological risk as their unique physiology makes them much more vulnerable to toxic insults; (ii) in adult humans Al vaccine adjuvants have been linked to a variety of serious autoimmune and inflammatory conditions (i.e., "ASIA"), yet children are regularly exposed to much higher amounts of Al from vaccines than adults; (iii) it is often assumed that peripheral immune responses do not affect brain function. However, it is now clearly established that there is a bidirectional neuro-immune cross-talk that plays crucial roles in immunoregulation as well as brain function. In turn, perturbations of the neuro-immune axis have been demonstrated in many autoimmune diseases encompassed in "ASIA" and are thought to be driven by a hyperactive immune response; and (iv) the same components of the neuro-immune axis that play key roles in brain development and immune function are heavily targeted by Al adjuvants. In summary, research evidence shows that increasing concerns about current vaccination practices may indeed be warranted. Because children may be most at risk of vaccine-induced complications, a rigorous evaluation of the vaccine-related adverse health impacts in the pediatric population is urgently needed."


lweinmaster 2 years, 3 months ago

The only polio in the US since 1964 have been caused by the vaccines. Polio was a horrible disease that 100% of the population was exposed to but only 1% pf the population contracted the disease. Vaccines are not responsible for curing disease sanitation, clean water, and nutritionhas caused the decrease in disease.. If vaccines were so effective why do we have the sickest generation of children? With the use of vaccines have we exchanged the health of our children for life long chronic illness? We have the highest vaccine rate in the world and one of the highest infant mortality rates. When I grew up we all had both measles, chicken pox and mumps. We had immunity developed naturally from the disease. Vaccines don't give immunity. Vaccines Safety Crimes against humanity


TMSOL_Doc 2 years, 3 months ago

When did we take parents rights away in the USA? I would suggest you read a package insert before making your comments. Vaccines have adjuvents that activate the immune system, sometimes over activating the body causing it to attack its immune system. I have asked many doctors if they have read a package insert and they never answer the question. One needs to only look as far as the government data base Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (Vaers) for the truth about vaccine safety. Vaccine have only been safety tested when given a single vaccine at a time to healthy childrens. These children are only followed for a couple of weeks for reactions.


dcap 2 years, 3 months ago

Great news that the house committee did not act on this bill, and that Rep. Landwehr is opposed to it! The state should go one further and make it more difficult for these people to endanger their children by not having them immunized. They should strengthen the requirements for religious exceptions, maybe by asking for a sworn affidavit from a clergy member swearing that they accept that the child could die from polio. The state should also crack down on doctors who violate their Hippocratic oath by giving parents medical exemptions when they are not warranted.


The_Original_Bob 2 years, 3 months ago

"“In essence, if I do not belong to a religious denomination, I am apparently unworthy of an exemption,” said Erik Leon, a pharmacist from Topeka."

A pharmacist said that? She must be looking at down the road profits to treat preventable diseases.

"Others testified that vaccines contained dangerous levels of metals and were actually doing more harm than good."

How many studies have disproved this dumb assertion?


ksjayhawk74 2 years, 3 months ago

Shouldn't a parent have the right to let their child be exposed to polio? No.

A parent should not be able to make decisions that have clear negative effects on the health of a child.

Should a parent be able to not feed their child if they believe that eating food is bad for them?


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