Texas governor Rick Perry will most likely face some stiff opposition for the use of his executive order last week. He bypassed the state legislature to make Texas the first state to require school aged girls to be vaccinated against a sexually transmitted virus known as HPV (human papillomavirus).
The vaccine being promoted is called ‘Gardasil’ made by Merk & Co., a new vaccine that claims to block four common strains of the HPV virus. Merk says that ‘Gardasil’ prevents 99 percent of infections by two HPV stains that cause about 70 percent of cervical cancer and two strains that cause most genital warts.
The grim statistics estimate that around 9,700 new cases of cervical cancer will be diagnosed this year in the United States resulting in about 3,700 deaths.
Starting in the fall of 2008 girls as young as 11 to 12 entering the sixth grade will be required to receive ‘Gardasil’ in Texas. This mandate is effective until Perry or a successor repeals it. The legislature has no authority to change it.
Legislative aids and parent advocacy groups against vaccinations are looking for ways around this executive order. Their main cause for concern is in the interfering of their rights as parents to chose medical decisions for their children. Current Texas law allows parents to opt out of inoculations by filing an affidavit objecting to vaccinations on religious or philosophical reasons.
The success Merk & Co. has had in Texas has them using heavy lobbying tactics by continuing these bankrolling efforts to get other states to pass laws like the one in Texas.
Three doses at a cost of $120.00 each for a total cost of $360.00 to inoculate for this viral infection has many doctors refusing to even stock it. They are saying problems with insurance companies reimbursing them is totally inadequate and they are fed up with rising vaccine prices.