Argentina is taking the anti-vaccine movement — and the reappearance of eradicated illnesses — seriously.
The South American country recently approved a new law, 22.909, that declares vaccination as a national interest and understands immunization as a social good, according to the Argentine newspaper PERFIL.
According to the new law: “Vaccination is of national interest and we understand that research, epidemiological surveillance, decision making based on evidence, acquisition, storage, distribution and provision of vaccines, ensuring the cold chain, as well as its production, is highly important."
Now vaccines and their application are free and mandatory, totally provided by the government in all stages of life. Being vaccinated will be necessary and required for procedures such as entry and exit of the school system every year, processing or renewal of ID, passports, residence, medical procedures for work, prenuptial certificates, and driver's licenses, as well as for the processing of family allowances.
Why is vaccination now mandatory? It’s an obligation that the government created for the benefit of citizens and the community to prevent the spread of serious diseases, according to the law.
Pablo Yedlin, the law’s author, is a pediatrician and deputy for the province of Tucumán. Yedlin was worried about the reappearance of diseases, like measles, that were already eradicated and decided to take action.
"Argentina now has a fundamental tool to prevent infectious diseases through vaccines. Undoubtedly, this law will expand and improve vaccination as a public policy for the control and prevention of vaccine-preventable diseases," said Lautaro de Vedia, president of SADI, Sociedad Argentina de Pediatría, to PERFIL.
According to INFOBAE newspaper, “it will not be necessary to have the vaccines to do certain customs and procedures, but it is important that adults understand that it will be required to have certain vaccines such as Hepatitis B or diphtheria and tetanus.”
You can find more information about this new vaccine law here.