Protect New Hampshire's Kids from Preventable Disease

This petition made change with 470 supporters!

Like the Zika virus in the news today, Rubella is usually a mild virus that can have a devastating effect on a developing baby. I know first-hand, because our daughter was infected during my pregnancy in 1971.

Similar to Zika-infected mothers today, I was pregnant before the "MMR" vaccine was available. My exposure to Rubella (or “German Measles”) resulted in major issues for my daughter. Christie is Autistic, has near complete hearing loss, and is both mentally challenged and visually impaired from the Rubella virus. She is one of the lucky ones. Many babies with her condition were not able to walk or control their bodily functions.

As New Hampshire “snow birds,” who now live here on a part-time basis after calling it home for many years, and as parents who know the value of vaccinations, we were upset by recent events in the Granite State that could make stories like Christie's more common.

We hope you'll agree that New Hampshire’s children deserve a modern state health department that is able to protect them from vaccine preventable diseases. Sadly, New Hampshire’s longstanding effort to activate a statewide immunization registry is in trouble. I hope you will sign this petition to help bring New Hampshire into the computerized 21st Century.

On March 18, 2016, fewer than a dozen New Hampshire state legislators convened a meeting of the Joint Legislative Committee on Administrative Rules (JL-CAR). This House and Senate committee is established to ensure state agencies are writing implementation plans that match the newly passed laws those rules address. One of the agenda items was the the NH Department of Health's plan to implement a modern, privacy-focused immunization registry.

With almost no publicity, this small group of legislators ignored the support of doctors, nurses, and scientists, and instead sided with a handful anti-vaccination advocates. JL-CAR’s members voted 5 to 4 to shoot down the state health department’s efforts -- threatening millions of state and federal dollars, but more importantly, indefinitely extending the time that New Hampshire’s kids will remain poorly protected by an arcane and wasteful paper system. Without your voice, New Hampshire might easily remain the only state in the United States to track childhood vaccinations through an antiquated system. 

Public Health leaders nationwide know that paper tracking systems cannot readily respond to an outbreak, require costly and time-consuming efforts to staff, and are limited in their ability to identify gaps in our common defense against costly vaccine preventable illness and disease. This is why every other state in the US left paper behind – some as many as 25 years ago. This is also why the CDC provided New Hampshire with a large federal grant to upgrade the state’s technology. New Hampshire may now lose both the funding and the technological leap forward those funds support.  

It is unlikely the state health department would continue to advance draft rules that are continually voted down, so today’s threat to the health of New Hampshire’s kids is real. If the Joint Committee’s 5-4 vote is upheld, a small group of anti-vaccination advocates will have stonewalled sound public policy and the state’s ability to protect citizens from vaccine preventable diseases. New Hampshire may also lose federal financial support, and the state’s long sought-after immunization registry will be delayed indefinitely.

Demand that the intent of New Hampshire's 1998 legislation to establish a modern state immunization registry finally be obtained. New Hampshire’s immunization leaders must be given the tools they need to protect the health of the children of New Hampshire. And because vaccine preventable diseases don’t stop at state borders, support of the Department’s proposed rules reaches far beyond both the Granite State and New England.

Just one more case like mine is one case too many. Let's bring New Hampshire up to the standard of every other state in the nation.

Turn on the immunization registry!

Today: N and A is counting on you

N and A Adam needs your help with “Petition: Protect NH Kids from Vaccine Preventable Disease”. Join N and A and 469 supporters today.