Texas could host the nation’s next major fight over stricter requirements for immunizations as its rates of schoolchildren who refuse to get shots for non-medical reasons rises.
The number of Texas kindergarten through 12th grade students who reported filing conscientious exemptions for at least one immunization last school year increased 19-fold since 2003. It’s still less than 1 percent of enrolled students.
Texas is one of 18 states allowing philosophical exemptions to vaccines and some state lawmakers want to create a system where students who object to immunizations would have to opt out.
Currently, Texas makes parents “opt in” by approving vaccines.