Mandating vaccination: What counts as a "mandate" in public health and when should they be used?

American Journal of Bioethics 7 (12):2 – 6 (2007)
Recent arguments over whether certain public health interventions should be mandatory raise questions about what counts as a "mandate." A mandate is not the same as a mere recommendation or the standard of practice. At minimum, a mandate should require an active opt-out and there should be some penalty for refusing to abide by it. Over-loose use of the term "mandate" and the easing of opt-out provisions could eventually pose a risk to the gains that truly mandatory public health interventions, such as childhood vaccines, have provided over the last 50 years. Already, confusion about what counts as a mandate, and about what criteria should be used to determine when a public health intervention should be implemented as a mandate, has led to some inappropriate public policy decisions. For instance, by any reasonable criteria, the yearly influenza vaccine should be mandatory for health care workers. To enforce this mandate, those who refuse vaccination should be required to sign a waiver, and patients - especially those at high risk from flu - should be informed when they receive care from unvaccinated practitioners.
Keywords No keywords specified (fix it)
Categories (categorize this paper)
 Save to my reading list
Follow the author(s)
My bibliography
Export citation
Find it on Scholar
Edit this record
Mark as duplicate
Revision history Request removal from index
Download options
PhilPapers Archive

Upload a copy of this paper     Check publisher's policy on self-archival     Papers currently archived: 9,351
External links
  • Through your library Configure
    References found in this work BETA

    No references found.

    Citations of this work BETA
    Similar books and articles

    Monthly downloads

    Added to index


    Total downloads

    26 ( #56,514 of 1,088,389 )

    Recent downloads (6 months)

    1 ( #69,601 of 1,088,389 )

    How can I increase my downloads?

    My notes
    Sign in to use this feature

    Start a new thread
    There  are no threads in this forum
    Nothing in this forum yet.