This article incorrectly says there has been no monitoring for two years, it has actually been since 1986 when vaccine companies were given immunity from prosecution.
West Virginia State Delegate Chanda Adkins, R-Raleigh, and Sen. Patricia Rucker, R-Jefferson, contacted state health officials to voice concerns about the state’s vaccine monitoring system after learning the federal Department of Health and Human Services hasn’t submitted required reports on vaccine safety to Congress the last two years.
In a July 18 letter to the state DHHR, Adkins and Rucker asked DHHR officials to provide the state Legislature evidence it’s performing due diligence on vaccine safety reporting and adverse event monitoring in light of the federal DHHS’s admission that it has not been monitoring vaccines.
The letter was sent to Bill Crouch, secretary of the state Department of Health and Human Resources, Rahul Gupta, state health officer and commissioner of the Bureau for Public Health and Gov. Jim Justice.
DHHR officials did not respond to a request for comment Tuesday.
Rucker and Adkins wrote to the DHHR after reading in a July 6 U.S. District Court filing that HHS officials acknowledged it had not submitted vaccine reports. The HHS was supposed to provide Congress a vaccine report every two years, according to the National Childhood Vaccine Injury Act of 1986.
“While this lawsuit against HHS does not show that there have been no safety studies performed on vaccine products, it reveals that HHS has not fulfilled its obligation to be the watchdog for this industry, ensuring improvements are being made and the products being mandated for our children are unequivocally safe,” according to the letter.
“This letter serves as a notice to the West Virginia DHHR public health officials and the West Virginia Governor’s office that adequate oversight has not been performed by the federal government as shown by the attached lawsuit,” according to the letter
The legislators also questioned whether the state should still require mandatory vaccinations for school children if the federal government cannot provide states an accurate vaccination report base to rely on, Rucker said.
Children in West Virginia are mandated by state code to receive several of the Centers for Disease Control recommended vaccinations to enter daycare and pre-k, and other vaccinations required for student admittance to public, private or parochial school.
The legislators are asking the DHHR to create an independent “vaccine safety task force” to oversee vaccine safety.
The letters also asks Justice to call during the state’s special legislative session a special revision to West Virginia code 16-3-4, adding an exemption from mandatory childhood vaccination “until further documentation and data can show that our current vaccination program is not creating harm to our most precious investment, our children.”
Source: The Journal, July 2018.