Text: S.Res.165 — 116th Congress (2019-2020)All Information (Except Text)

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Agreed to Senate (04/11/2019)

[Congressional Bills 116th Congress]
[From the U.S. Government Publishing Office]
[S. Res. 165 Agreed to Senate (ATS)]


  1st Session
S. RES. 165

  Recognizing the importance of vaccinations and immunizations in the 
                             United States.



                             April 11, 2019

    Ms. Duckworth (for herself, Mrs. Blackburn, Mr. Alexander, Mrs. 
Feinstein, Mr. Reed, Mr. Schumer, Mr. Cornyn, Mr. Brown, Ms. Klobuchar, 
 Mr. Whitehouse, Mr. Barrasso, Mr. Merkley, Mr. Coons, Mr. Blumenthal, 
  Ms. Baldwin, Mr. King, Mr. Peters, Mr. Cassidy, and Mr. Van Hollen) 
 submitted the following resolution; which was considered and agreed to



  Recognizing the importance of vaccinations and immunizations in the 
                             United States.

Whereas the contributions of Louis Pasteur and Edward Jenner to the discovery of 
        the principles of vaccinology are among the most consequential health 
        findings in human history;
Whereas a vaccine made possible the eradication of smallpox, saving millions of 
Whereas, because of the vaccine for polio, a highly infectious disease caused by 
        the poliovirus, the international community--

    (1) has eliminated polio in all but 3 countries; and

    (2) has saved an estimated 15,000 Americans from paralysis annually;

Whereas vaccines have dramatically reduced the spread of debilitating and 
        potentially life-threatening diseases, including--

    (1) diphtheria;

    (2) tetanus;

    (3) measles;

    (4) mumps; and

    (5) rubella;

Whereas vaccines have prevented the spread of infectious and potentially fatal 
        diseases, including--

    (1) chickenpox;

    (2) shingles;

    (3) influenza;

    (4) hepatitis A;

    (5) hepatitis B;

    (6) meningococcal disease;

    (7) pneumococcal disease;

    (8) rotavirus;

    (9) pertussis (also known as ``whooping cough''); and

    (10) meningitis;

Whereas the vaccine-preventable human papillomavirus (also known as ``HPV'') is 
        known to cause certain types of cancer;
Whereas the scientific and medical communities are in overwhelming consensus 
        that vaccines are effective and safe;
Whereas misinformation about vaccine safety and the dissemination of unfounded 
        and debunked theories about the dangers of vaccinations pose a great 
        risk to public health;
Whereas scientifically sound education and outreach campaigns about the 
        importance of vaccination and immunization are fundamental for a well-
        informed public;
Whereas communities with low vaccination rates compromise, in a particular way, 
        the health and livelihood of--

    (1) infants;

    (2) young children;

    (3) seniors;

    (4) individuals with immunodeficiency disorders; and

    (5) individuals with weakened or compromised immune systems, including 
individuals taking medication that affects the immune system, such as 
medications to treat cancer;

Whereas substantial research has shown that vaccination is a highly cost-
        effective form of preventive medicine;
Whereas the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (referred to in this 
        preamble as the ``CDC'') estimates that, between 1994 and 2013, 
        vaccinations saved nearly $295,000,000,000 in direct costs and 
        $1,380,000,000,000 in total societal costs in the United States;
Whereas vaccines in the United States--

    (1) undergo extensive safety and efficacy testing before licensure by 
the Food and Drug Administration; and

    (2) are continually monitored for adverse events;

Whereas there are 4 post-marketing surveillance systems in the United States 
        tracking adverse events after vaccination;
Whereas the CDC estimates that--

    (1) vaccinations will prevent more than 21,000,000 hospitalizations and 
732,000 deaths among children born between 1994 and 2013; and

    (2) vaccines save the lives of an estimated 2,500,000 children under 
age 5 each year;

Whereas 1 in 5 children worldwide lack access to common vaccines and, as a 
        result, an estimated 1,500,000 people die each year from vaccine-
        preventable diseases or complications of vaccine-preventable diseases, 
        such as diarrhea and pneumonia;
Whereas strong investments in biomedical research to improve existing vaccines 
        and develop many more life-saving vaccines are beneficial to all people;
Whereas a robust immunization infrastructure, by preventing and isolating 
        outbreaks of infectious diseases at the source, is essential to the 
        public health and well-being of the people of the United States;
Whereas each State determines the vaccination requirements for the people of 
        that State;
Whereas State vaccination requirements are informed by recommendations approved 
        by the CDC and developed by the Advisory Committee on Immunization 
Whereas encouraging high vaccination rates and promoting vaccine confidence in 
        the United States protects the people of the United States from 
        contracting and spreading vaccine-preventable diseases;
Whereas the World Health Organization (referred to in this preamble as the 
        ``WHO'') recently identified vaccine hesitancy as a health threat for 
Whereas addressing the many factors that contribute to vaccine hesitancy is 
        crucial to increasing vaccination rates and improving or achieving herd 
Whereas routine and up-to-date vaccination is the most effective method 
        available to prevent the transmission of potentially fatal infectious 
        diseases; and
Whereas the United States has been a leader in promoting vaccinations around the 
        world through--

    (1) the United States Agency for International Development;

    (2) the CDC;

    (3) Gavi, the Vaccine Alliance;

    (4) the Global Polio Eradication Initiative;

    (5) the United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund 
(commonly known as ``UNICEF'');

    (6) the WHO; and

    (7) many other multilateral and nongovernmental organizations: Now, 
therefore, be it

    Resolved, That the Senate--
            (1) commends the international community, global and 
        domestic health organizations, the private sector, school and 
        community leaders, and faith-based organizations for their 
        tireless work and immense contributions to bolstering global 
        and domestic health through vaccination;
            (2) affirms that vaccines and immunizations save lives and 
        are essential to maintain--
                    (A) the public health; and
                    (B) the economic and national security of the 
                United States;
            (3) recognizes that--
                    (A) low vaccination rates or the lack of 
                vaccination can create an environment in which a public 
                health crisis could emerge;
                    (B) vaccines--
                            (i) are approved by the Food and Drug 
                        Administration (referred to in this resolving 
                        clause as the ``FDA'') as safe and effective; 
                            (ii) meet the gold standard of safety 
                        established by the FDA; and
                    (C) the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 
                advises medical providers and parents in the United 
                States that the benefits of currently recommended 
                vaccines greatly outweigh the risks of those vaccines;
            (4) encourages a continued commitment to biomedical 
                    (A) to improve vaccines; and
                    (B) to develop new vaccines against other 
                infectious and fatal diseases; and
            (5) urges all people, in consultation with their health 
        care providers, to follow the scientific evidence and consensus 
        of medical experts in favor of timely vaccinations to protect--
                    (A) the individual vaccinated; and
                    (B) the children, family, and community of the 
                individual vaccinated.

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