Majority Want Compulsory Vaccinations

William JordanUS Elections Editor
April 11, 2013, 8:58 AM GMT+0

Following a measles outbreak in Wales, new YouGov research reveals majority support for making vaccinations compulsory

An American measles doctor has called on Britain to follow the United States' lead and make vaccinations like the MMR injection, which is a combined vaccination against Measles, Mumps and Rubella, mandatory. The doctor told BBC's Newsnight last night that it was "unconscionable" that children should be suffering from measles today.

55% of Britons say it should be "legally compulsory" that parents have their children get the MMR injection, including 62% of those from the Midlands and Wales. 28% per cent oppose the idea nationwide.

A recent outbreak of measles in Wales has re-ignited the debate over vaccines years after research in the late 1990s created a health scare when it falsely linked use of the vaccine to autism. Meanwhile, Public Health Wales estimates that more than 6,000 children in the county of Swansea remain unvaccinated.

Views about the vaccine have shifted since the years immediately following the autism scare. The latest YouGov research suggests more than twice as many (26%) now think the MMR jab is "completely safe" than the 12% that thought so when asked about it after key revelations arose discrediting the autism claims in February 2004. Overall, 88% of British adults think the injection is "safe", up from 82% nine years ago.

See the full poll results

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