The Iowa House has passed a bill that establishes new rules for protecting public health during a disaster. If the bill becomes law, health care officials would have more authority to investigate and control outbreaks, and “disaster medical assistance teams” could order Iowans to undergo physical exams or be quarantined. Vaccinations could be recommended but wouldn’t be mandatory. That’s important to Representative Pat Murphy, a democrat from Dubuque because he doesn’t want to see small pox vaccinations become mandatory. Murphy tried but failed to guarantee that smallpox vaccinations will never become mandatory. Murphy wants to do something to ensure workers don’t suffer reprisals for refusing to take a smallpox vaccination.
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