In the United States, measles vaccines are not federally mandated; however, in Germany, Jens Spahn, the health minister, is proposing a fine of nearly $2,800 to parents who fail to get their children vaccinated.
Jens Spahn said in an interview printed Sunday with a German weekly newspaper, “Parents should pay a maximum of 2,500 euros if they are unable to prove that their children have received the shot.” That’s around $2,790.
The country’s health minister is also seeking to ban children, who are not immunized against measles, from attending daycare to protect vulnerable groups that are unable to be immunized due to age or serious medical complications.
However, the cabinet has not yet discussed Spahn’s proposal and it is unclear whether it will get the approval.
Last week, Spahn had concerns that immunization rates have not risen much in the nation despite educational campaigns.
He added, “Therefore, the measles vaccination in kindergarten and school must be mandatory. For those who vaccinate not only protect themselves but also the community. Ninety-five percent of the population must be vaccinated against measles so that this highly contagious viral disease can be eradicated. That’s our goal.”
According to the latest monthly report by the European Centre for Disease Prevention and Control (ECDC) that was released in April, more than 160 cases were reported in Germany within the first two months of 2019. And most cases reported in Europe were seen in Italy, France, Greece, and Romania since March 2018.
In the United States, the current measles outbreak has been on the rise. The U.S. CDC reported 704 confirmed measles cases as of April 27, which was once declared eliminated in 2000. In February, soon-to-be-ex FDA Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, said, “The federal government may take action if the spread continues and states don’t tighten vaccine exemptions.”