July 2012 
Volume 42  Number 7
Pages 10 - 10
  PDF Version Available!

The parents of a young child won't consent to most of the childhood vaccinations recommended by the CDC. The healthcare provider in the private pediatric practice where I work says he'll refuse to continue caring for this child unless she's fully vaccinated due to the risk that she might transmit disease to other children in the waiting room. I'm worried that this child won't get the medical care she needs. Can the healthcare provider refuse to treat her, legally and ethically?-A.C., N.Y.Pediatric healthcare providers have the right to discharge patients from their practice for vaccine refusal as long as they provide due notice of the change and their actions don't contradict existing law or agency policy.1 Yet the CDC clearly states that refusal to care for patients without vaccines isn't the best public health strategy.2Refusal to vaccinate has become a hot issue as more parents resist vaccinating their children. In one study, just over 80% of children had completed the prescribed immunization

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