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Dear Chairman Basye and Members of the House Elementary & Secondary Education Committee:

As pediatricians, our job is not only to protect the well-being of children, but to promote and advance the health of all families. Each day we work with individual families to make informed decisions to ensure the children of Missouri are provided every opportunity possible to go to school and grow up to be productive citizens – and this starts with protecting families from disease and illness with vaccines during routine well child visits.

On behalf of the more than 1,000 physicians, trainees and pediatric provider members of the Missouri Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics, we implore you to protect the health and well-being of all  Missouri children by voting NO on HB37.

Simply put: vaccines are the safest, most effective tool families have to protect their child from harm. Terrible diseases like whooping cough and measles once cost the lives of millions each year, but today can be prevented by vaccination. Further, the use of childhood vaccinations helps protect the entire family, especially those most vulnerable like infants, cancer patients, immunosuppressed, elderly, and the unborn. 

We understand there is a great deal of misinformation and confusion around the safety of vaccines, which is why we work with families to reach a level of comfort and understanding throughout our treatment plan for their child, particularly for new parents in the earliest and most precious years of a child’s life. We know parents are coming to us from a position of love and care – and so do we. 

Finally, as professionals dedicated to the care and well-being of families, we work each day to protect the health of the entire community – and our first line of defense in completing this mission is ensuring the patients we serve are vaccinated from harmful diseases. 

We are asking you to consider the health of your communities, in addition to the protection of our most vulnerable asset, our children, by voting NO  on HB37. Help us keep kids healthy so they can stay in school and reach their potential as Missouri’s future.