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State Bills Relating to Vaccines in Schools and Provider Scopes of Practice

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All 50 states and the District of Columbia require vaccinations for school entry. Since the emergence of the COVID-19 vaccine, a debate has emerged around compulsory vaccinations for school-age children and parental rights. In some states, COVID-19 vaccines became the newest battleground for anti-vaccine efforts more broadly, leading to the introduction of bills during the 2023 legislative session seeking to restrict the use of — or expand exemptions to — school requirements. At the same time, state legislatures continued to introduce bills expanding vaccination access by changing the scope of practice for providers like midwives, pharmacists, dentists and dental hygienists, and others to allow them to administer vaccinations. 

This longitudinal dataset captures legislation addressing school entry vaccination requirements, non-medical exemptions to school vaccination requirements, the reallocation of authority to determine vaccination requirements for schools, and expansions to provider scope of practice to administer vaccines between January 1, 2023, and May 22, 2023, in all 50 US states and the District of Columbia. 

This dataset was created in collaboration with the Association of State and Territorial Health Officials as a part of the Act for Public Health initiative. Act for Public Health provides direct support to public health departments and others through legal technical assistance, research, and resources to track litigation and legislation that impacts their ability to protect the communities they serve. Act for Public Health is a partnership that includes ChangeLab Solutions, the Public Health Law Center at Mitchell Hamline School of Law, the Network for Public Health Law, Public Health Law Watch, and the Center for Public Health Law Research at Temple University’s Beasley School of Law.