Although numerous studies have already found that there is no causal relationship between vaccination and autism, Bill Posey [R-FL8] introduced this bill to direct the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to conduct another study on the relationship between vaccination and autism and other chronic or neurological conditions. The bill cites the simultaneous rise in rates of childhood developmental disorders, such as autism, and an increase in the number of immunizations given to children. He claims, but falsely, that although individual vaccines undergo thorough testing, there is little study of the interaction between the combinations of modern vaccines. The bill lists it as the duty of government to maintain public confidence in public health programs by studying the interactions.
The bill notes that there are current populations in the U.S. that abstain from vaccinations and could be used as an acceptable comparison group.
The summary below was written by the Congressional Research Service, which is a nonpartisan division of the Library of Congress.
Vaccine Safety Study Act - Requires the Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS), acting through the Director of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), to conduct a comprehensive study to: (1) compare total health outcomes, including the incidence and risk of autism, between vaccinated and unvaccinated U.S. populations; and (2) determine whether exposure to vaccines or vaccine components is associated with autism spectrum disorders, chronic conditions, or other neurological conditions.
Requires the Secretary to seek to include in the study U.S. populations that have traditionally remained unvaccinated for religious or other reasons.
Directs the Secretary to ensure the preservation of all data, including all data sets, collected or used for purposes of the study to facilitate further research by the Secretary or others. Declares that nothing in this Act shall be construed to authorize the conduct or support of any study in which an individual or population is encouraged or incentivized to remain unvaccinated.