Moldovan cabinet members at odds over mandatory vaccination of pupils

The issue regarding the mandatory vaccination of school children aroused a wave of contradictory discussions among the members of the Moldovan Cabinet. In the end, the Government decided that “the prophylactic vaccination or non-vaccination of children shall not be an impediment to their enrollment in education institutions.”

Moldovan Minister of Justice Oleg Efrim said that the preliminary assessment of this draft law is negative, as according to the current legislation, “the vaccination is not only a right, but also an obligation.”  

“Previously, this issue was considered by the Constitutional Court of Moldova, which ceased the examination of the inquiries in this respect, submitted by a parliamentary lawyer. This means that the vaccination remains mandatory. In our opinion, the enrolment restrictions for non-vaccinated children comply with the provisions of the Moldovan Constitution. Thus, we speak for turning down this initiative,” he said.

Deputy Prime Minister, Minister of Economy Valeriu Lazar urged the Government not to rush in taking a decision on the matter. He also said that about 95% of vaccinated children do not have any complications, but 1-2% of children experience adverse reactions.

Moldovan Minister of Health Andrei Usatii reminded that the vaccines have proved their usefulness over many decades, since their creation.

“The risks to have some adverse effects after vaccinations are minor. There is a very low percentage of people who experience second-order reactions, not only in Moldova, but all over the world. Those who refuse vaccination are exposed to more serious risks,” he said.   

Deputy Prime Minister for Social Issues, Tatiana Poting reminded that this problem has been discussed over the past two years. “The Ministry of Education received many complaints from parents whose children do not have access to education, because they are not vaccinated. Thus, we should be much more sober-minded, in this respect,” she said.  

Prime Minister Iurie Leanca agreed to postpone the examination of this issue, for a short term.

“I would like to ask the Ministry of Health to learn the experience of other countries in this field, in order to take the right decision,” he said, noting that within a month, this issue will be included again on the agenda of the Government’s meeting.  

Adapted from