California Advances Crackdown on Bogus Vaccine Exemptions

SACRAMENTO (AP) California's state Assembly has approved legislation designed to crack down on doctors who sell fraudulent medical exemptions for vaccinations.

But Gov. Gavin Newsom's office said immediately after Tuesday's vote that he will seek additional technical amendments affecting one of this legislative session's most hotly debated issues.

The bill by Democratic Sen. Richard Pan of Sacramento would allow state public health officials to investigate doctors who grant more than five medical exemptions in a year and schools with vaccination rates of less than 95%.

Officials say lower rates erode the "community immunity" that limits measles outbreaks like those that reached their highest level in decades this year.

Opponents say the measure improperly interferes with doctor-patient relationships.

It passed the Assembly, 47-17.

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