Issue Two 2016
2016, Vol. 3, issue 2, (December)
Ethical and healthcare considerations in relation to mandatory vaccination – Bulgarian perspective
Every human being is entitled to the enjoyment of the highest attainable standard of health conducive to living a life in dignity. The right to health includes access to health services and also involves prevention as part of maintaining public health.
Despite the European Union framework, cases of children being unvaccinated and remaining vulnerable to potentially life-threatening diseases have been observed in Europe. Some of the reasons for this may be the multiple ethical factors to consider in the case of childhood vaccination.
Main aspects of ethical conflict are the rights of a child to protection from illnesses and poor health versus the rights of a parent to make choices for their child.
Some countries have adopted national policy of mandatory immunization, others liberalize their national legislation, after recognizing that mandatory immunization to some infectious diseases is not being enforced. In Bulgarian national legislation, since 2005 has been adopted Ordinance No.15 for the immunizations in the Republic of Bulgaria, issued by the Ministry of Health.
Ethical and healthcare considerations in relation to mandatory vaccination should be examined when establishing effective health policies both on national and international level.