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Texas House votes to rescind cervical cancer vaccine order

[JURIST] Texas lawmakers on Wednesday approved a bill [legislative materials] to rescind a landmark executive order [text; JURIST report] by Governor Rick Perry (R) [official website] requiring that school-age girls receive a vaccine against cervical cancer. The Texas House of Representatives [official website] approved the bill by a margin of 118-23, garnering enough votes to override a potential veto. The Public Health Committee [official website] of the House voted to advance the bill to the House floor [JURIST report] last month. Perry's February order is controversial because human papillomavirus (HPV) [US CDC fact sheet], the primary cause of cervical cancer, is sexually transmitted. Perry's order required girls entering the sixth grade to receive the vaccine unless their parents opted out. A number of legislators have directly challenged the legality of the executive order [JURIST report].

Lawmakers in about 20 other states are considering similar legal measures [PJEPHL report] to prevent the spread of HPV. Last month, a bill to require the vaccine was defeated by the Kansas Legislature [KTKA-TV report], while Virginia became the second state to mandate HPV vaccination [JURIST report] for sixth grade girls earlier this month. On Tuesday, the Washington State House of Representatives passed a bill requiring public and private schools to provide information about HPV [JURIST report] to parents of sixth grade students. AP has more.

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