Eighty House Republicans voted with Democrats on Tuesday to pass the Immunization Infrastructure Modernization Act, which would fund a federal vaccination database if passed by the Senate and signed into law.
The Immunization Infrastructure Modernization Act (IIMA) was established to “authorize the Secretary of Health and Human Services (the Secretary) to conduct activities, including designating data and technology standards, developing public-private partnerships, and awarding grants or cooperative agreements to health departments, to expand, enhance, and improve immunization information systems (IIS).”
An immunization information system means a confidential, population-based, computerized database that records immunization doses administered by any health care provider to persons within the geographic area covered by that database.
The authorized funding for this database, approved by the Democrats and 80 House Republicans, was $400 million in taxpayer dollars.
This vaccine database will automatically remind patients about vaccine schedules. Public health officials can review aggregate data in IIS to determine overall vaccination levels to guide public health decisions better.
The database will also have the ability to determine who is and who is not vaccinated within specific towns, cities, or population levels. Along with determining what household members are or aren’t dosed with boosters or additional vaccinations.
In a statement, the bill’s main sponsor, Democrat Rep. Ann Kuster (NH), said the system would be used to “remind patients when they are due for a recommended vaccine” and identify areas with low vaccination rates to “ensure equitable distribution of vaccines.”
Notably, the bill has four Republican co-sponsors: Reps. Larry Bucshon (R-IN), James Baird (R-IN), David McKinley (R-WV), and Brian Fitzpatrick (R-PA). Not a single Democrat voted in opposition to the bill.
Rep. Mary Miller (R-IL), one of the 130 Republicans to vote “no” to the bill, stated on Wednesday that the legislation would enable the federal government to “track” unvaccinated Americans who “will be targeted and forced to comply with Biden’s crazy ‘global vaccination’ vision.”
Miller did not hold back in her comments stating, “These systems are designed to allow for the sharing of crucial information and maintenance of records. Do we really trust the government to protect our medical records? Adding in, “This was clearly a legislative tool to enforce vaccine mandates and force their Orwellian rules onto those who do not comply.”
Miller also noted that the legislation paves the way for the government to give blue states millions in taxpayer funds to enforce vaccine mandates. According to the bill’s text, the government could award grants and cooperative agreements to health departments or other local governmental entities for agreeing to adopt the new data collection guidelines set by the CDC. Any agencies hoping to receive a grant must agree to comply with security standards to protect personal health information.
On the other hand, Kuster urges the Senate to quickly pass the legislation, saying the pandemic showed just how underprepared the country’s “vaccine infrastructure” is. She emphasized that the legislation would help better prepare healthcare systems for “future public health crises.”
Watch as Frank Pallone promotes IIMA