Vaccines and Airline Travel: A Federal Role to Protect the Public Health
30 Pages Posted: 26 Jul 2016
Date Written: July 22, 2016
This Article explores two ways in which airline travel is an important vector for the spread of infectious disease, and argues that airlines have market-based and liability-based reasons to require that passengers be vaccinated. Going further, the Article explores whether the federal government has the legal and constitutional authority — especially under the Commerce Clause — to encourage or mandate that airlines implement such a vaccine screen. By disrupting the spread of disease at key network nodes where individuals interact and then connect with other geographic regions, and by creating another incentive for adult vaccination, an airline vaccine screen could be an effective and legally viable tool for the protection of public health.
Keywords: vaccines, public health, airline travel, infectious disease, vaccine screen
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