Missed Opportunities: The Vaccine Act of 1813

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Missed Opportunities: The Vaccine Act of 1813

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Title: Missed Opportunities: The Vaccine Act of 1813
Author: Singla, Rohit K.
Citation: Missed Opportunities: The Vaccine Act of 1813 (1998 Third Year Paper)
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Abstract: This Paper simply exposes discontinuities between the theories and the history of the Vaccine Act, suggesting lines of further study. The focus throughout this Paper is on "getting the facts right," i.e., thoroughly recounting the history of the Vaccine Act. Part II of the paper provides some necessary historical background regarding the horrors of smallpox, the breakthrough of vaccination, and the difficulties encountered in implementing vaccination in early 19th century America. In particular, the problem of maintaining a steady supply of vaccine is described. Part III analyzes the very limited role assumed by state and local governments in the opening decades of the 19th century. Part IV deals at length with the legislative history of the 1813 Act itself including historical explanations for the Act and public opposition to Dr. Smith. Part V discusses Congressional efforts between 1816 and 1820 to expand the scope of the Vaccine Act. Part VI details the facts of the Tarboro Tragedy and the analyzes the causes of the ensuing repeal of the Vaccine Act in 1822. Part VII very briefly recounts two later 19th century efforts to revive the idea of a "National Vaccine Institution." Part VIII contains a brief conclusion.
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Citable link to this page: http://nrs.harvard.edu/urn-3:HUL.InstRepos:10015266
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