In Texas, white, college-educated people more likely to opt out of vaccinating their kids

White, well-educated parents in Texas are more likely to cite a philosophical objection in opting not to vaccinate their children, according to a study published in PLoS Medicine.

Texas is one of 15 U.S. states that allow families who cite a philosophical objection to vaccines to opt out of vaccinations required for school entry.

Researchers analyzed publicly available reports of the number of conscientious vaccination exemptions for 318 private, 818 public and 60 charter school systems in Texas from the 2012-13 to 2017-18 school years. Researchers focused the study on the 10 largest metropolitan areas of Texas.

The percentages of conscientious vaccination exemptions increased in 41 out of 46 counties in the 10 largest metropolitan areas. Suburban and higher-income communities were more likely to have high vaccination exemption rates than rural counties. Also, areas with higher percentages of young children, white people and people with a bachelor's degree were more likely to have higher vaccination exemption rates.

Counties with lower median income and a higher percentage of people who spoke a language that was not English at home had lower rates of conscientious vaccination exemptions.

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