Arkansas passes legislation banning COVID-19 vaccine mandates and requires publication of potential vaccine adverse events

Arkansas signed into law S.B. 3, which prohibits the government from mandating COVID-19 vaccination for public employees or state funded entities, with an exception for entities that stand to lose federal funding should they remove vaccine mandates. The bill also requires the Department of Health to maintain and publicize information on potential adverse side effects from the COVID-19 vaccine. Some audiences celebrated the governor for standing up for public employees and speaking out against COVID-19 vaccines.

Risk Level: Medium

Recommendation: This alert is of particular relevance to doctors and other healthcare providers in Arkansas, as this law could prompt new questions from patients who were previously unconcerned about vaccine side effects. Messaging may emphasize that severe adverse reactions are rare and that the benefits of vaccination outweigh the risks.