Just to throw even more into the discussion, I think Caplan's argument is altered by the specific legislative avenues and compensation availability in each particular country.
In Australia, there is, as yet, no form of no-fault compensation for vaccine injuries. The Royal Australasian College of Physicians has asked the government to put one into place, but nothing yet. Sure, there is the brand new Disability Insurance Scheme, but that has to do with disability support in general and is not vaccine injury specific.
Or you could try and sue the manufacturers as Saba Button's parents are doing, but in that particular case, the vaccine manufacturer (CSL) states that, despite their product not having been trialled in children before roll out and despite the number of severe reactions reported and its eventual ban for children under the age of five years, their company is not liable for Saba's permanent injuries. They say liability lies with the government who did not notify the manufacturers in a timely manner of any issues with the product.
I think Caplan's assertion that parents need to be held accountable and risk lawsuit for infecting others appears ironic from over here. How can a bioethicist demand that parents "do the right thing," when some countries, like Australia, don't have any programs in place for parents whose children were injured when they did what Caplan advocates?
Edited by japonica - 8/3/13 at 8:42pm