House Representative

Jetton, Jacey


Sen. Kolkhorst and Rep. Jetton File Legislation to Protect Personal Vaccine Information

AUSTIN, TX - State Representative Jacey Jetton (Richmond) and State Senator Lois Kolkhorst (R-Brenham) have filed legislation to prevent county health authorities from sharing personal vaccine or immunization information with third parties.

"Throughout my time in the legislature I have worked to ensure that individuals own and control their medical records," said Senator Kolkhorst who chairs the Senate Health & Human Services Committee. "In 2011, I passed landmark medical privacy legislation in HB 300; SB 74 builds on that work to ensure individuals, not governments nor corporations control personal medical information."

“Texans expect and deserve privacy with their medical records,” said Jetton, who serves on the House Public Health Committee. “My constituents want peace of mind, knowing their elected officials and government agencies will not share their medical information with any group outside of their healthcare provider. I filed HB 273 to ensure governments protect sensitive medical documents.”

Texas Law currently allows county health authorities to disclose vaccine and immunization records to healthcare professionals or any third party with whom they are contracted, even if a third party is not the person’s healthcare provider. HB 273 and SB 74 requires county health authorities to keep vaccine and immunization records private and secure. Those who should reasonably have access to these records, such as an individual’s healthcare provider and those with power of attorney, will still be able to access them.

Kolkhorst and Jetton authored a letter earlier this week requesting the Fort Bend County Commissioners Court to not share residents’ vaccine and immunization information with a for-profit, third party, political consulting firm. They instead encouraged the Commissioners Court to utilize the existing nonprofits embedded in the community to increase vaccination efforts in underserved and high risk communities. Fort Bend County boasts some of the highest vaccination rates in Texas, but Kolkhorst and Jetton are committed to continuing efforts to ensure all individuals who want a COVID vaccine have access to it.