Julie S. Bertram
This paper was written for MLS 500: Graduate Research and Writing taught by Dr. Kyla Hammond
Most healthcare professionals and leaders attribute vaccination as the single-most important reason for increasing the health of the human population during the past one hundred years. As a result, required immunizations are common in the U. S. and other developed countries. However, there is a segment of society who argue against vaccination due to worries that immunizing negatively impacts future health. More and more information is becoming available that presents allopathic vaccination in an ugly light. (Sharma, ...view middle of the document...
Hence, these issues will be examined.
The procedure for adding mandatory immunizations begins at the Center for Disease Control and Prevention's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices. This fifteen member committee, from scientific and medical communities, holds meetings three times a year. This committee makes recommendations for vaccines to be mandated by states' legislatures. Each legislature must make the decision to deem a vaccine mandatory. Additionally, medical providers must decide what vaccines they will recommend for their patients, not all being mandated immunizations, and patient trust in their providers determines whether they take some vaccines. (Largent, 2012)
The relationship between vaccine preventable diseases and vaccine efficacy was examined by the CDC in 1996. Findings showed that since the initiation of immunizations for diptheria, pertussus, tetanus, measles, mumps, rubella, polio and haemophilus influenza B, the diseases have decreased by between 97.8% and 100%. (Largent, 2012) It is true that many immunizations come with adverse side effects. However, most of these side effects are minor, causing only pain and redness at the injection site or mild body temperature elevations. More severe reactions have been documented, but those reactions are particularly rare, occurring much less that the potentially deadly diseases would without vaccination. Each vaccine's benefits must outweigh it's risks in order for it to be considered safe as a mandated immunization. The results of vaccine programs in the developed world have largely eradicated many childhood diseases. Only when vaccine rates fall, or pockets of unvaccinated children develop, do we see diseases such as Measles reappear. It is apparent that most parents feel safer vaccinating their children than they do not vaccinating which is reflected by the high vaccination rate in the U.S. (Largent, 2012)
On the other hand, more vaccines mean more side effects. Increasingly, parents are anxious regarding the expanding volume of immunizations that they are supposed to permit their medical providers to give to their children. Not just the risk of each vaccine, but the volume of vaccines makes parents nervous. Children in the U.S. are now expected to receive between twenty-six and thirty-five vaccines before the time they enroll in kindergarten. (Park, 2008) Most of these vaccines are given before a child is eighteen months old, which also creates anxiety for parents. As many as six vaccines can be given at a time during a typical pediatric appointment. This can be a significant concern for parents, especially when the same pediatrician stresses the need to introduce foods one at a time to be able to identify potential allergic reactions. The addition of each vaccine increases the likelihood of the occurrence of side effects. Of great concern is the fact that the U.S. has one of the highest infant mortality rates in the developed world. (Largent, 2012) Could this be...