Vaccinations have become an important topic discussed throughout the country. Health professionals, parents and practitioners in the field have varying opinions on the importance of vaccinating children.
MYTH Video 1:
Vaccines make children sick and have adverse reactions.
Two moms from Oregon report that they do not vaccinate their children at a young age and opt out of some vaccinations such as the MMR vaccine out of fear that it will make their children sick. These parents do not trust everything that doctor’s say, and do not want to harm their children for the sake of other children’s health.
Fact: Article 1
The article by the US Dept. of Health & Human Services, Five Important Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child outlines 5 positive reasons in support of vaccinations.
- Saves the lives of children
- Effective and safe
- Helps community at large and the people that a child comes in contact with
- Saves money and time
- Has a positive impact on future generations
- Vaccinations have completely eliminated some diseases and other diseases are close to being eliminated.
- Vaccinations are used after prolonged studies by researchers, doctors and health professionals. Rarely children have severe reactions; most often children are affected by discomfort at the injection site.
- Children need to be vaccinated because they come in contact with children that are unable to be immunized and are the most vulnerable.
- Vaccines are most often covered by insurance. If a child falls ill due to not being vaccinated, the family may experience financial hardship and time out of work.
- Today, if children are vaccinated, diseases will continue to be eliminated. One example includes Rubella. If children are consistently vaccinated against Rubella, then babies will not be exposed in utero by their mothers. Hence, future generations will not be vaccinated against a disease that no longer exists.
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2006, October 11). Five Important Reasons to Vaccinate Your Child. Retrieved from https://www.vaccines.gov/getting/for_parents/five_reasons/index.html
Myth Video 2:
Vaccines cause autism.
This video shows President Trump claiming that vaccines cause autism along with a twitter post stating “No more massive injections. Tiny children are not horses—one vaccine at a time, over time.”
This video is a mom talking about her experiences regarding vaccinating her child. She claims:
- Her child was typically developing until age two when he received 6 vaccines.
- Her child is now unable to speak, wheel chair bound and is not considered typically developing.
- She is convinced her child does not have autism and has a condition that is caused by vaccinations.
Fact: Article 2
The article Promoting Childhood Immunizations states the importance of immunizations while bringing to light parental concerns that are expressed in the media. The article focuses on using research to dispel parental fears of vaccines. According to the article, 1% to 2% of the parents nationally are not vaccinating their children, while 11% to 19% do not give vaccinations per timelines. The article addresses:
Why are vaccines combined?
- Combined vaccines protect a child as early as possible.
- Combined vaccines decrease the amount of injections.
- Combined vaccines save money.
Are vaccines safe?
- Vaccines can be tested up to 10 years from the start of the vaccine to licensing the vaccine. The FDA licenses all vaccines and monitors safety of vaccines after licensure.
- Infants are exposed to bacteria and do not respond with infection. Infants have a very strong immune system, and combined vaccines will not overwhelm their bodies.
Do vaccines cause autism?
- Many studies have proven that vaccines do not contribute to autism. In fact, the Institute of Medicine after a comprehensive review of the literature, reported that there is no evidence that there is a correlation between the MMR vaccine and autism.
Are the substances in vaccines safe?
- Aluminum is a substance in vaccines that assists to increase an immune response. According to both FDA and Plotkin & Plotkin, evidence over a 60 year period does not support that aluminum is a safety concern.
- Formaldehyde is a substance that weakens the virus or the toxicity of the bacteria in a vaccine. According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, newborns have “….50 to 70 times more formaldehyde naturally in their bodies” (Anderson, V.L.) than what is in one dose of a vaccine.
V.L, Anderson. (2015). Promoting Childhood Immunizations.
Myth Video 3:
Vaccines, and substances found in vaccines are linked to autism.
In this video, Dr. Andrew Wakefield discusses how the CDC is misinformed about vaccines and autism. He specifically targets the MMR vaccine as having a correlation to autism with those children that receive the MMR vaccine and have a reaction to it.
Fact: Article 3
- The Center for Disease Control (CDC) article, Vaccines Do Not Cause Autism states that there is no connection between autism and vaccines. This is an important article to reference because parents are not vaccinating children due to this fear.
- The article mentions studies conducted by the Institute of Medicine that found that vaccines are safe. The CDC has also performed research specifically related to the ingredients found in vaccines and found that there is no link between vaccines and autism.
- A study conducted in 2013 found on the CDC webpage, Increasing Exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Protein and Ploysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism by DeStefano, Price and Weibtraub, discusses the substances found in vaccines and how the results concluded that the substances that cause the body to produce antibodies to fight disease, were the same between children with autism and those without (2012).
- As stated in the CDC, nine studies were conducted in 2003, also finding no correlation between substances found in vaccines such as the Measles, Mumps, Rubella (MMR) and autism.
Centers of Disease Control and Prevention. (October, 2015). Vaccinations Do Not Cause Harm. https://www.cdc.gov/vaccinesafety/concerns/autism.html
DeStefano, F., MD. Price, C.S., & Weintraub, E.S. (2012). Increasing exposure to Antibody-Stimulating Proteins and Polysaccharides in Vaccines Is Not Associated with Risk of Autism. The Journal Of Pediatrics
The peer reviewed articles mentioned discuss the positive affects of vaccinations on children while clearly dispelling the myth that vaccines cause autism and are unsafe. Noted in the research, there has a been a decline in vaccinating children at a young age due to a parent’s fear of the potential negative effects on the child. Vaccinations protect children from viruses that may be potentially deadly to those that come into contact with the virus. It is important for all parties concerned to continue to keep updated on the wealth of information related to this topic.
(2018, December 01). Retrieved February 20, 2019, https://www.bioedge.org/indepth/view/3-ethical-reasons-for-vaccinating-your-children/12920
(2015, February 04). Retrieved February 20, 2019, from https://www.cnn.com/videos/health/2015/04/ac-dnt-tuchman-why-we-don’t-vaccinate.cnn
Buncombe, A. (2018, May 05). Retrieved February 20,2019, from https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/americas/trump-vaccines-autism-links-anti-vaxxer-us-preident-false-vaccine-a8331836.html
Cook, L. (2016, June 10). Vaccines Caused My Child’s Autism and Are Destroying Our Children. Retrieved February 20, 2019, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H9MXmLUdME
Cook, L. (2016, May). How the MMR Vaccine Is Linked To Autism and The CDC Cover-Up: Andew Wakefield. Retrieved February 20, 2019 from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=L3uLQZ7qaOQ