By Seth Mnookin
The various vaccine manufactroversies that have spread in the wake of the Andrew Wakefield’s bogus claims that the measles component of the MMR vaccine might be linked to autism are too numerous to unpack in one brief blog post. One of the most persistent has been the Amish fallacy: Most Amish don’t vaccinate; there’s almost no record of autism in Amish communities; ergo, vaccines cause autism. (This argument has also been used, time and time and time again, to illustrate the efficacy of a proposed vaccinated-versus-unvaccinated study.)
Not surprisingly, no part of the Amish fallacy — which has been kicking around for over a decade and gained new prominence and attention with this, purely anecdotal 2005 dispatch* — is true. Over the years, Ken Reibel at Autism News Beat has documented the problems with the Amish report, although the myth still persists.
Yesterday, Reuters Health reported on a recent study in Pediatrics titled “Underimmunization in Ohio’s Amish: Parental Fears Are a Greater Obstacle Than Access to Care.” The study found that majority of Amish parents do, in fact, vaccinate their children…and among the minority that don’t, the most common reasons cited were the same anti-vaccine fueled fears that have infected people around the country.
Unlike the theories propagated by anti-vaccine activists, this study was definitely not anecdotal: It was based on surveys sent to hundreds of families in Holmes County, which has a large number of Amish families. As Reuters reports, “Of 359 households that responded to the survey, 85 percent said that at least some of their children had received at least one vaccine. Forty-nine families refused all vaccines for their children, mostly because they worried the vaccines could cause harm and were not worth the risk.”
The study’s conclusions summarize the issue quite succinctly:
The reasons that Amish parents resist immunizations mirror reasons that non-Amish parents resist immunizations. Even in America’s closed religious communities, the major barrier to vaccination is concern over adverse effects of vaccinations. If 85% of Amish parents surveyed accept some immunizations, they are a dynamic group that may be influenced to accept preventative care. Underimmunization in the Amish population must be approached with emphasis on changing parental perceptions of vaccines in addition to ensuring access to vaccines.
It’ll be interesting to see how this plays out in the days to come…and what objections will be raised to invalidate this latest piece of evidence.
New figures from the WHO suggest that around 13.8 million deaths were prevented during this time and reported cases declined by 77%.
Good routine immunisation levels and campaigns to vaccinate children are thought to be behind the figures.
A new study examined multiple strategies for communicating about the safety and importance of vaccines. None of them worked.
http://www.motherjones.com/environment/ ... ire-effect
http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-c ... -1.2572461
But, others think the issue isn't anywhere near that simple. NYC-based physician Dr. Frank Lipman says, “I think the vaccine issue is very nuanced. It’s not a black or white issue.” He points to a study suggesting that the current measles vaccine may not be as protective as it used to be, citing this as evidence that it may be a mistake to hold anti-vax sentiment as totally responsible for the re-emergence of measles in America.
Of course, any claims one way or the other must be taken with a massive handful of salt — we simply don't have the numbers we need to determine the effect of the anti-vax movement on this particular situation. One thing's for sure, though: Measles is back — and there's still a vaccine that could potentially protect you (and your current and/or future children) from it. (The Daily Beast)
http://www.refinery29.com/2014/03/64428 ... s-outbreak
http://www.parenting.com/article/10-vac ... s---busted
This is dangerously misleading information. Many children could be harmed by it.
A quick glance at the CDC’s website reveals significant side effects. The Center received about 22,000 reports of adverse events following Gardasil HPV vaccination from June 2006 to March 2013, with 8% of these reports considered “serious”—among them, 157 deaths and diagnoses of Guillain-Barre Syndrome, encephalitis, brain injury, and seizure (convulsion). This was more side effects reported than for any other vaccine. Read more: http://www.anh-usa.org/falsehoods-about-hpv-vaccine/
"The belief that public-health measures are not intended for people like us is widely held by people like me. Public health, we assume, is for people with less — less education, less healthy habits, less access to quality health care, less time and money. I’ve heard mothers of my class suggest, for instance, that the standard childhood vaccination schedule groups together multiple shots because poor mothers can’t visit the doctor frequently enough to get the twenty-six recommended shots separately. (No matter that many mothers, myself included, might find so many visits daunting.) That, we seem to be saying of the standard schedule, is for people like them.
When the last nationwide smallpox epidemic began in 1898, some people believed that whites were not susceptible to the disease. It was called “*bleep* itch” or, where it was associated with immigrants, “Italian itch” or “Mexican bump.” When smallpox broke out in New York City, police officers were sent to help enforce the vaccination of Italian and Irish immigrants in the tenements. And when smallpox arrived in Middlesboro, Kentucky, everyone in the black section of town who resisted immunization was vaccinated at gunpoint. These campaigns did limit the spread of the disease, but most of the risk of vaccination, which at that time could lead to infection with other diseases, was absorbed by the most vulnerable. The poor were forced into the service of the privileged.
Debates over vaccination, then as now, were often cast as debates over the integrity of science, though they could just as easily be understood as conversations about power. The working-class people who resisted England’s 1853 provision of free, mandatory vaccination were concerned, in part, for their own liberty. Faced with fines, imprisonment, and the seizure of their property if they did not vaccinate their infants, they sometimes compared their predicament to slavery. In her history of that antivaccination movement, Nadja Durbach returns often to the idea that the resisters saw their bodies “not as potentially contagious and thus dangerous to the social body, but as highly vulnerable to contamination and violation.” Their bodies were, of course, both vulnerable and contagious. But in a time and place where the bodies of the poor were seen as a source of disease, as dangerous to others, it fell to the poor to articulate that they were also vulnerable.
If it was meaningful then for the poor to assert that they were not purely dangerous, I suspect it might be just as meaningful now for the rest of us to accept that we are not purely vulnerable. The middle class may be “threatened,” but we are still, just by virtue of having bodies, dangerous. Even the little bodies of children, which nearly all the thinking common to our time encourages us to imagine as absolutely vulnerable, are dangerous in their ability to spread disease. Think of the unvaccinated boy in San Diego, for instance, who returned from a trip to Switzerland with a case of measles that infected his two siblings, five schoolmates, and four children in his doctor’s waiting room. Three of these children were infants too young to be vaccinated, and one of them had to be hospitalized.
Unvaccinated children, according to a 2004 analysis of CDC data, are more likely than undervaccinated children to be white and to live in households with an income of $75,000 or more — like my child. Their mothers are more likely to be, like me, married and college-educated. Undervaccinated children, meaning children who have received some but not all of their recommended immunizations, are more likely to be black, to have younger, unmarried mothers, and to live in poverty.
“Vaccination works,” my father, a doctor, tells me, “by enlisting a majority in the protection of a minority.” He means the minority of the population that is particularly vulnerable to a disease. The elderly, in the case of influenza. Newborns, in the case of pertussis. Pregnant women, in the case of rubella. When relatively wealthy white women choose to vaccinate our children, we may also be participating in the protection of poor black children whose single mothers have not, as a result of circumstance rather than choice, fully vaccinated them. This is a radical inversion of the historical approach to vaccination, which was once just another form of bodily servitude extracted from the poor for the benefit of the privileged. There is some truth now to the idea that public health is not strictly for people like me, but it is through us — literally through our bodies — that public health is maintained
https://blogs.scientificamerican.com/ob ... _text_free
https://www.facebook.com/7557552517/pos ... 030242518/
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-heal ... e=facebook
Jun 9 · 1
I am writing this in April 2020. I am among the millions who are social distancing to curb the spread of SARS COV2, the virus that causes COVID 19. I have not spoken to any of my loved ones in person in seven weeks and am looking down the barrel of at least another four. Wouldn’t it be great if we had a vaccine for this right now? Well, we’re going to have to wait impatiently for that, but now is the perfect time to remind ourselves of the good that vaccines do for the world and the many diseases that we don’t have to worry about because of them. But let me tell you, that security crumbles very quickly if a few too many people exercise their so-called civil liberties because they’re not sure if vaccines are safe.
https://medium.com/@hmdskinner/now-weve ... 7de9910dd1
But the history goes back much further, and legend has it that a traveling Chinese healer—of a genre referred to as fangshi, which, Cassidy writes, lacks a good English transliteration—invented the practice sometime around 1,000 A.D. A date that far in the past seems unlikely, Cassidy writes, but in later centuries, a unique blend of observed best practices and currents of thought in Chinese folk medicine may have combined to produce the idea of infecting someone in order to protect him or her—a practice that began with wearing the clothes of a person infected with smallpox.
The myth of a mystically gifted healer who descended from a sacred mountain to heal a Chinese prime minister at the turn of the first millennium, Cassidy writes, was likely a fabrication to sell patients on the untested method (“one doesn’t sell their elixir by saying that they came up with the recipe”). Cassidy concludes that the “weight of the evidence, and sudden burst of documentation, suggest” the first-ever vaccination of a patient occurred in China “around the same time Christopher Columbus landed in the New World