This week is National Infant Immunization Week!
For many of us, it was an anxiety-riddled memory of getting a ton of shots at the doctor’s office when we were younger. And for many, the tables have turned, and as a parent you’re now taking your child to get these immunizations.
And while no one likes a crying baby or sore shoulder, it is an important medical benefit that we have almost taken for granted. So many diseases now are literally history, thanks to vaccines that have virtually eradicated them.
Furthermore, routine childhood immunization in one birth cohort prevents an estimated 381 million illnesses, 24.5 million hospitalizations, and 855,000 early deaths over the course of their lifetimes, at a net savings of $360 billion in direct costs and $1.65 trillion in total societal costs.
Definitely makes medical and fiscal sense!
But always looming in the background has been a debate about whether vaccines are truly safe; most recently, the debate has veered into whether certain vaccines (the MMR – or measles-mumps-rubella) cause autism.
The vaccines/autism debate can be traced back to the 1990s, when a group of British researchers published a study showing that individuals who had been vaccinated with the MMR vaccine were more likely to have bowel disease than individuals who had not received it. One of these researchers went on to further study a possible link between the vaccine and neuropsychiatric diseases – specifically, autism.
In 1998, a case series study was published, claiming evidence of the measles virus in the digestive systems of children who had exhibited autism symptoms after MMR vaccination.
Over the next twelve years, the possibility of a link between MMR and autism was studied exhaustively.
No reputable, relevant study confirmed the British findings; instead, many well-designed studies have found no link between MMR and bowel disease or MMR and autism.
While Patient Worthy supports the sweeping scientific and medical consensus supporting children getting vaccinations – we also understand that every health decision is ultimately made within your family and your doctors.
Now, in honor of Immunization Week – here are some things you can do for your children!
- National Infant Immunization Week is the perfect time to learn about the vaccines your baby needs! Click here to visit the CDC’s site to learn about the 14 diseases vaccines prevent, view the latest immunization schedule, and get tips on how to comfort your baby during vaccine visits.
- You know your baby needs vaccines, but which do they need and when? Click here to take this quiz to see which vaccines your child needs!
- The CDC Foundation and the CDC will announce 2018’s CDC Childhood Immunization Champions today! These Champions are an outstanding group of individuals who make a significant contribution to improving public health through their work in childhood immunization.
- For you social media warriors, click here to download and access digital toolkits to spread awareness for Immunization Week. And don’t forget to use the hashtag #ivax2protect