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Thursday, October 9, 2008

Parents should have choice NOT to vaccinate

I'm glad I don't live in New Jersey. The legislature in that state has passed a law requiring parents to have their kids immunized with the flu shot annually.

According to the law, parents will not be allowed to send their kids to preschool or day care without getting the flu shot. Moms who are adamantly against immunizations might be forced to move to another state.

I believe parents should have the option of whether or not to give vaccinations. Fortunately, in Michigan we do have that option.

Keep in mind here I am not against vaccinations here. Most of the vaccinations have been given to my kids. But there are a few of them that I don't think are needed - at least at such a young age.

There are those who say if we all don't get vaccinations against rubella, whooping cough, measles, etc that we will have another outbreak of these in the future.

On the other side of the coin, you have many links between vaccinations and autism, asthma, peanut anaphlaxis, etc. And others who say those links are not credible.

While scientists insist that the flu shot does not cause the flu, there are many people who claim their child (or themselves) have gotten the flu after shortly after getting the shot.

Take Chicken Pox for example. I refused to have my kid get this vaccination because scientists don't even know how long the vaccination will last. It's far safer to get the chicken Pox as a kid as opposed to, say, when he is a teenager or adult.

Every one of my siblings had the Chicken Pox as kids and we all did fine. So, by giving all kids this vaccine, scientists might be setting themselves up for a Chicken Pox epidemic in the future -- when it simply could have been prevented by allowing kids to get the disease and allowing their immune systems develop their own immunities.

And consider Hepatitis A and B. That's the new vaccine the doctor tried to give to my little girl. When is a little girl ever going to be someplace where she will be at risk of getting these diseases?
Needless to say, those vaccination were not given to my child while the doctor looked on with irritated eyes, as though she believed everything the FDA said about these "much needed" vaccinations.

So what about the flu vaccination?

This is one of those instances where the option should be with the parent, and not a government official sitting in a leather seat.

A parent should always have the option to opt out of vaccinations. For no other reason than we are placing chemicals into our children's bodies that not even scientists know with 100% certainty the future implications of.

Scientists may be right when they say that these vaccinations are safe. However, a parent should have a right to doubt them.

Again, we should remember this: Every time a new law is made, another freedom is taken away."

Natural has an excellent article about this.


Anonymous said...

Wow, finally someone in the medical blogosphere with this view! Look out for the flames comin' your way! I found that with my kids, I was relieved to have been talked in to the Hep B series for the baby-I had a needlestick injury at work and that was one less thing to worry about with the whole thing. I agree that the choice should be with the (fully educated, informed) parents. Thanks for the refreshing view!


keepbreathing said...

As lpnmom said, prepare for the flames. I disagree with you to an extent, but I will not 'flame.' That being said...

I agree that parents should have a choice, but that doesn't mean I don't think people who skip vaccinations are making a terrible decision. Kids are getting sick, critically sick, with diseases that had been minimized with vaccination. I've seen kids with pertussis, and I'd much rather give my own kid a shot than have them suffer the ravages of an illness like that. Can you imagine the horror of losing a child to something entirely preventable, like German measles? Losing a child is any human being's worst nightmare, but losing it due to negligence...even worse.

Further, the 'link' between vaccines and autism does not exist. It has never been proven to exist, and the best explanation for the simultaneous rise in rates of vaccination and detection of autism is an improvement in screening for autism. With improved autism screening, kids that were previously written off as just dysfunctional were suddenly diagnosed with a defined problem that hadn't been described years before. This led to a perceived increase in autism that coincided with the increase in vaccinations.

And anyway, we all know that correlation does not equal causation. Just because I burped and then my patient died does not mean that my gas killed them.

All that being said, forcing parents to vaccinate their children is not the answer. Educating parents is.

Freadom said...

Just for the record, this wasn't supposed to be an anti-vaccination post. Like keepbreathing said, there are some vaccines that should be given. My point was that the government should not have the power to force vaccinations on our kids.

As in the examples I gave, there are some diseases kids simply don't need to be vaccinated against.

keepbreathing said...

I'll give you props there, a chicken pox vaccine does seem a little absurd. I had it, my brother had it, everybody I knew had it, and apart from a few days of discomfort it wasn't so bad.

And I agree with you completely that the government shouldn't be forcing people into things like that. Letting them dictate what you can and can not do to yourself is a bad thing.