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More Than 1 in 10 Parents Skip, Delay Kids' Shots
USA Today - 10/3/11
By age 6, children should have vaccinations against 14 diseases, in at least two dozen separate doses, the US government advises. More than 1 in 10 parents reject that, refusing some shots or delaying others mainly because of safety concerns, a national survey found.
Editorial: Put to rest false link of autism, vaccine
Chicago Sun-Times - 8/29/11
Belief in a false link between vital childhood vaccinations and autism has persisted for years, fueled by bad science and distressed parents searching for answers. It is time to put this falsehood to rest. One study after another has found no link, and now the most comprehensive, independent analysis of research on childhood vaccines has come to the same conclusion. The vaccine against measles, mumps and rubella (MMR) does not cause autism, according to a review released last week by an expert committee of the Institute of Medicine. The review is considered the best analysis of potential side effects of eight common childhood vaccines.
Vaccine Safety: New Report Finds Few Adverse Events Linked to Immunizations
TIME - 8/25/11
In a new report investigating adverse events caused by vaccines, a panel of experts says there are relatively few health problems caused by the most commonly recommended immunizations, which public health experts advise that all children receive. The conclusions, issued by the Institute of Medicine (IOM) in its latest report, "Adverse Effects of Vaccines: Evidence and Causality," represent the most comprehensive review of the available literature on the potential side effects of eight vaccines – for mumps, measles and rubella (MMR); chicken pox; influenza; hepatitis A; hepatitis B; human papillomavirus (HPV); diphtheria, tetanus and pertussis (DTaP); and meningococcus.
Report: Vaccines safe, side effects rare
USA Today - 8/25/11
Common childhood immunizations do not cause chronic diseases such as autism and diabetes, finds a new expert report that may ease parents' fears about the safety of vaccines. Authors of the nearly 700-page report, released Thursday, say they took pains to carefully consider virtually every potential complication. While all drugs have side effects, the report notes that vaccine-related complications are extremely rare. Overall, vaccines' enormous benefits far outweigh the risks, says study co-author S. Claiborne Johnston of the University of California-San Diego.
Vaccine Concerns Common among Parents of Young Children
American Medical News - 6/20/11
Family physicians and pediatricians should be prepared to talk to parents during office visits about the safety of vaccine ingredients, pain from the shots and the number of immunizations recommended for young children. These are some of parents' most common worries about childhood vaccines, according to a study published in the June issue of Health Affairs. The report found that while about 8 in 10 parents follow the childhood vaccination schedule recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, many have concerns about immunization.
Opinion by Seth Mnookin: An Early Cure for Parents' Vaccine Panic
Washington Post - 6/10/11
Almost exactly 15 years ago, top officials of the World Health Organization and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention met in Atlanta to strategize for what would have been one of the most remarkable public health victories in history: the eradication of measles, one of the most infectious microbes known to humankind. By the mid-1990s, widespread use of the measles vaccine had halted transmission of the virus among residents of the United States and Britain.
Vaccination Rate for Kindergartners Is Over 90%
WebMD - 6/2/11
More than 90% of children entering kindergarten in the U.S. have had most recommended immunizations, although coverage rates remain below target goals for most states, the CDC says. The newly published vaccination coverage report for the first time includes state-by-state data on vaccination exceptions granted for medical, religious, or philosophical reasons. More than half of the states providing vaccination information to the CDC had exemption rates of around 1% or less. Four states – Alaska, Washington, Oregon, and Vermont – had exemptions above 5%.
One-third of Articles about Vaccines Contained Negative Messages
Pediatric Supersite - 4/28/11
Hamidah Hussain, MBBS, MSc,and colleagues from Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore examined about 1,200 articles relating to vaccination, which were published between 1995 and 2005. The researchers used key terms such as "vaccine" and "adverse events" and coded these articles as having an overall "positive" or "negative" message, accordingly. The researchers noted spikes in the number of newspaper articles in 1999 regarding rotavirus vaccine safety and in 2002 and 2003 regarding smallpox vaccines.
Video: Paul Offit on the Dangers of the Anti-Vaccine Movement
Medscape - 4/27/11
I think we're at a tipping point and it worries me. The tipping point is evidenced by outbreaks, the likes of which we haven't seen recently. For example, we have a whooping cough outbreak in California that's bigger than anything we've seen since 1947.
New Trend in Pediatrics: Vaccines Required
CBS Local (Alabama) - 4/22/11
Lori Buher will never forget the night her healthy teenage son Carl fell terribly ill and had to be rushed to the hospital. The diagnosis: bacterial meningitis. "We couldn't even conceive that it happened so quickly," Buher says. "We were busy worrying he was going to miss his next football game or next fall basketball game or his social studies test and here they were telling us he was going to die." Carl didn't die, but he lost both his legs and three of his fingers to a disease he could have been vaccinated against. Carl's heartbreaking story is exactly the kind of thing Vestavia Hills Pediatrician Dr. Joe Hamm wants to prevent. He's made childhood vaccinations mandatory at his practice.
What Science Says about Science Deniers
MinnPost.com - 4/20/11
Minnesota's measles epidemic has now reached 20 confirmed cases (twice as many as occurred during all of the previous 10 years), including 13 hospitalizations. And, as has been reported here and elsewhere, a misguided fear of vaccines – particularly the fear that they cause autism – is the main fuel behind the epidemic. Study after study – solid empirical evidence – has shown that vaccines do not cause autism, but many parents continue to cling to that dangerous belief. Of course, the vaccine-autism link is not the only scientific topic that has its stubborn deniers.
Most Parents Vaccinate Kids, Trust Docs' Advice on Shots
HealthDay - 4/19/11
About 93 percent of parents said their children either had or were going to get all of the recommended vaccinations, and more than three-fourths said they trusted their doctor's advice on immunizations, two new surveys find. Pediatricians and infectious disease experts say this is good news. After years of hype about a supposed autism/MMR (measles, mumps, rubella) link – a claim that has been roundly discredited – it seems parents are heeding the advice of medical experts and protecting their children from potentially devastating diseases.
Did CDC Conspire to Hide Vaccine Risk? 'Simpsonwood Conspiracy' Claims Debunked; Concerns Remain
WebMD - 4/10/11
Did the CDC conspire with vaccine advocates to hide evidence that children get autism from mercury in vaccines? The claim was made most forcefully by Robert F. Kennedy Jr.
Doctors Most Trusted Source of Vaccine Information, Study Finds
HealthDay - 4/7/11
For American parents, doctors are the most trusted source of information about the safety of children's vaccines, a new study indicates. Researchers conducted a national survey of 1,552 parents of children aged 17 and younger, and found that 76 percent said they trusted their child's doctor 'a lot' when it came to getting information about vaccine safety. Other sources trusted 'a lot' by parents included other health care providers (26 percent) and government vaccine experts/officials (23 percent).
WebMD Survey: Safety Biggest Vaccine Worry for Parents
WebMD - 4/2/11
Parents worry a lot about vaccine risks and side effects, and most of them are questioning doctors about those concerns. A recent WebMD survey of parents found that: About two-thirds search online for information about the vaccines recommended for their children. Nearly 70% say they're looking for news about potential vaccine risks, and for news of benefits that might offset those risks. 66% said they had either questioned or refused vaccines.
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