Outbreaks Follow as U.S. Parents Reject Vaccines

May 21, 2008 08:15 PM
by findingDulcinea Staff
As more parents decide against vaccinating their children, outbreaks of measles and other preventable illnesses are cropping up around the country.

30-Second Summary

Some uncommon and potentially fatal childhood diseases are making a comeback around the United States because parents have chosen to skip vaccinations for their children out of a concern that the shots aren't safe.

Every state allows vaccination exemptions, with most permitting parents to opt out of mandatory vaccinations for religious reasons.

But an increasing number of parents are objecting to the inoculations because of “the unproven notion that vaccines are linked to autism and other disorders,” The New York Times reports.

This idea recently gained ground after the U.S. government decided to compensate a family after vaccines contributed to their child’s autism-like disorder.

However, those who encourage vaccination say there is no conclusive link between inoculations and autism, arguing that vaccines are wrongly implicated because autism is diagnosed around the same time a child receives the shots.

Other countries have used extreme measures, including imprisonment, to ensure people are vaccinated against polio.

In the United States, the debate is heated. Some accuse the government of conducting an experiment on children by requiring vaccinations and tying health insurance for the poor to compliance.

Others call the parents who refuse vaccines “sociopaths” for knowingly allowing their children to potentially infect others.

Headline Link: ‘Public Health Risk Seen as Parents Reject Vaccines’

Video: 'Parents Fearing Vaccines May Be Putting Children At Risk'

Background: ‘Court Rules that Vaccine Made Girl Autistic’

Reaction: Vaccine skeptics or 'sociopaths'

Related Topic: ‘Belgium Threatens to Jail Parents Who Refuse to Vaccinate Children’

Reference: Using the Web to Understand Autism


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