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Lack of Vaccination Sends Babies In Oregon To the Hospital 1007

Posted by timothy
from the actually-it's-the-illness-that-does dept.
First time accepted submitter dmr001 writes "In its fortnightly Communicable Disease newsletter (PDF), Oregon Public Health officials note increasing cases of pertussis (whooping cough) in infants, with 146 hospitalizations noted in the 2 year period ending March 2011, and at least 4 deaths since 2003. Most cases are attributed to lack of vaccination, with 86% of those due to parents declining the vaccine. 'Most of our cases are occurring in under- or unvaccinated children, so getting these kids vaccinated seems to the most obvious approach to reducing illness. In principle... pertussis could be eradicated; but we have a long way to go.'"
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Lack of Vaccination Sends Babies In Oregon To the Hospital

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  • I work in the NHS (Score:3, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:38AM (#39658505)

    I work in the NHS in the UK and it's amazing how some people don't want to get their kids vaccinated, solely because of the infamous Wakefield study and the subsequent media scare. I saddens me deeply to think that we could eradicate these diseases, but through ignorance and fear a minority of parents decline vaccination for their children. Children die of pertussis, children die of measles. These are achingly preventable, and no child ever asks for the disease. The parent is immune however.

  • by samkass (174571) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:38AM (#39658521) Homepage Journal

    I trust Government regulation based on scientific research more than other kids' parents' rumors, religion and pop culture when it comes to my kids health.

  • by waterbear (190559) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:55AM (#39658857)

    but 14% had been vaccinated

    No, what the article actually said was, that among the _completely unvaccinated_, the _reason_ for lack of vaccination in 86% of cases was parental refusal. That doesn't say that 14% were vaccinated: it says that in 14% of unvaccinated cases the lack of vaccination was _not_
    assigned to parental refusal as the cause.

    I'm afraid this is how numerical data gets mashed into garble.

    After considering the other numerical data the authors of the report concluded that "declining the vaccine carries a whopping risk for pertussis" (p.2).

    -wb-

  • by Beryllium Sphere(tm) (193358) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:57AM (#39658889) Homepage Journal

    There was a time when that was the mainstream belief.

    The odd thing about the anti-vaccination movement is that nobody benefits from it. It's happening without eccentric billionaires funding doublethink tanks to push their economic interests.

    Unless it's part of the general anti-science movement, which benefits people who owe their leadership to the ignorance of their followers.

  • Re:Autism (Score:1, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:11PM (#39659159)

    Yes, but when the dads do get their say, the kids get their vaccines.

  • everyone seems to blame mccarthy for this madness, wrong

    mccarthy is just an idiot, the loudest, dumbest soccer mom

    but this whole madness was started by this evil asshole:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Andrew_Wakefield [wikipedia.org]

    being stupid is no defense. but this guy isn't stupid. his action is an intelligent calculated preying on the stupid

    it was a calculated fraud. andrew wakefield is an evil mass murderer

  • Am I really evil? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by TheRedSeven (1234758) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:31PM (#39659511) Homepage
    I don't vaccinate my kid. Not because I'm afraid of autism (as noted before, the autism link is flat out not there). But because the risks on either side are so minimal that I don't see the point.

    The odds of my kid being exposed to, say, pertussis are about 10%. The odds of her contracting the disease (ie the bacteria taking hold and causing symptoms) is about 0.5%. The odds of her having a serious case of the disease (involving hospitalization) is about 0.01%. The odds of her having any sort of permanent disability/harm are about 0.005%. And the odds of death are about 0.0001%.

    In contrast, the odds of having a mild reaction (mild fever, cold/flu symptoms, localized swelling) to a pertussis vaccine are about 1%. The odds of having a major reaction (lengthy illness, actually getting pertussis, etc) are about .01%. The odds of having a major allergic reaction to the vaccine are about .008%. The odds of having brain swelling, fever that causes brain damage, or other severe outcomes is about 0.005%. And the odds of death are about 0.00005%. And even with the vaccine, the odds of her still contracting the disease are about 2%--with all the odds of the above multiplied by a factor of .02.

    In short, the risk involved in either course of action is ridiculously small--similar odds with winning the Lotto. BUT getting the vaccine costs me money, time (a trip to the doctor), possible fear of the doctor (something I don't want her to be afraid of) and discomfort/pain to my child.

    I've weighed the risks. I've done a cost/benefit analysis for both courses of action. And I (and my wife) choose not to vaccinate. And yes, we have done similar comparisons for each and every vaccine that is offered, from the Diptheria, Pertussis, Tetanus (DTaP) vaccine to the HPV vaccine to the Chicken Pox/Varicella vaccine. And none of them make a definitive case that vaccination is orders-of-magnitude better than non-vaccination.

    I have not ruled out the possibility that I will reevaluate that cost/benefit and risk analysis at some later stage in her life (say, when she goes to pre-school) and come to a different conclusion.


    So again, I ask, what in all these odds and risks and everything, makes me evil for not vaccinating my child?
  • by Mindcontrolled (1388007) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:39PM (#39659663)
    That, in the end, is the dream of guys like roman - down with civilization, give us a survival of the strongest libertarian paradise. Of course, guys like roman think they'd end up as the strongest, getting fellated by their subjects on an hourly basis, when in reality, the local warlord would pull them out of their basements within days and render them into objectivist jerky for the occasional snack.
  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:51PM (#39659889)

    Parent poster did this the right way. I did it the wrong way:

    Start by not having balls. Put up with wife's withholding sex for leverage for 20 years, have 4 kids with no vaccinations.

    Grow balls, file for divorce, go to court to get kids vaccinated.

    You really should do this the way the parent poster said, not the way I said. My way is hard, painful, and very expensive.

    /ashamed

  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Rolgar (556636) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @02:27PM (#39661981)

    My wife is an RN (nurse) and I'm an IT guy. We've had a few disagreements on medical issues, although we're mostly on the same page now.

    My wife was of the opinion that medical professionals are right and always have a good excuse for everything they do. I was rather ambivalent. As we were approaching birth, the issue of circumcision came up. We come from an area where men are usually circumcised, presumably for health reasons although it's really more about that being what everybody else does, and everybody in both of our families has been circumcised. I had read a little on the issue, and had decided that circumcision is not necessary since we aren't doing it for religious reasons. My wife, being a medical professional had encountered a few men who had been circumcised in their 70s, and was certain it was better to circumcise 100% of infants instead of leaving them intact and circumcising the 2% who end up having it done as adults when it became necessary. I fought her hard on the issue, and she gave in. Then she decided to tell her mother, also a nurse, who fought my wife on the issue in favor of cutting even harder than than my wife fought me. In the end my wife had to tell her mom that she didn't get a vote, and she wasn't going to get me to OK it. Now, my wife is firmly in the don't cut camp.

    Concerning vaccinations, my wife leans pro and I am a little less pro, but I haven't fought on the issue because I haven't studied the issue much, and bad effects are probably not cause by getting a shot, although it might be a good idea to find out how certain injections are made.

    Concerning autism, my wife found a treatment for our first daughter's issues which may work on autistic children and adults. Anybody interested in this should research Interactive Metronome therapy. Anybody who knows somebody with autism should look into this. My wife suspects that our daughter's issues were cause by trauma from our daughter getting stuck in the birth canal, not vaccines, genetics, or other issues. I could definitely see this running in families, since circumstances surrounding birth, mother and doctor from one birth to the next could stay the same, making researchers think there is a genetic link when it's a repeatable environmental connection.

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