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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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  • Vermont. (Score:5, Informative)

    by grub (11606) <slashdot@grub.net> on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:31AM (#39658393) Homepage Journal
    Today Vermont state will be voting today on taking away the philosophical exemption for vaccination.

    You can show your support for this smart idea by contacting
    Patti Komline (802) 867-4232,pkomline@leg.state.vt.us
    Paul Poirier (802) 476-7870 paulpoirier33@gmail.com

    There is a massive anti-vax push here, be sure to show your support if you live in Vermont.
  • by geekoid (135745) <dadinportlandNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:35AM (#39658467) Homepage Journal

    It's the children that died, not the fuck twads that listen to Jenny and watched Oprah.

    What the parent deserve to get is prison time.

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

    And he is a murderer. It was a fraud.

    Being stupid is no defense, but preying on the stupid is something worse: it's evil.

  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Informative)

    by Electricity Likes Me (1098643) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:46AM (#39658651)

    Actually the OP notes that 86% "opted out" of vaccination. That remaining 14% is going to include children who can't be vaccinated, or for whom the vaccine doesn't work (i.e. does not convey immunity, for whatever reason).

    Both those two groups get no real choice in their vulnerability, but they are affected by the 86% who are being parented by idiots.

  • by MarioMax (907837) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:49AM (#39658731)

    For those that want to give the anti-vaccinators something to argue about, the summary title is misleading. From TFA:

    "Diphtheria-Tetanus-acellular-Pertussis vaccine (DTaP) is recommended for all children at 2, 4, 6 and 15–18 months of age, with a pre-school booster between 4 years of age and entry into kindergarten."
    "Infants too young to have completed the primary vaccine series account for the lion’s share of pertussis-related complications, hospitalizations and deaths (at least four in Oregon since 2003). We reviewed data on infants hospitalized with pertussis during a two-year period from March 2009 through February 2011. One hundred forty-six infants with pertussis were reported during this time, and 62 (43%) of them were hospitalized for a median of 3 (range, 0–32) days. The median age at onset for hospitalized cases was 8 (range, 2–25) weeks."

    So in other words, many children hospitalized for whooping cough were too young to have been fully vaccinated.

  • by Anonymous Coward on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:49AM (#39658737)

    It's pretty scary how quickly these diseases pop backup.

    Still, it's well outside the foresight of the selfish and dangerous ant-vac morns. Yes, dangerous. Real harm has been caused and here is proof. I'm not one for frivolous lawsuits but I'd love to see some celebrity vac deniers drug in to civil suits to bring attention to these dangerous lunatics.

    Not being vaccinated was once a social taboo and for some reason it's not anymore. We need to bring that back. Why are these kids allowed to attend school? Allowed to be at daycare? Those who are able to be vaccinated, but are not, need to be excluded from the general population because they are a danger to the general public. Even if they aren't' actively infected, they're a vector.

    Vaccines are a population wide tool and need to be used as such. They don't work if people get to pick and choose and make a dangerous situation for others out of ignorance.

  • Microbiology (Score:4, Informative)

    by overshoot (39700) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:50AM (#39658761)

    In principle... pertussis could be eradicated; but we have a long way to go.

    Ummm .... no. Unlike measles or polio, pertussis is a bacterial disease. Bordatella Pertussis can live without humans. The only way to eradicate it is to sterilize all of its potential habitats (unlike viruses, bacteria don't need hosts per se) and clear the disease from any human carriers.

    Ain't gonna happen.

  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Informative)

    by pheede (37918) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:51AM (#39658771)

    Read up on herd immunity [wikipedia.org]. A large part of the effectiveness of vaccines is that beyond the individual protection they confer on most recipients, they also protect the unvaccinated and the ones that the vaccine wasn't effective for if the overall rate of vaccination is high enough.

    That's why the people who choose not to vaccinate their kids are also increasing the risk for the kids that did get the vaccine but for whom it wasn't effective for some reason, the kids that haven't been vaccinated yet because they're too young, and the kids that for some reason - e.g. compromised immune system - can't get the vaccine at all.

  • Re:Autism (Score:4, Informative)

    by jschmitz (607083) <jeff.g.schmitz@gmail.com> on Thursday April 12, 2012 @11:52AM (#39658795) Homepage
    You are 100% correct - the guy that did that study (autism linked to vaccinations) has been totally discredited - I guess some people didn't get the memo - but yea its really disturbing that some idiot parent that doesn't vaccinate their child put's my child at risk - its totally not cool
  • Re:Autism (Score:2, Informative)

    by infalliable (1239578) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:00PM (#39658973)

    From the actual article, "Of those who
    were completely unvaccinated, 86%
    were because the parents declined vaccination."

    The vast majority of cases are for children who are too young to be completely vaccinated though. It's (intentionally?) misleading.

  • Re:Obvious question: (Score:5, Informative)

    by gaspyy (514539) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:02PM (#39659003)

    Thanks for the link. It's pretty clear:

    Due to negative publicity about this vaccine, the use of the pertussis vaccine decreased in many areas of the world. For example, in Japan, children stopped receiving the pertussis vaccine by 1975. In the three years before the vaccine was discontinued, there were 400 cases of pertussis and 10 deaths from pertussis. In the three years after the pertussis vaccine was discontinued, there were 13,000 cases of pertussis and 113 deaths from pertussis! It should be noted that although the side effects of the old pertussis vaccine were high, no child ever died from pertussis vaccine.

  • Re:Autism (Score:4, Informative)

    by xero314 (722674) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:05PM (#39659057)

    Are you a parent and married? Usually, "mom knows best" and gets her way when it comes to the kids. You can try to fight it, but it'll be a losing battle.

    As a Parent I have but one word to say: Bullshit.

  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Informative)

    by HCase (533294) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:07PM (#39659101)

    Mod parent up.

    People forget that not everyone can be immunized. The people who can't be immunized rely on herd immunity to prevent a disease from spreading to the point that it is dangerous. When you get large number of people opting out of immunization, the herd immunity becomes too weak to prevent a disease from taking hold and spreading. Once it starts spreading, the likelihood for a non-immunized person to catch it can shoot up dramatically.

  • Re:Microbiology (Score:5, Informative)

    by dmr001 (103373) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:15PM (#39659243)
    There's a lot of Bordetella out there, but the only known reservoir of Bordetella pertussis (the causative organism of whooping cough) is in humans. It cannot live without humans. While pertussis is exceedingly contagious, it is a "fastidious" organism, and can survive only a few hours outside of human hosts. It can be eradicated, in theory, by universal vaccination. The fact that it's a bacteria and not a virus is not relevant. (See Lancet. 2006;367(9526):1926, and Hewlett E. Bordetella species. In: Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, 5th ed, Mandell GL, Bennett JE, Dolin R (Eds), Churchill Livingstone, Philadelphia 2000. p.2701.)
  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Informative)

    by berashith (222128) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:16PM (#39659251)

    you forgot to add in the massively increased chances of getting the disease when herd immunity is removed. The increase would not be insignificant.

  • by dmr001 (103373) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:25PM (#39659387)
    Pertussis (booster) vaccination is indeed recommended (by the CDC) for all adults in the United States, ages 21-65, and for adults over 65 if they have contact with small children (http://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/recs/schedules/adult-schedule.htm#hcp). Recommendations are similar in Canada, and Australia, and, I imagine, elsewhere.
  • Re:Autism (Score:5, Informative)

    by nine-times (778537) <nine.times@gmail.com> on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:36PM (#39659599) Homepage

    Nope, because immunizations aren't perfect. They *greatly* reduce the likelihood and severity of infection which stops contagious diseases from spreading, but it's not impossible for an immunized child to become infected and die. When you don't immunize your child, you are not just gambling with your child's life. You're gambling with the lives of the people your child comes in contact with.

  • Re:Vermont. (Score:5, Informative)

    by geekoid (135745) <dadinportlandNO@SPAMyahoo.com> on Thursday April 12, 2012 @12:59PM (#39660047) Homepage Journal

    "A vaccination is an individual decision "
    false
    - Not all vaccines are 100%. This is one reason why herd immunity is critical.
    - These people my not be able to be vaccinated for medical reasons.
    - They may go home to family members you are elderly, or too young to be vaccinated.

    When you don't get vaccinated, you harm others pretty directly, same with smoking, BTW.

  • Re:Other countries? (Score:5, Informative)

    by the eric conspiracy (20178) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @01:18PM (#39660461)

    Yes. For example a world-wide effort to eradicate polio is stymied by Islamic fundamentalists in Nigeria who spreading a rumor that the shots are really intended to sterilize male children.

    http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/world-africa-15819797 [bbc.co.uk]

    Ignorance spread intentionally for political reasons has to be the most evil of all human activities.

  • Re:Autism (Score:4, Informative)

    by GodInHell (258915) on Thursday April 12, 2012 @01:39PM (#39660893) Homepage
    This is me with the Measles Mumps Rhebelum shots. I've had the vaccination six different times in the last ten years because I keep coming up on tests as not immunized. Just doesn't take. Every school I've gone to (three undergrads, a year abroad with two schools, and law school) has had me tested, objected to the lack of MMR vaccination, and insisted on poking me three times trying to fix that. Not gonna happen.

If you had better tools, you could more effectively demonstrate your total incompetence.

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