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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 1:58 pm 
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tinglepants! wrote:
annak wrote:


Tofulish wrote:
Yes, but they're (for the most part) not babies in the US, so the impact of their deaths is easier to disregard and the threat is less significant for babies in the US.


I think this (and the general discussion of polio in India, I don't mean to single you out here) is kind of unfair. I've vaccinated Vi (I think against polio - I'd have to check the records) but it isn't out of regard for the children of India, because she's not in India, she's in southeastern Connecticut. Realistically, bugging my Congresspeople to support aid programs bringing vaccines to developing countries would probably do a whole lot more to help prevent infant mortality than my daughter's following the CDC vax schedule has. Similarly, I don't intend to vaccinate her against yellow fever at the moment, but that doesn't mean I easily disregard the deaths of children in Africa..


I don't think Tofulish meant that we, in the United States, should be more conscientious to vaccinate in order to lessen epidemics in India.


No one has mentioned air travel in this thread, either. Sure, some diseases may be not a problem in one country and a problem in another, but should one country with low-incidence due to vaccination lower its vaccination rate to the point at which it's not protected any more, the incidence of that disease in the previously-protected country may begin to climb due to the massive amount of air travel and the fact that it's pretty easy to pass along airborne diseases in airplanes.

I'm not going to go get vaccinated against diseases that are carried by water and insects that we don't have in the US, but airborne diseases like TB are out of control due to air travel, and things like measles could easily go up here in the US if we stopped vaccinating.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat May 05, 2012 4:18 pm 
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there is a lot of good stuff in this thread. before i had my kids i was definitely leaning towards not vaccinating. our own health challenges changed my opinion very quickly.

moving or traveling to a country where these diseases are still very present and destructive makes the advantage of vaccinating really, really visible: meningitis, pertussis, measles are all very real threats here. Closer to home, my sister in law has tuberculosis and spent TWO YEARS too sick to work or take care of her children, and is luckily doing better now. I think about all the times i had to get my TB/Hep stuff for teaching and thought i was wasting my time. I had no idea what was at stake.

But what really surprises me is that Brazil has recently made great strides to bring down rates of infection, especially against polio, in a free and public health system where once a year, polio drops and other vaccines are given for free at all public schools- show up, bringing your vaccine booklet, and keep your kid on schedule, no matter where you are. The military brings clinics to isolated communities. In cities, nurses come to your house if you can't go to the public health clinic to administer vaccines on schedule. I am sure there are some people who refuse vaccines for religious reasons (there are some communities that refuse them) but most people are happy to protect their kids against any possible infection.
On the other side, I know people in the US for whom the cost of vaccination/lack of insurance has been a big factor in their decision to not vaccinate their children, and the easily-available fearmongering about vaccines made them feel better about their decision. It boggles my mind that cost is a factor, even for a few. This is not the way things should be.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 7:26 am 
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Someone in one of my IRL groups just posted that she isn't giving her kid the polio vax because her MIL had it and it wasn't that big a deal (her MIL is in India so it is possible). My brain may have just exploded out of the back of my head.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 7:50 am 
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Its so odd being in the minority on a vax debate :)

The part that amazes me is that these parents do so much research to avoid health risks - to the point that I feel neglectful if I bring food in plastic rather than glass or metal hahaha - but are weighing unproven risks of a vaccine against the (albeit small) risk of a disease that could actually kill your kidlet. I really respect these women, so it does make me check and recheck my beliefs, but I still can't see that the risk of polio is so minor that it makes sense not to risk the side-effects of a vax.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 7:50 am 
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Oh my Lard. Tell her to use Google for like 5 minutes.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 8:20 am 
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Unfortunately, while Google is good at finding information, it is also superbly good at finding misinformation.

My facebook vegan group is exploding right now with anti-vax stuff.

And Tofulish, the research stuff is the crazy part, isn't it? I think part of the problem is that most well-educated people know enough to do basic research, but not how to critically analyze a scientific paper. And they shouldn't have to unless that is part of their job, but then you have to trust someone else's interpretation. And that means either trusting government and/or doctors or trusting friends, stories, other doctors (cause not all docs are going to say the same thing and not all docs know how to read a paper either, but they should).


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 10:34 am 
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Heh, the local natural baby list I'm on was just asking about anti-vax-friendly pediatricians and I was basically using it as a list of peds to avoid - relieved mine hasn't come up yet! (She's hospital-affiliated so it's..unlikely anyway)

That reminds, me, though, I need to do some research because we're thinking of some Asian travel next year.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 1:28 pm 
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annak wrote:
Heh, the local natural baby list I'm on was just asking about anti-vax-friendly pediatricians and I was basically using it as a list of peds to avoid - relieved mine hasn't come up yet! (She's hospital-affiliated so it's..unlikely anyway)


When we asked our midwife for pediatrician recommendations, they IMMEDIATELY started recommending peds who were okay with us not vaxxing. We looked at her seriously for a second and said, "wow, you really don't know us." It was so bizarre that they thought we were anti-vax.

In any case, we wound up with that ped who was "anti-vax friendly" and basically are doing on-schedule vaccinations - annak, those peds are hospital affiliated, too, so I don't know if anti-vax friendly means anything about hospital affiliation. The FB/IRL parent groups I'm a part of are constantly talking about potentially being anti-vaccinations (and pro-homeopathy, oy) and I just find it flabbergasting. Is the problem that people are too comfortable that they don't think diseases that will kill or maim your kids are real?

My MIL got in a big fight with my husband the other day because he mentioned he was taking Malka for her second flu shot. Because she's even further out in wackadoo land she thinks the flu shot is a government conspiracy to give my child autism.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 2:34 pm 
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kimba wrote:
And that means either trusting government and/or doctors or trusting friends, stories, other doctors (cause not all docs are going to say the same thing and not all docs know how to read a paper either, but they should).


That is exactly right. The thread today, where seriously, I was one of 3 people who were pro-vax (2 of whom said they do it bc they travel to countries were it is still found) was full of personal anecdata - and some of it is heartbreaking. Like stories about how in India and Cuba there were polio outbreaks after the doctors had come around giving all the kids vaccines (with the dead virus). I don't know about Cuba, but in India those stories have been discredited, but of course that is just more proof that the government is covering them up. That said, there is legitimate information out there - like that oral vaccines aren't used any more because there was a tiny risk of contracting polio (I remember getting the sugar cube in school!) and that any cases in the US in the last 5 years or so are linked to that. And of course, the pertussis vaccine turned out to be less effective than hoped, which puts people who thought they were immune at risk of contracting it. Most of the failures, to me point to the government acting very quickly to correct even small issues and also that the risk of the vax is that it might not protect you for a lifetime, not that it is actually going to give you something nasty. And of course for the big issue - that vaccines contain poison - I see no evidence at all.

There is going to be a movie night to screen "The Greater Good" http://www.greatergoodmovie.org/ and I look forward to seeing it. I am really curious. These women are really smart and are educating themselves well - they're reading books, not just using Google - and they are still coming out anti-vax.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:02 pm 
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I can't get over someone actually personally knowing a polio survivor and deciding that it's not that bad. I just spent a bit of time with my uncle's cousin, who had paralytic polio as a child in the 1940s. She's been very successful despite her disability, but life can be quite hard for her due to her mobility issues, and hearing about her struggles is a great reminder of why I choose to vaccinate.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:10 pm 
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The oral polio vaccine is still used in some places, fwiw. I think it's pretty rare, but in places where there are outbreaks, it's used sometimes as the efficacy is greater. An old friend and his wife work for MSF in part, administering polio drops, in Sri Lanka.

Also, re Google, I just meant that she would quickly be able to see the potential for harm that polio carries.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:12 pm 
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Can I just say that I was a little nervous to click on the link, but am really relieved at how pro-science you all are.

And as a parent of a child with autism, I take great offense at people talking about that like it's the worst thing that can happen to a child, and that they would risk the death or disfigurement of their child just to avoid it. My kid with autism rocks my world. She is the sweetest, smartest, most creative person I know. And while there are times when i wish, for her sake, that life could be easier for her. I would not change a hair on her head, or a neuron in her brain. Fork those people.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Thu Oct 25, 2012 3:18 pm 
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DEG wrote:
Can I just say that I was a little nervous to click on the link, but am really relieved at how pro-science you all are.

And as a parent of a child with autism, I take great offense at people talking about that like it's the worst thing that can happen to a child, and that they would risk the death or disfigurement of their child just to avoid it. My kid with autism rocks my world. She is the sweetest, smartest, most creative person I know. And while there are times when i wish, for her sake, that life could be easier for her. I would not change a hair on her head, or a neuron in her brain. Fork those people.


As an adult with Asperger's, I just wanted to say that I loved this comment.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 2:44 pm 
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My holistic mom's group is having a pox party. But that isn't even the crazy part. The crazy part is that people are taking their 5 month olds to it, saying "better the pox than a vax!" And no one has pointed out that chickenpox in infants can be life-threatening. Sure there are some benefits bc they get the antibodies of the mother, but still...
http://www.rxlist.com/script/main/art.a ... key=152064

I have no words. Just no.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:08 pm 
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Larisa wrote:
DEG wrote:
Can I just say that I was a little nervous to click on the link, but am really relieved at how pro-science you all are.

And as a parent of a child with autism, I take great offense at people talking about that like it's the worst thing that can happen to a child, and that they would risk the death or disfigurement of their child just to avoid it. My kid with autism rocks my world. She is the sweetest, smartest, most creative person I know. And while there are times when i wish, for her sake, that life could be easier for her. I would not change a hair on her head, or a neuron in her brain. Fork those people.


As an adult with Asperger's, I just wanted to say that I loved this comment.


+1 yummy to both of you.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 3:33 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
My holistic mom's group is having a pox party. But that isn't even the crazy part. The crazy part is that people are taking their 5 month olds to it, saying "better the pox than a vax!" And no one has pointed out that chickenpox in infants can be life-threatening. Sure there are some benefits bc they get the antibodies of the mother, but still...
http://www.rxlist.com/script/main/art.a ... key=152064

I have no words. Just no.

Wow. Is there anything CPS could do about this? It seems like child endangerment to me.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:14 pm 
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A friend of mine's daughter just had to have surgery for chiari malformation. While in the PICU, she shared a room with a 6 year old girl who had contracted HIB. She had been fighting it for over a month already, and had a port put in that day. It got into her spinal fluid, and she may not live. Her parents did not vaccinate her, and this is the result. Choosing not to vax is not a risk free proposition.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 5:40 pm 
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Wow DEG, that is heartbreaking.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:10 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
My holistic mom's group is having a pox party. But that isn't even the crazy part. The crazy part is that people are taking their 5 month olds to it, saying "better the pox than a vax!" And no one has pointed out that chickenpox in infants can be life-threatening. Sure there are some benefits bc they get the antibodies of the mother, but still...
http://www.rxlist.com/script/main/art.a ... key=152064

I have no words. Just no.

I hope they don't encounter any adults who haven't gotten chickenpox yet. That would be terrible. There are few valid reasons for risking someone else's life because you are irrationally afraid of vaccines.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:12 pm 
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DEG wrote:
A friend of mine's daughter just had to have surgery for chiari malformation. While in the PICU, she shared a room with a 6 year old girl who had contracted HIB. She had been fighting it for over a month already, and had a port put in that day. It got into her spinal fluid, and she may not live. Her parents did not vaccinate her, and this is the result. Choosing not to vax is not a risk free proposition.

That poor little girl...The pertussis site has some interviews with parents who did not vaccinate and lost children because of it.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:15 pm 
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Seriously, tofulish, you need to call DYFS on these people. This is just unconscionable. I am so glad Malka and I never wound up hanging out with this group and risking Malka's wellbeing.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 6:17 pm 
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Livi is almost entirely vaxed as according to regulations except she needs one more hep b and I went with the hep a so she's had one of those and needs 2 more. Now that she's 6 it all feels slightly less scary.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:30 pm 
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I am not going to call DCP&P on loving, caring families, just because I don't agree with one set of decisions they are making.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:40 pm 
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Tofulish wrote:
I am not going to call DCP&P on loving, caring families, just because I don't agree with one set of decisions they are making.

Hopefully, none of these loving, caring families will kill anyone else with their selfish, irrational decision.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sat Nov 10, 2012 7:50 pm 
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Did the parents grow up with "pox parties?" I got chicken pox that way, kind of, might have been more we all got it at the same time from a sick kid at school, so we were sick together. This was in Germany in the 70s, on a military base. We all had all the recommended vaccinations, but I think many a lot of parents today have these memories so they don't think chicken pox is a big deal.

Re: affordability--I don't buy this argument as often as I hear it as a reason not to vax. School systems help with this pretty much everywhere. County health centers will usually vaccinate children for free or very low cost (like $10, that can be waived). I got my TB test at the center here because it was convenient. They charged me $35, but there were signs up everywhere about what was free for children, some of which required no income qualification or anything other than walking in. They also do free flu shots for anyone who is high risk.

At the beginning of the year, my district has a shot clinic for new students at the elementary schools. It's all free.

Maybe it is more challenging in some areas, but, for the most part, since this is seen as a wider public health issues, getting vaccine access isn't usually a problem. I'm more inclined to believe that anti-vaxxers tack this on as an argument afterthought. Schools require these vaccines for enrollment, and enrollment is required by law unless you fill out exemption paperwork. If you try to enroll an unvaxed kid, they help sort it out. Is Virginia really super progressive on this front?

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