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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:39 am 
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j-dub wrote:
Plus, the first thing I found on mothering.com is a thread where a parent is asking how to fake a vaccination record for their young child. Here is a thread in which women posit that vaccines harm all people based on, well, a feeling? Here is a thread that quotes Dr Wakefield's infamous study and declares that autism can be prevented by a healthy GI tract. Etc. Etc.

These people may be researching extensively but they are certainly not researching well.


Yeah, that's what I actually meant to say, rather than that eyeball thing.

(But that's WHY I wanted to stab my eyeballs out, and it reinforces my point about them being dangerously misinformed. If anyone still cites Wakefield as anything but a cautionary tale, they are by definition misinformed.)

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 1:02 am 
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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.

Aw, come on. Please don't make it sound like I'm advocating calling CPS (or DCP&P or whatever) because of the choice not to cloth diaper or something. I don't think it's unreasonable to say that making your baby get an infectious disease is negligent and cruel.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 1:23 am 
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It's not unreasonable (I'd probably say just negligent, though), but more importantly, that's why the agency exists. I don't think it's at all an overboard reaction for a social worker with a little authority to come say, yo, that's not cool. They err on the side of less intervention, not more. If someone came into my office and told me this, I would feel a duty to report it. Loving parents occasionally do totally crazy shiitake. Hopefully you have at least tried to reason with them.

I value parental rights, but there is a line somewhere. And even though I think people should have the right not to vaccinate (as long as they are open about it so I can keep my kid away from theirs!), purposefully exposing an infant to a potentially disfiguring or fatal disease is just too far.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 1:51 am 
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i dont vax, and even i wouldn't expose an infant to a disease on purpose! i hate this thread, because it's a very one-sided discussion, but jeez, infants don't even have a fully developed immune system, i'm lost for words and my face is all screwed up thinking about why someone would try to infect their own baby.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 3:16 am 
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Vantine wrote:
I also don't think that purposely exposing an infant to disease is quite the same thing as veganism. It's not really a fair comparison.

They thought Beet had rickets (vegan-induced rickets!) ;p or some other kind of vegan-induced deformity or disease and that's why everybody went on a vegan witch-hunt. (And even though now everyone knows Beet is fine and his leg-thing had nothing to do with us or our diet, there is still a lot of tension at our local surgery (and we can't get transferred to a different one).) It didn't even occur to my MIL, a lifelong vegetarian, that they would think it had anything to do with veganism and she had no idea in some people's minds, veganism = disease and malnutrition.
(And then there is my cousin who had CPS called on her for being Muslim, and because CPS were called, they had to pay a visit (their policy is if a call is made, they investigate no matter what the claim) and have her family on file forever (also their policy, again no matter what the claim), although that is not the same thing because nobody said her kids were diseased or anything.)

Obviously, I don't think calling CPS is the answer here. It really seems to be a gut reaction on a lot of parenting threads to say, "call CPS!" and after having gone through that myself (my MIL didn't call CPS, just the health visitor, but they got involved in the investigation anyway, although not for long), I really think it should be saved for the abusers and molesters and hardcore neglectors. I know people think infants going to a pox-party is abuse. I just think it's very stupid, even if done with the best of intentions (and it's something that is (or was within the last 20 years) very socially acceptable). Not the same thing as not chaging your kid's diaper (ever -- I saw some awful documentary where this dunce-cake dad basically acted like his kid wasn't there) or putting a cigarette out on your kid's arm.

As for getting chicken pox as an older kid, I had it at 15. Every chicken pock on my face was also a zit, except for the ones by my eyes. It only lasted maybe 5 days, though (and my mom sent me back to summer day camp after 3 or 4 days!), but I hated it.

And on to another vaccination topic:
What do you guys think about vaccines during pregnancy? I've been told to get the flu jab soon (I told them I wanted to wait until the second trimester) and Whooping Cough (!!) at 28 weeks (the whooping cough thing is new, but recommended for women during every pregnancy -- I guess it's on the rise due to the rising numbers of non-vaccinated kids and babies have been getting it before their first set of jabs and this will get the kid antibodies). I kind of want to skip the flu jab altogether -- not because of the alleged miscarriage risk, but because I read they are kind of bogus as far as preventing the flu (because they only hit certain strains), but then again, I might as well get it to prevent the midwives from nagging me. ;p I live in the middle of nowhere and don't get out much, so I'm not likely to get exposed to anything (mind you, I did get the flu when I was pregnant with Raygold, though!).
But anyway, did any of you guys get vaxed during your pregnancies?

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 4:51 am 
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I got the flu vax while pregnant.

Just fyi, the pertussiss outbreaks are bc the vaccine doesn't confer lifelong immunity. The people getting it are adults who have often been vaxed as children. Both my husband and I got the vax when L was born and at our hospital they were recommending everyone who comes near your NB be revaxed (grandparents etc).

I am with TCC; CPS is an underfunded, understaffed agency that should be used in the worst cases. Some could argue that cosleeping or not strapping your kid into a stroller properly or not rear-facing your child's car seat before 1or heaven forfend, smoking near them is exposing them to a risk of disfigurement or death. And on some level they'd be right. But parents do expose their kids to risks, and mostly we don't call CPS to give them a stern talking to because that isn't CPS' purpose. You call CPS because you believe the children should be out of the situation, as in taken from their homes, because the parents aren't doing their job so the state needs to take over. As TCC says, once there is a file opened on you it doesn't go away.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 5:19 am 
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Tofulish wrote:
Just fyi, the pertussiss outbreaks are bc the vaccine doesn't confer lifelong immunity. The people getting it are adults who have often been vaxed as children. Both my husband and I got the vax when L was born and at our hospital they were recommending everyone who comes near your NB be revaxed (grandparents etc).

Yeah, but what struck me as kind of crazy, is that they are recommending the pertussis vax every time you are pregnant! (They explained why, but it still seems weird.)

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 5:36 am 
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That is interesting. That isn't the US recommendation (see below). I wonder if it is because it would give the newborn added protection because of maternal antibodies and it doesn't hurt to vax more often than every 10 years (which is the US Tdap standard).

Here is what the CDC recommends: http://www.cdc.gov/pertussis/about/prevention.html

Quote:
Pregnant women who have not been previously vaccinated with Tdap should get one dose of Tdap preferably during the third trimester or late second trimester — or immediately postpartum before leaving the hospital or birthing center with a newborn. By getting Tdap during pregnancy, maternal pertussis antibodies transfer to the newborn, likely providing protection against pertussis in early life, before the baby starts getting DTaP vaccines. Tdap will also protect the mother at time of delivery, making her less likely to transmit pertussis to her infant.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:35 am 
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Children who are not vaccinated are about 8 times as likely to catch pertussis. Because it is so contagious, they can then spread it like wildfire.

And just to be clear, having a reasonable debate does not mean that every argument on either side is granted equal weight. There are not any valid, scientifically backed reasons to not vaccinate. You can fall back on religious belief or fear but you can't really have a discussion about that.

Getting medical advice from Mothering.com is not advisable unless you practice faith-based healing.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:46 am 
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I got chicken pox in 7th grade when I was 12. I was out for about 1/2 of the year. I spent a week unable to see because my eyes were swollen shut.

There is also the fact that once you have chicken pox, you could end up with shingles which is horrible and painful. There is a vaccine for that which is recommended for older adults.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 7:53 am 
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The Mothering comment was a joke. That said, it is a useful support website for many people and not limited to faith based healing. There is only one forum for snake handling and laying on of hands. <------------JOKE.

I just wish we could have all sides present their information without having people calling each other stupid.

For example, one of the people in the group didn't give her child the polio vax bc she points out that all the cases in the US of polio in the last 5 years have been related to the live virus which was given in oral suspension. Although it is a very rare complication, as a result, they now only give the shot with the dead virus. Her point is that based on that evidence and the fact that they don't go to countries where polio is present, she doesn't feel like her children need the vax. If they were traveling it would be another story. I don't actually think that is so unreasonable, although I personally don't feel comfortable not vaxing Leela.

These are not stupid people.

Its easy to pretend that everyone who disagrees with you is an idiot (or religious), but sometimes they just disagree. And if you want to change minds, you can't do it with shaming and fearmongering. That is part of the reason why many people don't trust the medical establishment, because they feel like they are being talked down to, dismissed and their questions aren't being answered.

If you want everyone to vax their kids, give them the reasons to, listen to their reasons and treat them respectfully and civilly. Then you can have a meaningful dialogue and both move to common ground.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:29 am 
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So she in not giving the dead virus based on what happened wit a live virus?


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:53 am 
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kimba wrote:
So she in not giving the dead virus based on what happened wit a live virus?


No. Given that there haven't been any cases in the US not linked to the oral vax, she feels confident that her kids are not at risk of contracting polio.

I'm not agreeing with her choice, just saying that she isn't an idiot and she isn't coming to her decision from a place of "faith based healing" or ignorance. People can and do make decisions for themselves that I don't agree with, and some of them even do affect me and other people. But just because they do, doesn't mean those decisions aren't right for them.

All I am saying is it would be nice to have a debate that didn't rely on treating the other side like they're a bunch of ignorant snakehandlers.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 8:58 am 
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Play nice, please! This thread is not my favorite.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 9:47 am 
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TheCrabbyCrafter wrote:
did any of you guys get vaxed during your pregnancies?


I got the flu vaccine while pregnant and then again last week while breastfeeding (actually, I literally got it while breastfeeding.. ha). I only really get it because I work in a hospital. I don't think it makes sense from a public health perspective to want every healthy person who lives in a rural area and doesn't spend time with immunocompromised people to get the flu vaccine. This year and last year I requested the thimerosal-free version because mercury does cross the placenta and end up in breast milk. There is certainly no evidence that the tiny amount of mercury in a single vaccine is going to harm your baby at all, but mercury does accumulate over your lifetime and I figured since it's available, I might as well avoid mercury when possible.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 10:27 am 
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Vantine wrote:
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.


Just about the most dangerous thing a person can do is drive a car. They are putting themselves, anyone else in the car, and everyone in the community who uses sidewalks and roads at risk of death and injury. Most car journeys can be characterized as selfish and irrational, yet we don't report people to authority figures for making such dangerous choices.

I think that making blanket statements about the risk of health care choices is alarmist and unreasonable because it is so difficult to make such choices.

I am 1 million percent pro science and pro vaccinations. I am a specialist in one field of science and I trust specialists in disease and health to make proper immunization recommendations for me and my child to follow. However! I am a USian who lives in Norway. The vaccination schedule and the recommended vaccines are different in the two countries. One glaring example relevant to this discussion is that in Norway, the chickenpox vaccine is not part of the standard vaccine calendar. Children go to pre-school starting at 1 year, and when a child has chickenpox, as long as they do not have a fever they are expected to go to pre-school to expose the other children. This is a matter of public health policy. I don't think the Norwegian disease experts are better/worse than those in the US, I think there are multiple solutions to the same problem. This isn't relevant for 5 month old children- they wouldn't be exposed except by their older siblings by this mechanism of exposure as they don't go to pre-school yet.

We are planning to travel to the US soon to visit my family. The normal vaccination schedule here would have Littlemap getting his first vaccines at 3 months, but we are starting at 2 months instead to confer some immunity to whooping cough while we are in the US. Also here they don't recommend adults to get the whooping cough updates, but I am choosing to while my sweetheart is not choosing to. I don't think either of us is "right"- I'm going by the US recommendations and he is going by the Norwegian recommendations. Here, they don't recommend pregnant people to get any vaccines unless there is a special reason for it (working around sick people or some other special reason). They also don't recommend people with no special reasons to get the flu vaccine.

I have experience of the recommendations being so different in two countries, so I can see how people can think that only getting certain vaccines or not getting vaccines when they are pregnant or not getting children vaccinated at 2 months but waiting a little while can be a good choice. It can be consistent with the recommendations of other countries, and isn't necessarily negligent or shoddy decision making.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:27 am 
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Re: vaccines during pregnancy: I got both a flu shot and a pertussis shot during my second pregnancy, and a flu shot in my first. (Pertussis boosters weren't widely recommended yet with E.) The flu shot both times was the dead virus, no preservative (thimerosal). The second time it was done at work by a traveling nurse and she told me that they aren't allowed to administer the one with the preservatives to pregnant women.

My feeling on the flu shot is that I would like to get 0 flus in a season. It does not bother me that the vaccine only prevents some strains of flu. Nothing's perfect, and I'm willing to accept partial protection from some strains over nothing.

Of course, I spend a LOT of time in public, in close contact with other people. I might feel differently if I lived in the middle of nowhere.

If people don't mind sharing: do your kids receive flu shots/will they when they're old enough? E's birthday is right at the start of flu season, so both this year and last, he got a flu shot at his yearly checkup. It's not really for him so much as it's for his brother... Especially last year when M was going to be brand new during flu season and E was bringing crepe home from preschool.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:41 am 
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No one has suggested anyone is stupid or less than caring. That is an unfair characterization designed to distract. However, decisions that smart, caring people make can be less than wise.

Car trips are also not quite the same thing as not vaccinating. That is another comparison that does not make sense. If you accept the overwhelming evidence that vaccines are safe and effective, it's not a hard choice to make. I'm not interested in arguing about whether or not 2 months versus 3 months makes sense. The difference between the vaccination schedules in any two countries is different than whether or not any of those countries would suggest that you not vaccinate.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:49 am 
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j-dub wrote:
Anti-vaxers rely on herd immunity whilst also weakening it.


I think this is the thing that peas me off the most. Got my flu shot last week!

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 11:52 am 
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Does anyone have any research into a breakdown of anti-vaxers based on class/income? I would love to see some numbers there.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:00 pm 
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That would be most interesting, PC. I'd be confident enough to place a bet on what those numbers would look like.

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 12:13 pm 
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Here's something I found, PP, and I'd be interested to see other numbers, more recent. http://blogs.discovermagazine.com/inter ... vaccinate/

With a quote that really sums up a lot of my concerns with this movement.

"If vaccine rates start to drop, who’s going to get affected?” Peter Hotez asks. “It’s going to be people who live in poor, crowded conditions. So it’s going to affect the poorest people in our country.”

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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 2:33 pm 
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pandacookie wrote:
Does anyone have any research into a breakdown of anti-vaxers based on class/income? I would love to see some numbers there.


http://www.immunizationinfo.org/science ... d-children

"In 2001, 62.8% of US children 19 to 35 months of age were fully immunized with all the vaccines that were recommended at that time. It was estimated that 3 children per thousand had never received any vaccines (unvaccinated). The study found marked differences in the characteristics between children who were completely unvaccinated, those that either received some vaccines, and those who were fully vaccinated as recommended.

Children who had received some but not all recommended doses (undervaccinated) tended to be black and had a younger, often-unmarried mother who had less education than fully immunized children. These underimmunized children were more likely to live in a household below the poverty level, with more children, and had moved across state lines.

Compared to undervaccinated children, unvaccinated children were more likely to be non-Hispanic white, have a mother who was older, married and who had a college degree. These children were more likely to live in a household with an annual income exceeding $75,000.

Compared to fully immunized children, unvaccinated children were more likely to be non-Hispanic white and live in larger households. Educational levels, family income and other factors did not differ.

Almost half (48%) of the parents of unvaccinated children expressed a concern about vaccine safety compared to only 5% of parents of undervaccinated children. In addition, 71% of parents of unvaccinated children indicated that medical doctors have little influence over vaccination decisions for their children compared to 23% of parents of undervaccinated children.

Many children with no vaccinations lived in counties in California, Illinois, New York, Washington, Pennsylvania, Texas, Oklahoma, Colorado, Utah, and Michigan."


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 4:51 pm 
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@cc, we had a trip and a half with our local surgery about the pertussis vaccine. Our GP is wonderful, but the practice nurse (who generally gives the vaccines) is a bit of a bisque. She said that the vaccines were unnecessary for Karl and myself since Freya had 2 doses of the DTaP she was protected (which is only partially true). I explained that we had contacted the health department in Michigan, where there was an outbreak and they advised us to have all the adults in close contact vaccinated. In the end, our GP had to instruct her to give us the vaccine. Now, some 3 months later, there is are outbreaks in the UK too. Anyway...end rant.

mapmapmap, the differences between the US and the UK have been interesting to note. Virtually no one here gets the varicella vax and I don't know anyone who gets the rotavirus here either (neither is on the NHS schedule, as is neither Hep A or B). I considered the rotavirus one just because the kiddos I've worked with got so very sick often when getting it. There's a different Meningitis vaccine too, that babies can get earlier that the US one, for which I was glad.

We've done an altered schedule based on my husband's poor reactions to a vaccine, and some studies indicating that single vaccines *may* be less likely to produce side effects, such as febrile seizures, than the large combo vaccines. F's up to date except for the polio vaccine, which she will receive in the next few months. We likely would've skipped the diptheria vaccine, but since the dtap is the only way to be immunized against Pertussis, we went ahead. Glad that we are almost done. She's done well, but the Hib/MenC has made her quite sick both times. Not looking forward to the final dose.

The trouble I find often with these discussions is the polarized nature of the discussion. Both sides seem to claim "child abuse" on the part of the other side. The mothering.com folks gasp that we're vaxing, the moms at the playgroup think I'm nuts that we don't just follow the NHS schedule.

While it is a possibly fatal disease, the death rate in the US for chicken pox, is something like .0002% Even the rate for serious complications is incredibly low (around 11,000/3 million cases per year). I wouldn't take a baby to a pox party, but I can see where people might consider taking an older child if they believed that the immunity provided by the virus itself were greater than that provided by the vaccine.


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 Post subject: Re: Can we talk about vaccinations here?
PostPosted: Sun Nov 11, 2012 6:49 pm 
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I posted a link waaay back on this thread that seemed to indicate that deliberate non-vaxers (like, mothering.com hippie types) were a tiny percentage, and that most non-vaxers were just plain ol' poor people. Having seen some of the bills from the pediatrician, I can totally imagine this. We are fortunate to have totally free healthcare, but wow, $800 for a regular checkup with vaxes otherwise? Not to mention the several hours waiting at the ped's office always takes.

The chicken pox vaccine hasn't been around long enough to know whether a 1-year-old who got it will be more, less, or as likely to get shingles after middle age as somebody who got the disease chickenpox. (Though I believe I read that there is evidence that people who have been vaccinated and get chickenpox later in life despite vaccination, as they sometimes do because really it's not a particularly effective vaccine, have milder cases of it than those who did not get it--not surprising.)

And Vi got her flu shot in September. I haven't gotten one yet, though. Also, after jumping through my asparagushole for three hours getting the stupid vax card filled out from the pediatrician the other day, I dropped her off at base childcare where she promptly got a cold, so I'm less worried about unvaxed kids with polio running around than I am about the jackasparagi who drop their kids off in daycare despite being sick with more conventional stuff. (Which is neither here nor there RE the vax debate, I'm just venting. Venting with a sore throat.)


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