The topic of infant vaccination in the United States continues to be a divisive and challenging decision for parents. To ensure an unbiased examination, it is essential to thoroughly contemplate and assess numerous viewpoints. Bearing this in mind, this article will examine the advantages and disadvantages of vaccinating adolescents, present different opinions and potential solutions in the ongoing discourse regarding which infants should receive vaccinations, and offer supporting data for arguments from both perspectives.
One perspective supports strict regulation of infant vaccinations, emphasizing potential medical consequences and negative effects. This viewpoint has backing from many Americans, including parents and some physicians, who assert that infant vaccinations might result in health issues instead of preventing them. Meanwhile, another perspective known as selective vaccination is favored by most American parents and certain doctors, contending that parents should have the power to choose what is optimal for their child’s well-being, giving priority to it over compulsory immunization.
There is a debate among American parents and medical professionals regarding the importance of mandatory vaccination for infants in order to protect them from diseases and improve public health. Those who support strict regulations on infant vaccinations argue that there are potential medical risks involved. Parents who believe their infants have suffered negative effects from vaccines emphasize the chance of complications. Consequently, these parents insist on receiving thorough education about the vaccination process, precise control over dosage, and an unwavering commitment to ensuring their infants’ welfare.
In their study, Haugen and Musser (2012) suggest that mandating the vaccination of children could increase their vulnerability to developing syndromes, disorders, and diseases. According to the authors, there is a link between the excessive use of vaccines and higher rates of conditions such as autism, attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, and other neurological problems in children. Essentially, giving infants a greater number of vaccines raises the likelihood of experiencing negative medical consequences.
Parents can better understand the significance of vaccines by educating themselves about the potential health effects that vaccinations might have on their child. Haugen and Musser (2012) propose that acquiring knowledge about possible health risks before immunizing a baby improves parental awareness, protects medically ineligible children, and ultimately decreases the occurrence of severe health problems.
When Haugen & Musser (2012) observed that parents are mobilizing against the state policy, they are suggesting that a large number of citizens will not comply with the mandatory policy of immunization. Instead, these individuals will gather together and collectively petition to reverse the policy. If parents conduct thorough research on the vaccination process, some of them will gain a deeper understanding and will be empowered to make an informed decision regarding their child’s health.
While Haugen and Musser (2012) utilize logical reasoning to defend their arguments, others rely on data to emphasize the significance of comprehending the vaccination procedure and disparities. Dr. Jack Rabin (2012), in his expert testimony, acknowledges that vaccines have not been directly associated with autism. However, he suggests that the escalating number of vaccinations given to children necessitates thorough analysis and should be administered gradually over time.
According to Rabin (2012), the number of vaccinations given to infants has significantly increased. Previously, only eight vaccinations were administered to infants aged five to six months, but now there are 29 vaccinations given at birth. This increase in frequency and quantity indicates a higher rate of vaccination administration. However, if vaccines are tailored based on an infant’s medical prognosis for a specific antidote, the number of vaccines given may decrease as fewer infants will have positive responses to immunization.
According to Rabin (2012), there has been a significant increase in the number of vaccinations required for infants compared to 60 years ago, and this trend continues. Rabin (2012) presents statistical data to acknowledge the rise in vaccines, educate parents about the heightened risks that infants face from vaccinations, and advocate for delaying drug administration after birth to ensure children’s safety. Instead of administering 29 injections at birth, implementing a vaccination interval plan based on an infant’s prognosis would lead to fewer adverse side effects, increased parental confidence in vaccinations, and improved public health stability.
Selective vaccination is the belief in giving parents the choice to determine which vaccines their baby should receive. Numerous parents support the idea of having control over their child’s vaccinations. Sarah Glazer (2010) suggests that those who wish to vaccinate their child should consult with a medical professional, undergo diagnostic examination, and fully understand the vaccination process.
In his 2010 study, Glazer suggests that vaccinating newborn babies could disrupt their immune system by introducing a virus into their bloodstream. This may lead to higher chances of illness, hinder the natural development of the infant’s immune system, and potentially activate autism in those with genetic susceptibility. Additionally, Glazer’s 2012 research reveals findings from the CDC indicating an autism rate of one in every 150 individuals, which is three times greater than their previous estimate for the general population in 2004.
Many doctors and parents believe that administering the same vaccinations to all infants immediately after birth would result in a significant increase in autism cases. However, Glazer recommends that although she does not fully oppose immunization, parents should seek extensive consultation to tailor treatment for their children and eliminate any vaccines that may have adverse effects.
If parents are not comfortable with the immunization process, they won’t have confidence in the treatment. This could lead to paranoia about their child’s health and the possibility of making decisions about vaccine selection that are not in the child’s best medical interest. While Glazer recommends seeking extensive consultation with physicians, others argue that even with consultation, doctors often fail to adequately address the parents’ questions.
According to Shana Kluck (2010), it is not appropriate to mandate vaccination without the parent’s complete understanding and consent. Kluck states that the ultimate authority over a child should lie with their parents. Kluck also acknowledges that physicians have the knowledge and expertise gained from attending medical school to address patients’ concerns and provide thorough explanations. Therefore, when doctors dismiss parents’ concerns without fully answering their questions, Kluck (2010) praises their ability to treat patients, manage the consequences of medical procedures, and ensure effective measures for maintaining patients’ well-being.
Despite specialized physicians stating that a certain medical procedure is in a patient’s best interest based on their prognosis, it is not always reliable to assume so. Even when the medical team does not provide specific details, there is still room for error. According to Kluck (2010), parents often conduct their own research on vaccination treatments after receiving advice from medical professionals. This is because some physicians can only offer general statements and vague medical information. Therefore, parents must take drastic measures to educate themselves and protect their child.
In order to support her argument, Kluck (2010) uses the example of parents becoming desensitized to yearly doctor’s office visits. She states that these visits have become so routine that parents are no longer aware of the potential dangers of side effects from immunizations. Kluck also suggests that if citizens allow the government to disregard their parental rights and fail to insist on a thorough assessment to rule out the impact of their child’s genetics, then infants who are genetically predisposed may be at risk of developing a health disorder due to extensive vaccination measures.
Most medical professionals insist on the importance of immunizations for public safety and support the idea that they should be mandatory. Destefano and Chen (2001), in their academic journal, discuss various worldwide clinical research studies that have found no definitive connection between infant vaccinations and the autism epidemic. They argue that any claims suggesting a link between vaccines and autism lack substantial evidence. By making this information accessible to parents and highlighting the safety of vaccinations based on fundamental studies, widespread immunization can be achieved. The government also mandates adolescent vaccinations to prevent the spread of diseases, protect public health, and avoid any potential outbreaks or epidemics.
According to Destefeano and Chen (2001), autism is typically present from birth. They argue that the idea of immunizations causing autism is highly unlikely and that there is no current evidence linking vaccines to disorders. They also emphasize that infant vaccination is safe. Listening to medical specialists rather than untrained individuals with biased opinions will lead more parents to feel confident about vaccinations, ensure their child receives immunizations, and support the evidence disproving any dangers associated with vaccination.
Additional research findings by Lisa Miller and Joni Reynolds (2010) support the perspective of Destefeano and Chen. Miller and Reynolds (2010) present evidence that refutes the fabricated evidence regarding infant vaccinations. In their journal, they highlight rigorous scientific studies which have found no links between autism, measles, mumps, rubella, or thimerosal-containing vaccines. They also mention a recent scientific review conducted by the Institute of Medicine (IOM), supported by the CDC, which concludes that there is no causal relationship between autism and thimerosal-containing vaccines.
According to Miller & Reynolds, if the CDC and the IOM can conclusively prove that there is no link between disorders and vaccinations, parents should feel reassured about immunizing their baby. The authors argue that the government’s refusal to allow selective vaccinations is for the protection of public health across the country. To support this argument, they provide a significant amount of legal evidence, which includes submitting “5,000 pages of transcripts, 939 medical articles, 50 expert reports, and hearing testimony from 28 experts” on February 12, 2009.
According to the S. Court of Federal Claims in the Omnibus Autism Proceeding, it was concluded that autism is not caused by MMR and thimerosal-containing vaccines (Miller & Reynolds, 2010). Knowing this fact, parents can confidently vaccinate their children to protect their health. Chris Mooney (2009) supports Miller and Reynolds’ findings by revealing the fraudulent hypothesis presented by Andrew Wakefield.
Andrew Wakefield, also referred to as “the autism guru,” was responsible for falsifying evidence in 1998 that erroneously connected infant vaccinations to autism (Mooney, 2009). Consequently, Wakefield has gained widespread condemnation as one of the most despised doctors of his era. Numerous individuals hold him personally or indirectly liable for recklessly instilling panic and resulting in tragic outcomes by deceiving the public into believing that autism is caused by infant vaccinations. Mooney (2009) emphasizes how Wakefield’s coauthors have since withdrawn their support for the autism claims made in their joint research from 1998.
If Wakefield had not released false data stating that autism is linked to infant vaccinations, there would not be a worldwide panic among parents, particularly in the United States, who are afraid of the negative effects of vaccines. From the beginning of my analysis, I have remained unbiased in order to carefully evaluate each viewpoint. While each viewpoint I have examined offers an intriguing perspective, only one is free from logical flaws: the mandatory vaccination of infants.
Regrettably, there are doctors and parents who advocate for strict vaccine regulations due to perceived medical risks. They wrongly believe that reducing the number of vaccinated children would lower autism rates. However, it has been disproven that there is a link between autism and vaccination. By choosing not to immunize their children, these parents are now putting them in danger. Additionally, some individuals incorrectly suggest that selectively vaccinating infants with specific vaccines would be advantageous.
Having researched infant vaccination, I have concluded that fully immunizing children is vital to safeguard them from potential health risks. Neglecting this responsibility exposes children to the danger of acquiring illnesses and easily transmitting them to others. Hence, enforcing mandatory immunization is imperative in order to protect public health and avert epidemics.
DeStefano, F. and Chen, R. T. “Autism And Measles-Mumps-Rubella Vaccination: Controversy Laid To Rest?. ” CNS Drugs 15. 11 (2001): 831-837.
Glazer, S. (2003, June 13). Increase in autism. CQ Researcher, 13, 545-568. Retrieved from http://library.cqpress.com/cqresearcher/
Haugen, David and Musser, Sussan. “Requiring Mandatory Vaccination Is Dangerous.” Opposing Viewpoints. Epidemics. Detroit: Greenhaven Press.
Kluck, S. (2010). “Mandatory Vaccinations Deny Parents Their Rights”. In N. Merino (Ed.), At Issue.Should Vaccinations be Manditory?. Detroit: Greenhaven Press.
Miller, Lisa, and Joni Reynolds.”Autism And Vaccination—The Current Evidence.” Journal For Specialists In Pediatric Nursing14 .3 (2010):166-172
Mooney , Chris .”VACCINATION Nation.” Discover30 .6(2009):58 .
Rabin , Jack M.M.D.”Denying Denialism.” Expert Commentary 129 .6(2010):9+.